Dancer on Stagestep's home studio tap board. Great sound at home. It can fit in a closet, under a bed, and in the trunk of your car for travel. It is lightweight and great over virtually any floor surface.
Without the proper dance flooring at home, you are inviting injury. A safe environment maximizes your performance potential and keeps you healthy. There are three elements to a safe floor:
1. A floating wood subfloor or a duel density foam-backed flooring system is essential. You jump (small or large) hundreds of times during class. Each time you hit the floor, gravity times three hits your body and over time causes fatigue and injury. Having a shock absorbing subfloor helps reduce that harmful impact. Less pain more dance. 2. It is important to have a flooring system that supports you when you balance. You can't dance on a trampoline because it does not have any lateral (sideways) foot support. Carpet is not an ideal surface for the same reason. You need a floor that supports your foot. You will surely tumble trying an arabesque on a pillow. Staying upright should not be an iffy option. 3. It is called coefficient of friction. You may call it slippery or sticky. We like to call it fast or slow. Ballet dancers like slower floors. Jazz and tappers like faster floors. The wrong floor surface can make you feel like you are dancing on an ice skating rink or stuck in mud. Both are uncomfortable and dangerous.
The point is there are a number of components to consider before choosing the proper floor. Make sure you pick the type that will keep you safe. There are many options. Ask questions!
Safety first, but there are some other considerations to ponder. What will this cost? Where will it go? How big a space do I need? Is the space going to be used for other purposes? Is it easy to install and perhaps, more importantly, can it easily be removed?
What do you need? There are small personal practice boards and mats, and that may do the trick. It is also possible to have a professional dance studio floor in your home. Portable mirrors and barres can be added to complete the project. It depends on your budget and what you want to accomplish.
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)
Dance Spirit's 2019 Cover Model Search finalists: Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland! One of them will win a spot on Dance Spirit's Fall 2019 cover. Learn more about the dancers by clicking on their names here:
vote for your favorite below. You can vote once a day now through July 15.
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get social! We'll be factoring social media likes and shares into our final tallies. Be sure to show your favorite finalist some love on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, sharing their profile pages and using the hashtag #DanceSpiritCMS.
When it comes to injury-prone body parts, knees reign supreme for dancers. But a little strengthening can go a long way in preventing painful outcomes. We turned to Dirk Hartog, a physical therapist with Westside Dance Physical Therapy in NYC, for three exercises that'll support and stabilize your knees.
James Whiteside (Jayme Thornton for Dance Magazine)
Say you're perpetually impeccable designer Thom Browne. Say you're planning your Spring 2020 Paris menswear show along a "Versailles country club" theme. Say you want a world-class danseur to open the show with some kind of appropriately fabulous choreography.
Who do you call? James Whiteside, of course. On Saturday, the American Ballet Theatre principal—wearing pointe shoes and a glorious pinstriped tutu—kicked off Browne's presentation at the École des Beaux-Arts with a 15-minute, show-stealing solo. Whiteside choreographed the piece himself, with the help of detailed notes from the designer.