Hello All, Ella here. Here's a little blog to finish up November and start off the Christmas season!
Feet. They are an integral piece of a dancer’s body. They are our base of balance but may be required to be as expressive as our hands. To do this we need to be able to recruit all of the muscles in the foot, not just prime movers. We refer to these as the intrinsic foot muscles.
I have been introduced to a product that I believe should be in every dancer’s bag. They are called Flex-Tastic™ and can be found either online or at your local drugstore. They look like toe spacers you might use to give yourself a pedicure, but the important difference is that the Flex-Tastic™ also encompasses the big toe. This helps us form a muscle schema to remind our brain that we have 5 separate toes. Because our feet, or more specifically our toes, are constantly held together as one unit when we wear sock and shoes (tights and point shoes) the brain can “forget” that there are actually individual pieces that make up the foot. The Flex-Tastic™ helps work all of the intrinsic foot muscles to provide a much stronger and more stable base.
These exercises were created by Debra Treloar, co-founder of Treloar Physiotherapy Clinic in Vancouver. They can be used in the rehab setting, recovering from a foot or ankle injury, but for dancers whose feet are the tools of their trade, it is important to keep these muscles strong and awake at all times.
Flex-Tastic™ foot and Ankle Exercises:
Sit tall in a chair with weight equal on both sits bones. Keep your core engaged, make sure you’re not slouching. The Flex-Tastic™ should be worn with the bump on top. Keep sitting tall for all of the exercise. These exercises should be done once per day!
I can always, without fail, tell when I have a dancer in one of my yoga classes. How? Maybe it’s the fluidity of their movement, the openness of the chest and shoulders, or the grace and presence of a natural performer. Or, it could be because most dancers hit their yoga postures with a turn out, just like I did when I started my personal yoga journey. It’s a dead giveaway.
Yoga and dance complement each other well. Both are an exploration of movement, stretching the ability of the body, the mind, and the spirit. Coming from a background in dance, I’ve always struggled with finding a type of exercise I actually enjoy. I grew up exercising with choreography to remember. Now, running on a treadmill, doing repetitive sets lifting weights, or pumping out miles on a stationary bike is almost unbearably boring. There are no moves to remember, no variety, no challenge beyond raising your heart rate. This is exactly why I came to love yoga so much. Each class is choreographed with a wide variety of asanas (postures), one moving into the next. I never get bored.
So, in what ways does a consistent yoga practice help dancers? To name just a few:
Balance of Flexibility and Strength - It is important for dancers – or anyone really – to maintain a balance between strength and flexibility. Being overly muscular can hinder flexibility and vice versa. In particular, dancers tend to be more flexible than the average person, and this can easily lead to injury if you don’t have the strength to back it up. Yoga focuses on bringing this dichotomy into balance, stretching your body and backing it up with core strength, focusing on large muscle groups, and improving endurance. Classes such as Yin will provide a deep stretch and help with flexibility. Classes such as Hot Hatha and Power with help with strength and endurance.
Body Awareness/Proprioception – Over time, practicing yoga promotes an increased sense of body awareness/proprioception. This can be especially useful for dancers, helping with clean lines, the ability to make beautiful shapes with your body, and transition more fluidly from one move to the next. Body awareness allows you to sense where you are in space, where your limbs are in relation to the body, and to do this intuitively. Increased body awareness also helps you detect illness or injury, sensing that you may be dehydrated, may be coming down with a cold, have a minor sprain, or have any body part that needs to be handled gently. All yoga classes from easy to very challenging will help with body awareness.
Pranayama/Breath – Pranayama – which literally translated from Sanskrit means “life energy” – is one of the 8 Limbs of traditional yoga outlined in the Yoga Sutras. It is the practice of breathing. When you are in control of your breath, you can use that breath. Let your breath guide your movement; don’t let your movement guide your breath. Practicing pranayama – full yogic breath, ujjayi breath, lion’s breath, etc. – improves breath control, lung capacity, and can create energy or create a sense of calm. This is definitely something you will want to incorporate into dance. This practice should be incorporated into any yoga class you take.
