Follow Elana Bierman on Instagram @dancer_elana.k
Photo -Lance and Lola
I have been dancing for as long as I can remember. Dancing is ingrained in every part of who I am. I have been dancing since I could walk and started competing at the age of 4. My team is my Tribe , my family, my home away from home. They encourage me and push me to be my best and I feel so blessed everyday to be a part of this amazing family.
Today I would love to share how to be a strong and supportive member of a large dance family.
As a competitive dancer , I spend a lot of hours in the studio or at competitions with my dance family. Most weeks I am there more than I am at home. So all of my coaches and the dancers are like family to me, a big, supportive and sometimes crazy family. My team consists of over 70 dancers ranging from the ages of 3 to 18 years old. So you can imagine things can get a little hectic sometimes. Their constant love and support has helped me to become the dancer and person I am today and I couldn’t imagine my life without them. I also know with a doubt that we have each other’s back no matter what.
Here is what I have learned so far that has helped me to be a good friend, team member and has helped me grow as a dancer in a large studio.
*Support and love your teammates. Show up for them and be their cheerleader at competitions or at the studio. This is a big one.. it is so important to encourage all of your teammates no matter how big or small everyone likes to hear they are amazing.
*Always come to class prepared, be stretched and ready to learn or to help out a teammate who may be struggling with a dance or trick.
*Be willing to lend a helping hand if your teammate needs help with a costume change, they need a stretching buddy.. or if a younger dancer needs help backstage or with their shoes.. always help them and encourage other teammates to do the same. I love the quote “teamwork makes the dream work” because it really does!!
*Remember to approach everything with a positive attitude. Always practice hard and encourage your teammates to do their best to help one another and lead by example.. there will always be someone younger looking up to you.
*Always be each other’s biggest fan and support one another regardless of how you score at a competition. Dance is subjective and can be judged differently from competition to competition. So it is important to remember that you are not competing against each other, you are only competing against yourself and how your performed at your last competition. Always strive to be better than you were the time before.
*Be kind and include everyone. This includes everyone you meet at convention or competitions not just your teammates. Be the studio that everyone admired for their kindness.
*Never complain about placement. Each dancer has their strengths and weaknesses and you were placed where you need to be in order to make the routine perfect and your team strong. Trust your coaches, they know what they are doing.
*I really feel that the following quote truly symbolizes my team perfectly. “We’re a team: Whatever you lack , I got you. we will balance each other out. If there is a minor setback we will make a major comeback. If you have a bad day, we will make the next one better. You need support, we will be your backbone. I will keep you motivated and at the top of your game .. always. We will always remain consistent and loyal, because we will always have each other’s backs.”
Everyone on my team is a rockstar and I am so blessed to call them my family.
I hope this article helps you be the best dancer and teammate that you can be and to not only be an amazing teammate but to learn and grow as a dancer.