There’s nothing better than being prepared. If you’re not prepared, be resourceful.
Every dancer should have their own dance bag. We personally like to use athletic bags for a number of reasons, the two main reasons being:
1) They tend to have a number of pockets which helps to keep it organized
2) They usually have a pocket with a vent to help with those smelly shoes!
What dancers should keep in their dance bag will vary depending on the season they’re in, but there are a number of essential that should be included:
- Mini first-aid kit. It’s easy to purchase small pre-assembled first-aid kits from the store that contain most of the essentials, however, there are couple things that should be added:
o Disposable ice pack. You never know when you might need it, keeping swelling down on a new injury can be essential for a quick recovery.
o Tensor bandage (ACE bandage). Again, you never know when you might need to wrap a sprained ankle and the sooner you are able to start compressing the injury the better.
o Tape. This includes both athletic tape and toe tape. We recommend Johnson&Johnson brand, but there are many types. Tape is often used to help prevent nasty blisters from forming.
- Snack Food. Keeping a granola bar or a similar non-perishable item in your dance bag is a good practice. It will come in handy for those days when you’re in rehearsal longer than expected, or for those days when you just seem to need a little extra bit of energy.
- Water Bottle. You should always keep a water bottle with you. Enough said.
- 2nd pair of shoes. Rotating your shoes (particularly pointe shoes) will help them last longer. You never know when you’ll need your back-up pair.
- Spare Uniform. Depending on your dance style, it’s good to keep an extra pair of things like tights, leotards, jazz pants etc.
- Warm-Ups. Layers help to stay warm, especially during performance time when you go for long period of time without moving. Having your warm-ups handy will help prevent your muscles from prematurely cooling down.
Once your dance bag is complete and stocked, the next step is keeping it organized. Depending on the bag you have it can be a bit of a challenge. Zip-lock bags can become your best friend. They come in all different sizes so even your bigger items can be made to fit. Keeping different pieces of your dance bag in zip-locks also helps to keep everything smelling like feet! Like we mentioned before, bags with pockets can be a big help, but there are always ways to make do with what you have. Everyone function’s a little differently, so by all means, let us know what you keep in your dance bag!
CarliAnn & Ella