Manage Stress and Recover – Dancer’s lives can be demanding and stressful for the body, mind, and spirit. Long rehearsals, unusual schedules, and taxing performances can all build stress. Using a physical yoga practice (asanas), breathing (pranayama), and meditation you will be better equipped to handle the stressful situations that arise in your day to day life. We stress on a regular basis, so it is important then to de-stress on a regular basis. Incorporate a Gentle Hatha or Yin class into your schedule once a week. These types of classes put an emphasis on relaxation, meditation, breathing, and healing.
If you are looking for a class I guarantee all dancers will enjoy (I know I sure do), I recommend checking out a Vinyasa class or Aerial Yoga as your jumping off point into your own personal yoga journey. Vinyasa (sometimes known as flow yoga) is a sequence of flowing postures synchronized with the breath. The postures smoothly run together and become almost like a dance. Aerial Yoga is a more recent style of yoga practiced with silk fabric hanging from the ceiling. It is the lovechild of Iyengar Yoga and Aerial Arts/Circus Performance. You will use that silk hammock to deepen stretches, achieve postures that wouldn’t otherwise be possible, and just have a whole lot of fun pretending you ran away with the circus.
My name is Christina Bassani. I am Certified Yoga Teacher. All training was completed through the Yoga Education Institute. I am Registered with Yoga Alliance. I have been teaching for about two and a half years at Core Balance Yoga & Wellness, founded by Aliage Mason-Perry. I teach Yin, Vinyasa, Hot Hatha, Gentle Hatha, Power, and Aerial Yoga.
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu
Check out our website: www.corebalanceinc.com
Follow us on Facebook: Core Balance Yoga, Massage, & Wellness Studio
KinDance sat down with Holly Logan, artistic director of Intrepidus Dance Company and instructor at Ballard Academy of Music and Dance.
KinDance: Tell us a little about who you are!
Holly Logan: I’m an educator, performer, and choreographer here in Seattle. I grew up as a very busy dancer, musical theater person, horseback rider... I was busy with lots of activities. I moved here to Seattle about five years ago and I have been working and teaching professionally ever since; and am originally from Ohio with a degree in dance.
For Holly’s bio, check out the Intrepidus Dance website.
KD: With school and dance classes starting, do you have any tips for students making the transition from summer to the busy fall schedule?
HL: The biggest thing I always tell people is: give it a couple of weeks. The first couple of weeks are always rough because you’re in a new classroom, a new grade, with a new teacher, and making new friends. Things are really different, for instance you might be going to school earlier. That transition in and of itself is big. The number one priority is that school comes first.
For all of my [dance] students, I always stress that school must come first. If you don’t finish school, you are not going to be able to do anything else. The precedent for discipline has to be set right off the bat. One way I have found to facilitate this is by putting together a schedule. Kids like schedules, schedules, schedules. My mom was great, growing up we had very strict schedules. I didn’t get super active until I was a bit older, about 9 or 10 years old. I was a total sports kid. I played soccer, basketball, softball, figure skating, cheerleading--if there was a sport, I wanted to play it! However, that also meant multiple practices a week. Kids need a clear outline of when homework time is and when dance and/or activity/sports time is. I think it’s very healthy to set concise boundaries for kids. In between dances, practices or even in the car, [encourage your kids to] work on some homework. Working with your kid to setup a schedule and allowing them to help decide when they think a good time to do homework is teaches them to make choices themselves and to establish a sense of personal commitment. This then allows their brains to be ready for practice, for rehearsal or whatever activities they are involved in.
