Dance With Us Ottawa Offers 5 Life Lessons Every Ballroom Dancer Should Learn
1. Listen to criticism, but remember the positive
They say that it takes five positive remarks to counteract the impact of one criticism. As humans we’re naturally inclined to focus on the problem and ignore what’s already working. This can be a good thing when it comes to learning and growth as a dancer.
However, it’s important to remember all the good things about your dancing, too. Don’t obsess over every criticism and then brush off compliments like they don’t matter. Spend some time soaking up all the positive feedback that comes your way.
There are plenty of solo dances out there, but ballroom isn’t one of them. Connecting with your partner is key if you want to be the best ballroom dancer you can be.
Focus on giving your partner a great frame and hand connections. If you’re a lead, make sure you make adjustments to suit your follow’s height and level of dance. If you’re a follow, pay close attention to the subtle signals your partner is sending you with every movement.
3. Focus on progress, not perfection
If you want to be a great ballroom dancer, you’ll have to push yourself and always strive to improve. But it’s important to remember that there is no such thing as perfection when it comes to dance. There will always be more to improve upon. In order to stay positive and sane, focus on progress instead of perfection.
Look how far you’ve come since your days as a non-dancer. It takes courage to put yourself out there on the dance floor, and you’re doing it. That alone is reason enough to feel pretty darn good about yourself!
4. Practice, practice, practice!
They say it takes about 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert at anything. Picasso didn’t become a great artist overnight. Henry David Thoreau didn’t come out of the womb writing brilliant literature.
Likewise, you won’t become a great dancer without putting in the hours. The wonderful thing is that your love of dance will make practice feel like play rather than work.
Take advantage of studio social dances and meet with your dance partner (or another student from your class) whenever you can. If you can afford it, take some private lessons so your instructor can give you one-on-one guidance.
5. Never let go of the magic
Do you remember the first time you had that magic “oh my goodness I’m dancing and this feels AMAZING” moment? You probably felt really connected with the music, your partner and some inexplicable cosmic force that only dancers can understand. These kind of magic moments are the reason why ballroom dance is so addictive.
Don’t get so caught up in your own head that you forget to enjoy the moment. Keep the magic alive by allowing yourself to get lost in the music, the movement, and the beauty that is ballroom dance.