Megan Fairchild in George Balanchine's Theme and Variations (by Paul Kolnik)
Six Dance Bag Must-Haves
Whether you’re spending your summer competing at Nationals, taking classes at your studio or training at an intensive, it’s important to make sure nothing stops you from dancing your best. Muscle cramps, blisters and even jittery nerves can all be alleviated—if you’re prepared! We caught up with New York City Ballet principal Megan Fairchild to find out the dance bag items that keep her on her A-game.
1. Paper towels. “I use fresh paper towels in my pointe shoes as padding for each time I wear them. They keep my feet dry, prevent blisters and give me some extra cushioning.”
2. Foam toe spacers. “I wear these between my first and second toes to keep my bunions from getting worse. They’re lifesavers.”
3. Thera-Band. “I do a couple of exercises with a Thera-Band before class to warm up and strengthen my ankles. Then, I stretch my calves while lying on my back.”
4. Bouncy ball. “This is to warm up my feet and work out any kinks. I also use it to roll out my shins, calves and hips.”
5. Johnson & Johnson Coach Sports Tape. “Coach Sports Tape is my favorite toe tape. I wrap each big toe and little toe before every rehearsal to prevent blisters.”
6. Bach Rescue Remedy. “I don’t use this every day, but sometimes a particular ballet or rough day calls for a couple sprays on the tongue!”
DID YOU KNOW? Worrying over stressful situations can cause inflammation. Researchers at Ohio University found that when we constantly think about a negative circumstance—like an audition gone wrong—the protein that indicates inflammation in our bodies can rise. So the next time your mind starts to wander to the negative, think happy thoughts instead.
What is it? DOMS is muscle soreness that appears around 12 hours after intense exercise or dancing and intensifies over the next two to three days. This type of soreness includes muscle tension, swelling and resistance to stretching.
What causes it? DOMS is thought to have two triggers: It can result from tiny tears in your muscle tissue or the connective tissue that holds your muscle fibers together. It can also result from an alteration in your cells’ calcium levels, causing toxin build-up in your muscles.
How to deal:
•Drink lots of water, take a warm bath, use a heating pad and gently massage sore muscles for circulation.
•Do very light (no resistance) cardio, like riding a bike with no tension—increasing circulation in the muscles will help flush out toxins.
•If your muscles feel hot or swollen, alternate between applying ice and heat to the sore areas. Don’t stretch your muscles until your soreness has significantly decreased.
•If you have to use your muscles, it can be helpful to wear a gentle compression sleeve.
Consultant: Michelle Rodriguez, MPT, OCS, CMPT, is the founder and director of Manhattan Physio Group and has worked with dancers from New York City Ballet, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet and more.
Texting while driving can distract you as much as having a blood alcohol level far over the legal limit, according to a new study published in the journal Traffic Injury Prevention. Wait until you get to rehearsal to chat about the latest casting. Don’t touch your phone when you’re behind the wheel!
Since the NYC premiere of Alexei Ratmansky's Whipped Cream at American Ballet Theatre's spring gala Monday night, the DS editors haven't stopped talking about its creepy-cute sets and costumes, created by artist Mark Ryden. Well, the obsession is about to get even crazier, because we just heard that Ryden's artwork for the ballet is now on display in not one, but TWO locations in NYC.
Yes, yes, we know: Dancers are athletes as well as artists. But we haven't seen anything hammer home just HOW athletic dancers are quite as well as this video from Self magazine, which features American Ballet Theatre principal/fairy princess Isabella Boylston trying to teach top-level CrossFit enthusiasts ballet.
There's a reason Mia Michaels' nickname is "Mama Mia." The legendary choreographer invests deeply in her dancers, whether they're competitors on "So You Think You Can Dance," members of the Radio City Rockettes, or part of her own elite assistant squad. And now, Michaels is launching a project that aims to give more dancers access to her gifts as a teacher and mentor.
And that's a wrap on "Dancing with the Stars" Season 24, ladies and gents! It's certainly been one for the books. From injuries to shocking eliminations, let's just say Season 24 has had its emotional ups and downs. But despite all that, the season made for some seriously phenom dancing and some killer performances. And as usual, we've loved watching every second of those cha chas, foxtrots, and waltzes.
Let's get right to the exciting stuff, though: Last night's winning couple of "Dancing with the Stars" is...
Nearly 80,000 dance-loving Instagram followers can't be wrong: Quinn Starner is one to watch. And what's just as impressive as the 15-year-old's rabid online following is her ever-growing list of competition accolades. Quinn, who trains at Indiana Ballet Conservatory and Stars Dance Company, been named first runner-up at The Dance Awards for two years in a row (as a junior and a teen); was the 2016 West Coast Dance Explosion Teen National Champion; earned first place in contemporary and third place in the classical division at Youth America Grand Prix Regionals in Pittsburgh last year; has won the Grand Prix Award at ADC|IBC; and was a gold medalist at World Ballet Art Competition Grand Prix. Plus, she made it to the Academy round on last year's "So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation," and has performed as Clara in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Here's what Quinn has to say about her favorite songs, teachers, and career highlights.
Want a chance to get personally involved in the HOTLY anticipated TV show "World of Dance"? Of course you do. That's why J. Lo. and the rest of the "WOD" team have launched an interactive version of the upcoming NBC series that lets Snapchatters get in on the action.
On Saturday morning, Russell Horning—aka 15-year-old Instagram king @i_got_barzz—was already kind of famous. His admittedly bad but weirdly mesmerizing dance videos had earned him shoutouts from the likes of Rihanna (and dance tributes from the likes of Josh Killacky).
But by Sunday morning? By Sunday morning, Russell Got Barzz had reached an entirely different level of memedom. Because Katy Perry tapped the teen—signature backpack and all—to perform "Swish Swish" with her on "Saturday Night Live." And the internet lost its darn mind.
If, like me, you've ever wondered (and wondered) how that stunning opening scene in La La Land came together, do we have a treat for you.