On the subject of beginning dance classes for the year, as a dance educator I’m aware that class is always very fun… at first. The initial few weeks are exciting, you are in a new class and learning new things. For older kids who have been doing it for a while, a lot of times they’ll tend to push themselves really hard. My advice: know your body and know to listen to what your body is saying. If you are advanced, take it back a notch when you start out. You do want to let your body ease back into it. If you are feeling fatigued, take it easy and let your body rebuild the strength. Muscle memory will kick in, strength will slowly increase. You don’t want to injure yourself at the beginning of the year by pushing yourself too hard. Talk with your teacher or coach and tell them how you are feeling physically, mentally, and emotionally. This will really help an educator assist you throughout that time. If I know someone is really tired, I’m not going to harp on them as much to get their leg up. I am going to make sure they are supporting their core. If they are tired, the first thing that is going to go is the core support. On the emotional front, if there is a stressful outside situation going on, or just a lot of homework--you should always communicate such!
For parents, It sounds like a lot but make it a point to sit down with your kid. Make the schedule and communicate with your child on a daily basis to see how they are doing. They may say they are fine and roll their eyes, but if you ask consistently on a daily basis they will know you’re there when things don’t go well. Another thing is if your child has a new coach or instructor, they are the professional--so as a rule of thumb you want to listen to them as they operate in their field of expertise. However, you also want to listen to your child--especially if they feel they feel unsafe with that person. If you and your child wind up with a coach that pushes them really hard and an injury occurs at the very beginning of the year, that is a big warning sign. Don’t be afraid to talk with your coach or teacher!
Just to circle back:
KD: It sounds like, from your background, you are a big advocate of cross-training. What cross-training options do you recommend for dancers, especially if they are interested in going into high school or college dance?
HL: For dancers of any age, I definitely recommend strength training. Most studios offer a strengthening and flexibility class (usually) that is a solid 45 minutes to an 1 hour long class where your kid is getting almost one on one training in a strength core program. When we set our kids up with these basics of conditioning, it really helps prep them to enter safely back into the classroom.
When an instructor only has 1 hour and 15 minutes with a kid in ballet, we generally stick to teaching the technique and may not have time to really break down the core work and make sure they are getting it. If you don’t have a studio that offers one [a conditioning class], that is fine, some studios don’t have the space or the appropriate teachers to teach that. I encourage you to look for somewhere that does, such as the YMCA… ...or maybe a gymnastics academy.
Another cross-training niche that I think dancers don’t get a lot of is cardio. Running is great but can be hard on the joints. You can also get cardio by swimming. It’s great cross training for dancers because it is easy on the joints, teaches us breath control, and offers the cardio portion because it gets your heart rate up. If you are in high school, and you’re on an elite team, and you are going to be in seventeen numbers in the recital--how do you expect to get through that if you don’t have that cardio training? Stamina is key, and you get that through cardio.
KD: If a student does get injured, what steps would you like the student and family to take and communicate with you?
HL: The first thing you should do with a child who is dancing or who wants to be a dancer in the future (even if you think that it won’t go anywhere beyond recreation) is to go to your doctor and possibly get an x-ray. I have often requested [an x-ray] personally because my feet are the way I make money and I just want to be extra sure. Communicate to your doctor all the activities [the child] is currently involved in. Get doctors notes! If they are cleared to dance, I as an instructor need to see that. Not only do I want to see that in writing, but I want to know their (prescribed) activity level and any steps being taken for rehab.
Don’t be afraid to go into physical therapy. I had a student that broke her ankle last year; however, she did come to class and I gave her exercises to do in class that did not involve the use of her feet. They [the parents] communicated and while we knew that she was not going to be able to perform in the recital which was sad, she kept coming to class because she loves dancing.
On that note, don’t miss class! If anything, show up and your teacher will formulate something for you to do. At any age, if you rehabilitate an injury incorrectly or too quickly it can really create problems down the road. In the case that an injury is too severe, observing [class] is so helpful. When you observe a class, people tend to think they are missing out--but there is so much you can learn! A child can gain a lot from sitting out and watching corrections--oftentimes they [corrections] begin to make more sense.
KD: Many kids are coming straight from school or other activities to dance class. Getting a proper snack that is going to give them the energy to get through class till dinner can be tricky. Do you have any tips for what they can do, what snacks they should be eating, what should be the main components of those snacks?
