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Dancers, Be Good To Yourself!
Let's start with the summer of last year, aside from my first nationals, I attended 6 summer intensives! To each their own and yes we all need R&R but in hindsight, I really grew as a dancer during the summer. Without school and having small class sizes and a non-competitive learning environment, I was able to thrive! To say the least I had "kickstarted" my dance season. I also decided to try YAGP (which has always been super intimidating for me). I learned a variation at the end of summer and trained through the rest of last year.
I think by projecting and putting myself out there, I had a lot of positivity surrounding me that provided me with a few ambassador programs. I did very well at the comps I was able to attend this season and also conquered my YAGP fears!
I think a lot of dancers can relate to the feeling you have before you go on stage or during an audition or waiting for results...it still gives me butterflies every single time! To be judged is what this competitive dancing world is. But lately, I react less to unexpected results. At times, I think I did great, and live with the constructive criticism given and applying corrections to become better. Realizing I'm a work in progress and no one is born perfect, because, how boring is that?!
The evolution is thrilling and exciting and so rewarding for me. Setting goals, focusing on them and then, once achieved, feels amazing. I wasn't built with a ballerina physique. I have shorter legs and a long torso. I’m quite the opposite really! But, that doesn't mean we should feel discouraged from trying something like competitive ballet. I can say I love it more through learning variations, getting great corrections and help from my caring teachers.
It’s such a beautiful art form and so physically demanding. I also have bad turnout. I have a bit of a pigeon toe! But, I am working on this on my own via PT:) We all have our personal shortcomings but mostly my takeaway is if you tell yourself, I can't or I have this working against me, we are only doing a disservice to ourselves, no one else.
Surround yourself with positive teachers and peers, make some goals for the coming year and put in the work!! Even if its stretching/strengthening for 10 min before you go to bed. Self- love is abundant but in short demand. I hope by reading this you will become motivated and will set yourself up with a goal, a plan and follow through!