Must-Know Dancer Hacks


As dancers, we are constantly faced with struggles that don't haunt the general population. We seem to be in constant fear of panty lines, slipper shoes, and blisters. That's why we've come up with this list of helpful hacks to help you prevent and avoid known dancer conundrums. 

1) Slippery Shoes

If you've ever danced in new shoes or on a slick floor, you know that slipping can be a huge problem. Try these sure-fire remedies for slip prevention:

  1. ​Hairspray the bottom of your shoes.
  2. Scuff the shoes on concrete.
  3. Don't let the first time you dance in the shoes be during your tech rehearsal.

2) Prevent makeup from running

Performance makeup is usually quite different than what you put on your face on a regular day. Try these hacks out to ensure your makeup stays picture perfect all performance long. 

  1. ​Don't use oily moisturizer before putting your makeup on. 
  2. Use primers before apply your makeup -- it really does help.
  3. Blot your lipstick after applying to keep it from smudging, and maybe even consider using a stain for both the lips and the cheek bones. 
  4. Spray a little bit of hair spray over your makeup when it's all done, but make sure to keep your mouth closed.

3) Help bobby pins stay in 

If you aren't blessed with curly or kinky hair, you may struggle with bobby pins constantly slipping. If that's you, try out this simple hack. Simply hair spray your bobby pins before placing them in your hair. This will ensure that they hold their place as well as your hair. 

4) Prevent blisters: deodorant on your heel 

Blisters are an unavoidable pain of life for dancers and non-dancers alike, but as dancers we're definitely more prone to these nasty little irritations. To prevent blisters, try rubbing deodorant or chapstick on your heel where the blister is trying to form. This trick makes all the difference, and your feet will thank you for it. 

5) Stop tears in your tights

Rip! That's the sound of your new tights ripping after only wearing them once. No worries, they're salvageable if you get to the tear before it gets too big. 
Take clear nail polish and paint the edges of the frayed tights or ribbon. This won't fix the tear, but it will prevent it from getting bigger. You can also try spraying hairspray on the affected area to harden the edges and to secure further ripping.

6) Water: sipping through the straw

Being well hydrated is essential to performing at your highest level. We often get wrapped up in rehearsals or workshops and forget to drink, or if we do get a drink it's just a sip.To get more water in your system in a brief amount of time, use a straw. Using the straw is a much more efficient way to get water into are hardworking bodies. 

7) Sponge ice pack 

This is a less messy and more economical version of the icepack. This genius idea allows you to have ready to go icepacks for those times when muscles get tight or injuries occur, and it won't break the bank. You can go to the dollar store and buy one or two packs of sponges. Then soak the sponges in water and place them in ziplock bags. As the water melts, the sponge absorbs it, making less mess. Make a therapeutic ice pack by adding a few drops of essential oil to the sponge before freezing. 

8) Schedule everything and pack the night before

Life can get crazy busy when you've got rehearsals, performances, auditions, and everything in between. Give these helpful planning tips a try to make sure nothing important falls through the cracks. Download a scheduling app like Wunderlist to help you plan your week. This app is fantastic for creating daily checklist and delineating tasks to different days throughout the week to ensure everything on your list gets done. 

9) Remembering choreography

Remembering choreography comes naturally for some, and for others it's a constant struggle. If you want to improve on your ability to pick up choreography and remember it, try these techniques.

  1. Take classes often -- Taking classes frequently is the best way to practice picking up choreography and remembering it right on the spot. 
  2. Spend 5-10 minutes going over your performance choreography every day, even if the performance is months away. This allows the choreography to become second nature, so when the nerves set it, your body still automatically knows what to do.

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