HL: The first thing that comes to mind is that parents should pack items that do not need to be entirely finished once class begins. While granola bars are fine, I always end up with one kid telling me they “aren’t ready to come into class & line up” because they are still eating their granola bar. Things like slicing up apples, bagging up your peanuts, bagging up your grapes really help alleviate this issue. I always recommend fruits because they have great natural sugars. Nuts, are a natural source of protein. With the aforementioned snacks they are A) bite size, B) [the kids] don’t have to finish them completely, C) and they can eat a bit on a water break real quick.
The snacks you never want kids to have prior to class fatty foods like a donut or chips. I see it a lot. It’s easy to go to Starbucks and get them a croissant. However, that is very bready and heavy, we don’t want to put a lot of breads in their system before they dance. It just doesn’t sit well and it takes a lot for their body to process it. It makes it harder for them to execute movement in class if their body is preoccupied with processing this really heavy carbohydrate. After class on the other hand--load up!
Before class, I would say keep it light, keep it fresh. For kids that are older, high school age, I used to drink slim fast in between my rehearsals as a great source of vitamins and it has a good source of calories. Especially if you are taking four hours of class a day, you need the extra calories. So I recommend it for 13 and up. Breakfast shakes are also really good to throw in your bag. I would drink one of these two between school and rehearsal, so I’d have a solid 45 minutes to get it into my body and would keep my fruits and nuts for in-between classes.
KD: Any last things you would like to touch on?
HL: Don’t be afraid to try new things! I think for parents, embracing the realization that your kid can do more than you think they can. Can they really go from a soccer practice into a dance class into another dance class? Is it tiring? Yes. Are they capable of it? More than capable! And it’s great for them, because it’s cross-training them. It’s also giving their brain exercise in a way that not all the other kids are getting. Soccer practice requires something different of their brain. It requires quick firing of muscles, quick decision-making. Whereas dance is a well thought out process. They have to memorize very quickly, then have to manifest the movement in their body. Both things are teaching them discipline. So whether they are a soccer player or a dancer or a scientist... doing these activities teaches them really crucial things! The more you can get kids involved in extracurricular activities, the more they stay out of trouble.
For teachers: the beginning of the school year for dance teachers is always so intimidating. You don’t know who you are getting in class, you don’t how to make your lesson plans, you forget to eat, you live on coffee! We often forget to take care of ourselves, so make as an educator that you are taking the time for yourself. Take a class yourself! That’s the one thing I always forget to do. Make that a priority, because you can’t be a good teacher to your students if you’re not investing in furthering your own education. Go take a class, make sure you are eating good food! Although it is tempting, we can’t just live off of coffee alone (or be the best that we can be for our students.) The other thing to remember is to stay committed. The beginning of the school year is exciting, but keep in mind that the excitement is going to die down. It is imperative that we stay in-tune to these changes and do our best to keep our students (and ourselves) engaged.
[Parents] ready your kids for that moment. It usually happens in November or February, but remind your kids that they have committed to something. You have committed to a class, you’ve committed to a team and someone is expecting you to be there and someone is waiting to invest in you. While it seems all fun and crazy now, eventually it’s going to seem overwhelming and may seem like too much. However, if you’ve made that schedule and communicated with your teachers and you’ve helped your child establish what they are doing--see it through. That’s the best lesson I think anybody can learn, and it’s what teachers appreciate the most. When we have a kid who continually shows up and tries their hardest, there is nothing more rewarding and those are the kids grow the most. Know that going into it, it’s going to get boring and it’s going to get hard and your kid is going to want to opt out. But commit to the logic that is a really essential lesson for kids to learn. Tell them now, “we are seeing this through. It’s fun now but know going into it that this is something we are going to see through to the end.” If they don’t want to again next year that’s fine, but seeing the year-long commitment through teaches them that people rely on them and are ready to invest in them.
Lastly, charge your children to be responsible for their belongings. I had a six year old who forgot her tap shoes 3 weeks in a row and when I asked her, “Hey where are your tap shoes? Where are your dance shoes?” and her mantra was always, “my mom forgot to get them.” I had to chuckle. I said to her, “your mom has a newborn and two other children, you are 6 years old and are responsible for your belongings.” I could see that it dawned on her that, “oh I am, and I can bring my own shoes!” She never forgot her shoes again. I encourage other dance teachers to help the parents out with this. Make your students responsible for their personal items.
