Health & Body

Acupuncture has proven benefits for reducing pain and getting dancers back on their feet, but it's also a way to treat your overall well-being—in both mind and body. "Acupuncture works very holistically," says Cassandra Krug, licensed acupuncturist at the Acupuncture Clinic of Boulder, in Boulder, CO. "Even if you come in because of ankle pain, we're looking at your whole body. We're trying to return you to a place of homeostasis, or balance."

Peter Schmidt, a licensed acupuncturist who works with Pacific Northwest Ballet dancers, thinks that acupuncture—when combined with the work of dancer-friendly Western doctors, physical therapists, and orthopedists—results in a higher success rate for his patients. "Acupuncture can't address everything," he says. "But for things that are bothering you that don't show up on an X-ray or MRI, acupuncture could help." Is acupuncture right for you? We talked to the experts to find out what dancers should know before going under the needle.

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How To
(courtesy Jae Blaze)

Remember Rihanna's epic onstage dance party at the 2016 MTV VMAs? She effortlessly flowed through a mashup of "Rude Boy," "What's My Name" and "Work," wearing a feathery bra-top, baggy pants and an oversized T-shirt wrapped around her head. And the dozens of backup dancers? They weren't really backup—Rihanna was clearly part of the group, and the group was having an amazing time grooving together. The sound, choreography, costuming and camaraderie were pure dancehall.

"Dancehall is a genre created in Jamaica," says Jae Blaze, a dancehall instructor at L.A.'s Millennium Dance Complex (MDC) who has choreographed and danced for Rihanna and other international pop artists. Though the dance element was originally considered a freestyle form, classes are popping up at top studios from coast to coast. Here's what you need to know about this branch of the street-dance family tree.

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Dance Videos

Noah Vinson, a member of the Mark Morris Dance Group, coaches fellow company member Dallas McMurray through a section of L'Allegro's famous "Male Bird Solo," which creates character with its detailed head movements and winglike arms.

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Dance News
Project Resilience ambassador Alison Stroming (Dave Brewer, courtesy Stroming)

Artist and philanthropist Everett Dyson had always loved theater. But the rise of American Ballet Theatre principal Misty Copeland put ballet on his radar, too. Realizing that many young dancers have, like Copeland, lived through difficult circumstances, he recently founded Project Resilience, a scholarship for students who've received minimal support in their ballet training. Each year, one dancer will receive a scholarship to help pay for his or her summer intensive at American Ballet Theatre, Dance Theatre of Harlem or Houston Ballet.

Dyson's goal is to eventually support one dancer's intensive tuition at each program, or even multiple dancers per school. With big stars behind the project (yep, Misty's an ambassador, as is another iconic black ballerina, Lauren Anderson), Project Resilience will hopefully continue to grow.

Dance Theatre of Harlem dancer Alison Stroming feels honored to be one of Project Resilience's ambassadors. “I want every young dancer to have the chance to follow their dreams," she says. “I knew Project Resilience was something I could relate to." —Nicole Loeffler-Gladstone

Want to support Project Resilience? Buy one of Covet Dance's cute “Ballerinas Do It Better" tops, created exclusively for the project. One hundred percent of the profits will go toward scholarships. Find them at


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