Thinkstock

New Year’s Resolution Ideas for Dancers

Yes, New Year's resolutions are still a thing! As obnoxious as it is to be constantly bombarded by "What's your New Year's resolution this year?," this goal-setting tradition can actually be the first step in making healthy changes that will help you improve as a dancer. But in order for those changes to occur you have to have a plan. That's where goal setting comes in. Well-thought-out goals will help set you up for success—so we've come up with a few ideas for you to adopt into your own list of of resolutions this year.


Try a New Style of Dance

What's a dance genre you've always been curious about, but never had the guts to try? Decide that this year you're going to give it a shot. You may have been a bunhead all your life or a contemporary kween, but there might be another dance style out there that you were born to try. You'll never know if you don't branch out and give it the old college try. Make 2019 the year that you step out of your comfort zone and try a new style. Go easy on yourself and take a beginner class, or use your summer program as an opportunity to make the stylistic change. You'll be glad you took a chance and tried something new, even if it only further proves that you're on track with your current style of choice.

Develop a Cross-Training Routine

A cross training routine that focuses on your own strengths and weaknesses can mean the difference between a strong dancer and an injury-prone one. Use the new year to find another form of exercise that will help improve your dancing. If you're looking to strengthen your core than Pilates might be the way to go. If you're looking to loosen up then swimming could be beneficial. Whatever you decide to do make sure that you tailor your training to your body and its needs.

Work on Your Acting Skills

Dancing is all about telling a story. Whether you're a Broadway dancer playing a character in a musical, or a commercial dancer breaking it down on a T.V. show, acting is an important craft to learn. Acting gives you another tool to help you portray a story with your body. Whether you decide to take acting classes or observe your favorite dancers portraying new characters, make a conscious effort to improve your acting within your own style of dance and see what happens when you do.

Make Your Mental Health a Priority

As dancers, we tend to spend a lot of time focusing on injury prevention and other physical health issues—and a lot of times, mental health is put on the back burner. Make your mental wellbeing a priority. The brain is an essential organ in the body, and it's important to give it the attention it deserves. Whether you're struggling with depression, anxiety, an eating disorder, or any other mental illness don't be shy about talking about it and/or asking for help. Many people struggle with mental health so you don't need to feel like you're alone. Let these dancers who've opened up about their personal struggles with mental health inspire you to make 2019 your happiest and healthiest year yet.

Improve Your Artistry

One of the major things that makes dance different from sports is the fact that artistry is required. On top of demonstrating speed, precision, balance, and endurance dancers are also required to show emotion and feeling. A dancer may have technique for days, but if they lack artistry, their performance can often feel dead and a little boring. A dancer who performs with artistry, on the other hand, can take the audience on a journey and allow them to experience the emotions they are portraying. 2019 could be the year you get in touch with your inner artist and find ways to unlock the emotion within your dancing.

Become Social Media Savvy

You may see social media as something fun you do in your free time, but did you know it could actually help make or break your dance career? Instagram and Twitter are great tools that can give you visibility and can even help you land your dream gig. But they also have downsides in that too much screen time can cause unhealthy comparisons and anxiety. Use 2019 to find your social media Zen.

Latest Posts


All photos by Jayme Thornton. Wardrobe styling throughout by Chloë Chadá Van for The QUIRK Group.

Lizzo's Leading Ladies: Meet the Big Grrrls

Rising pop superstar Lizzo is changing the game in all kinds of ways. (A singer who also raps and plays the flute? You'd better believe it.) But she's become an especially important leader in the body-positivity revolution. And that emphasis on diversity and self-love extends to her fabulous group of backup dancers, known as The Big Grrrls.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Because there's never been a better time to get your TikTok on. (Getty Images/TikTok)

7 of the Best TikTok Dance Challenges to Learn While Stuck at Home

Right now, a lot of us are social-distancing. Which is a good thing for the community. But for dancers, being at home—read: not in the studio—can be especially tough.

Enter TikTok. The app is blowing up right now, with everyone from Hailey Bieber to LeBron James to former Bachelorette (and "Dancing with the Stars" champ) Hannah Brown making accounts to stave off the stir-craziness.

To get you started on your TikTok journey, Dance Spirit rounded up seven of the best dances for you to learn. And when you're ready to share the fruits of your TikTok labors, be sure to tag us @dancespiritmagazine—we'll repost some of our faves!

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Getty Images

A Letter from the Editor in Chief

Hi, dance friends. It is a strange time to be a person in the world, and an especially strange time to be a dancer. As the dance community faces the coronavirus crisis, a lot of you are coping with closed studios, canceled performances and competitions, and a general sense of anxiety about how your world will look going forward.

Yes, dancers are super resilient, and there's been a lot of inspiring community-building happening. #LivingRoomDances and Instagram dance parties and virtual ballet classes with the pros are wonderful. Dance can, and should, be a bright spot in the darkness. But that weird, empty feeling you have? It might be grief. The loss of the certainty of daily class, the loss of the promise of that big end-of-year performance—that's real. The dance studio has always been a safe place; it's especially hard not to have that outlet now, when you need it most.

We're here for you. We—and our friends at Dance Magazine, Pointe, Dance Teacher, The Dance Edit, and Dance Business Weekly—are doing our best to document the hurdles facing the dance industry, and to advocate for dancers in need. We're developing more online content that will help you maintain and improve your technique while you're at home, and process the mental and emotional fallout of all this upheaval. (You can keep up with the latest stories here.) And we're still making our print magazine. We have issues planned and shot, full of great dance stories and beautiful photos. We're not going anywhere.

We want to hear from you. Talk to us. Or dance to us. Or both. We won't stop moving, and you shouldn't, either.

Margaret

contest
Enter the Cover Model Search