Ella here, let’s talk posture.
Last month I saw an article about posture on the IADMS facebook page, and I chuckled to myself because not one week prior I had used the same article for a handout at work. I’m sure this topic has been posted on the internet in many different ways but here is my take on it when looking at it from an injury prevention standpoint.
On a daily basis I work with individuals who have been injured either at work or in a car accident and have been struggling to return to pre-injury functionality. It seems as though most of the people I work with have a head forward, shoulders protracted posture. The first step on any of my rehab programs with these individuals is to correct their posture. I find myself using imagery and terms I picked of from various dance teachers “feel lifted up and forward” or “think you have a hook at the top of your head lifting you up”. Imagery can do wonders for body positioning. It was actually a client of mine who got me really thinking about posture and recovery when she was telling me about a conversation she’d had with her massage therapist. The massage therapist had been making note of an increase number of shoulder and neck injuries that are not responding as quickly to treatment as they use to. The RMT’s thoughts were that because more and more people have this terrible head forward posture that the body cannot adapt as well after a serious injury, and I’d have to agree.
As the original study from IADMS suggests, the load on the neck increases exponentially the further forward the head is in position. Let’s look at the muscle that is hugely impacted when the head comes forward. One of the functions of the upper trapezius (often referred to as the upper traps) is meant to extend the cervical spine. That is, they are involved in bringing the head back and tilting the head up. When the head is properly aligned these muscles have a chance to relax. As soon as the head goes forward this muscle now is working to return back to neutral. All of a sudden this muscle is constantly “turned on”. The farther the head goes forward, the heavier it becomes and the hard the upper traps have to work.
For those who feel this head forward position is their “natural” posture, their body has slowly overtime gotten used to this posture, so the individual doesn't feel like it is causing them any trouble. The problems arrive when they have a traumatic injury (ie whip lash) and they can no longer sustain the terrible position they are used to, so they feel like they are in constant pain and cannot fully recover. It doesn't matter how often your get massage for your muscles are going to tighten right back up if they are constantly being overworked. At that point you’re not treating the problem, you’re just treating the symptoms. By correcting posture first then strengthening the muscles in the shoulders and neck to work in the corrected posture it much easier to recover from these injuries.
Head forward posture is one problem I rarely see in dancers who have been training for many years. Overall, dancers are trained to stand tall, slouching is out of the question. The trick is to make sure you keep this up when you’re on your phones and on the computer. I found this really fun video demonstrating the proper way to hold your phone and set yourself up at your desk. The desk set up is a little unrealistic for many people, but taking the information and setting up yourself in a seated position is definitely a step in the right direction!
It has been about a week since Khambatta Dance Company got home from our tour to Brazil. The day of our performance we landed at 2:30am in Fortaleza after 28 hours of travel, not including the travel from Mexico to Seattle we had done the day before we embarked for Brazil. We were at that point, excited for more adventures and also more skilled in sleeping on red eye flights. When we landed in Fortaleza we were picked up by our very nice guide and taken to our hotel. There we slept for about six hours before getting up to grab breakfast and get ready to tech for our performance that night. Coffee was our friend! We all kept in good spirits, and I personally felt that if I could perform that night after 28 hours of travel to a different continent, then I can do anything. The floor was not what we were expecting and required adapting. The marley floor was not what we were used. It was sticky and actually rolled up under my foot when I slide into the splits. I was very proud of the performance that we gave and had fun performing for our Brazilian audience.
