Americans do not exercise enough. Experts say that fewer than 5% get 30 minutes of aerobic exercise every day, as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Fewer than 33% get as much physical activity as they should in any given week. One way to make sure you are getting all the exercise you need is to dance competitively.
There are a lot of benefits to be gained when you learn to dance. Whether it is the rumba, samba or any of the types of ballroom dances, dance training is a healthy thing to get into. Dancing professional and dance instructor, Bree Haffen, offers these reasons to dance competitively:
- Dance competitions give people a chance to dance on stage in front of an audience. Dance competitions are really where “the rubber hits the road” in dancing. When people dance competitively, they are able to take what they learn in their dance lessons and see how they are received by professional dance judges. Rehearsals for these competitions are taken more seriously than general dance lessons and people learn to work better with their partners. The whole experience becomes more professionals and rewarding.
- These events give dancers a real sense of how they are progressing. The judges for dance competitions give the participants get feedback that has been personalized to their performance. These reviews and this feedback can be crucial for helping dancers get better at their art. It can also be extremely rewarding to hear the positive comments made by professional judges for dance competitions. People who dance competitively gain a lot of valuable insight into their choreography.
- Dance competitions give people a chance to make connections in the industry. For young dancers who want to do this professionally, there are few ways that are better for making the needed connections than going to dance competitively. Like any profession, it is often who and not what you know that makes the difference between success and failure. Going to dance competitions can really help people get to know the movers and shakers in the industry. The more people you can get to meet in the world of dance, the better. The more people who see you dance and like what they see, the better. Dance competitions are wonderful for networking.
- When you dance competitively, you can open yourself up to new opportunities. Dancers who spend time dancing competitively, get more exposure to new opportunities than those who do not. These may include learning about dance scholarships, new opportunities to audition for shows and information about conventions and other dance competitions. There are not many places where you can have as much access to such a diverse number of opportunities to grow and improve your dancing skills than when working through the dance competition process. Between the intense rehearsals you will do before to the feedback you get from professional judges and the information and opportunities to gain access to, dance competitions are very important in helping people advance their dance careers or improve their experience with the art and sport.
- Competing makes you better. When you dance competitively, you will get better. It forces dancers to work harder and strive to get better. The rehearsals they do before the dance competition are more intense and more focused than any other classes or general rehearsals. Knowing that the end result will be judged and critiqued by profession dance judges inspires most dancers to work harder to get to be better. People train harder before these competitions than they train for anything else, including shows. This is an important benefit to participating in these kinds of events. If you want to take your dance skills to the next level, this is one good way to do that.
Some people do not believe that competitive dance is a real sport. Others say that it is the hardest sport out there. They cite the amount of training that dancers need to do, they often do the same kinds of weight training workouts and outside aerobic conditioning work outs that dancers do to stay in top physical shape.
It does not matter which side of the debate you find yourself, at the end of the day, when you dance competitively, you do get into great physical shape.