April was an amazing whirlwind month with a LOT of travelling. Brazil was beautiful but definitely not what I was expecting. We saw both the beautiful side of Fortaleza and the rougher side of the city. It was an eye opening experience and I am grateful for the people I was travelling with. The beaches were amazing and the rip tide was intense! Lots of fresh coconut water, straw-in-a-fresh-coconut style, and delicious fresh pineapple, mango, and papaya. We used tons of sunscreen, saw very tiny swimsuits, and discovered caipirinhas. The language barrier was a struggle, but by the end we were able to communicate enough with the little bit of Portuguese we had learned and hand gestures. Hint: Spanish and French are similar to Portuguese but will not be enough to communicate. My advice, start learning a little bit before you get down there. I used an app called Duolingo, and it was fun and helpful.
More Touring Tips from CarliAnn:
CarliAnn here! Khambatta Dance Company has just about completed the first leg of our tour. Right now we are waiting in the Queretaro, Mexico airport to go back to the States. This being my first big tour with a dance company, I have learned a lot. Such as what to pack, how to handle the elements while dancing in another country, importance of a smile and attempting to speak the language and necessity of having pepto bismo on hand all the time.
First off, Queretaro is absolutely beautiful! Rich with history and bright colors. It is one of the safest cities in Mexico and we definitely felt that. We still toured around the city in a group, but there was no point when I felt unsafe. The food was delicious! I have gluten and MSG (monosodium glutamate) allergies and for the most part I was able to feed myself without any issues. The theater we performed in was an old church that had been converted into a museum with art galleries. Every room we walked by had something exciting and beautiful taking place. Dance rehearsal in one gallery, an installation of lights in a different gallery, and a violin music lesson in another. The performances went well and we met the beautiful dancers of Ciudad Interior Danza Contemporanea!
From this experience, I have learned some helpful dance tour tips:
Hi CarliAnn here! I just completed a big show week with Intrepidus Dance in Seattle and we had an amazing time! Check us out at website….
Leading up to show week I was experiencing knee pain, which was terrifying! My knees don’t usually give me trouble so this was a new sensation to be experiencing.
I noticed the pain began to increase from uncomfortable to actually painful and stiff when I started working more hours at my restaurant job where I have to wear a minimum of a 1 inch heel. My time on my feet in heels went from 15-20 hours a week to 25-30 hours a week. That coupled with the increased rehearsal time in preparation for upcoming shows and projects caused some overuse in my knee. Like many dancers, my initial approach was to acknowledge the discomfort and hope it would resolve on its own. That was not the case.
(I am not a medical professional! Please seek medical help when experiencing pain, this is just my personal account)
This injury may have stemmed from a hip injury I had in the summer that caused misalignment on that side of my body. It’s important to remember that everything is connected, in this case my hip injury transferred to my knee and ankle at times. My steps for personal rehab was rolling my quads, IT bands, hamstrings, and calves on a roller or with a rolling pin whenever I was in the dance studio. This was helpful, having tightness in any of these areas can cause strain on the ligaments in the knee and even cause tracking issues. I also began lying on my back and rolling a large exercise ball up and down the wall with my feet till my knees reached a 90 degree angle or less, focusing on alignment the whole time. This was helpful to reduce swelling in my knee (ELEVATE! Gravity was helping in pulling that excess fluid back to my heart and circulatory system).
These were steps were helpful while in the dance studio but, I was still experiencing pain in my day-to-day life. My knee was beginning to make new clicking sounds and hurt when I was driving, bending down, and in general just felt less stable. I went to my chiropractor and talked to him about this. He discovered that my patella, the floating sesamoid bone in my knee joint, had more mobility on my injured side compared to my non-injured side. This increased mobility indicated to him that the alignment of the patella was not where it should be. He adjusted that side and recommended that I come back weekly for the next few weeks. I felt an immediate decrease in pain and increase in stability after being adjusted, but still not 100%. I wore a brace while in rehearsal for about a week and half following my first adjustment. It has been three weeks and find that I don’t need the brace as often and feel more stable. I did not wearing the brace for the performances and have had no trouble so far.
This is good news! I have an adventure filled month of touring in the next month and need to be in the best shape I can be. That being said, knee pain is not something to take lightly. I will continue my rehab and seeing the chiropractor as he recommends. I also will be seeking the advice of a physical therapist in the coming week. I highly recommend seeking medical professional help much sooner than I did. By waiting and attempting to solve the problem on my own, I most likely caused my recovery time to last longer and experienced pain longer than what was necessary.
Over the past year I have been coaching gymnastics to youngsters from 4 years to 15 years. In that time I have begun to understand how incredible the power of thought is. I know this is starting to sound like a motivational speech, but hear me out.
I was a gymnast before I became a dancer. And to be honest I don’t remember a ton of that whole period of my life. It’s the craziest thing! I can recall snippets of competition meets, tumbling drills, ripped up hands and bloody toes, but most of it is a blur. The memories that do stand out for me are the ones where I overcome my fear of a new skill and my coaches’ endless support (and frustration).
I now understand where those coaches were coming from. I coach these amazing kids who are perfectly capable of performing the skills I am asking of them, but for whatever reason they can talk themselves out of it. For this reason, the word “can’t” is not allowed in practice. The reason being that before you can DO anything, you have to BELIEVE you are capable. For example, before you brush your hair out of your face, you have to think about moving, which then sets off a series of events. Your brain tells your nerves to fire in your hand, and so forth and so on. If you say “I can’t …”, you are setting up a block for yourself.
An interesting experiment was conducted by Dr. Marasu Emoto, commonly referred to as “The Rice Experiment”. Dr. Emoto put cooked rice into three containers. One was labelled “thank you”, the second jar was labelled “You Fool”, and the third jar was not labelled. Every day for 30 days, someone would read the corresponding label to the jar of rice. At the end of 30 days, the “Thank you” rice was slightly fermented and had a pleasant malt odor. The “You Fool” rice was moldy, putrid smelling and a dark color. The ignored jar was in the worst shape of the three at the end of the 30 days. From this experiment, Dr. Emoto hypothesized that the human consciousness has an effect on surroundings, in the particular case, the molecular structure of water. Given that our bodies are composed anywhere from 44 to 75% water depending on our age. Our thoughts are much more powerful than we give them credit for.
So the next time you begin getting down on yourself, trying a new skill, or just having a bad day keep in mind how powerful your thoughts are.
Hi there! CarliAnn here. Recently, I found an article titled
Taking up ballet in old age may help ward off dementia: And, don't worry, those creaky knees needn't hold you back!
Naturally I had to read it. Now if you are like me and are beginning to feel the creaks of your body. Wondering how long your body will allow you to dance, then this article will renew that dream of dancing forever. Granted you may not be able to do the grand allegro combinations as you do now, but that is not to say you won't perfect the petit allegro. And heck, if it "wards off dementia" and helps keep my back straight and aligned, sign me up forever! What I like about this article is that it inspires hope and motivation to stay active for as long as I possible can.
There are many benefits to staying active for as long as you can. The saying "If you don't use it, you lose it" holds true with muscle mass. With less use your muscles, there is a decrease in mass, known as atrophy. Atrophy happens in adults of all ages who decrease their activity and thereby their use of muscles. This same saying holds true for bone density. Dense, strong, bones are extremely important. Broken bones become a very real danger to our health as we grow older, because of the complications that can arise. Maintaining an active lifestyle with weight-bearing activities , such as walking or ballet class, will encourage the body to keep strong bones. Our bodies likes to run efficiently. This means that if muscles or bones are not being used, our bodies do not want to expend the energy to maintain them at a higher level than is necessary for our activity.
In short. check out the article above. I hope it inspires you. And most importantly keep dancing your dance.
Spring is here, and what does that mean? SPRING BREAK!!!! For young dancers this often means time
off from classes, as well as time off of school. Time to rest and recover is not a bad thing, sometimes a
necessary thing and not something that should be feared. To highlight my point, I'd like to share an article from Pointe Magazine discussed the importance in rest for a very common injury, shin splints. http://pointemagazine.com/issues/junejuly-2009/scoop-shin-splints
Dancers often feel that any time off means that they aren't working hard enough and are going to get "out
of shape" but just because you're not in class, doesn't mean you stop working.
CarliAnn & Ella