What being a dancer has taught me

12/16/2020

This is something I have wanted to talk about for a while and I'm so excited that today is finally the day. I have been dancing since I was a toddler, and it truly has shaped me into the person I am today. Dance is a hard sport let's be real here. It takes serious dedication, and you need to be ready to work and put your all into what you're doing. Over the years, my love for dance has grown stronger and stronger. Yes there are challenging days and yes there are days that you are not on your A-game, but those are the days you learn and grow from. I wanted to share with you all some of the lessons I have learned over the years from being a dancer.

1: Be creative and be different. Dance is all about movement and how each individual moves differently. Dance has taught me to want to stand out and not hide in the corner. It has taught me to bring out my creative side and dare to be different. A dance is so amazing on stage because of how everyone takes the choreography and makes it their own.

2: Learn how to take criticism. As a dancer, I am always wanting to improve. In order to improve it's important to allow teachers and peers to give you feedback without taking it too personally. The feedback you're being given is not to make you upset, it's to give you the opportunity to go above and beyond to be the best you can be. Over the years, I have grown as a stronger person and dancer because of my ability to take constructive criticism.

3: Live in the moment. When I'm dancing, nothing else in the world matters. The only thing I am thinking about is how lucky I am to be where I am doing what I love. When I was younger I feel like I took that for granted sometimes. As I get older, I have learned the importance of living in the moment and living every second like it's my last.

4: Always give 100% of what you have. One of my teachers told us that even on your off days you should always give 100% of what you have. This means that you could be having a tiring day where your energy is at 30%, but you should still be giving 100% of that 30% you have that day. This can be applied to so many things in life and is something I try to always remember.

5: Be confident. Over the years I have learned how confidence makes such an impact on your dancing and you're everyday life. When your dancing, being confident means being comfortable with your ability to move and accepting the fact that you won't look like the person next to you. Finding that confidence was the key for me to expand my creativity, and dance as myself instead of trying to look like others.

6: Support others. It is SO important to support your friends. Whether that is at a dance competition, across the floor in class, or when they have exciting things to share, your support means a lot to them just as much as their support means the world to you.

7: Dance friends=forever. I can't even begin to express the love I have for my dance friends. I also can't even put into words the relationship I have with my dance friends. They are my people, my support system. They understand me like no other because we do the same things, and have the same passion. Knowing that they will always have my back is truly the best feeling in the world and I am beyond lucky to have them in my life.

8: It's ok to make mistakes. Dance is all about getting back up and trying again. It's ok to fall, and it's ok to mess up. What's important is learning to get back up and keep trying.

9:Work as a team: A crucial part of being a dancer is having the ability to work together to create something amazing. If one person is missing the whole dance isn't the same. It is important to have an atmosphere full of trust and support to get the end product we all want. Dance has given me the tools I need to work with others and know what it means to be a member of a team.

10: Dance like nobody's watching. This is a saying that goes around my dance studio. I dance because I love to dance. I work extremely hard because I want to improve as a dancer. That love I have for dance makes it easy to dance like nobody's watching. I'm dancing for myself, and because it makes me feel good. That is one of the most valuable lessons I have learned from being a dancer.

My dance friends are the most incredible people I have ever met. Going to dance almost every day is exciting because I get to see my best friends and bond over what we love to do. I wanted to allow them to share about why dance is important to them and talk about the lessons they have learned over the years. So that's what I did! Here are some of my best friends telling you what dance means to them:)

Isabelle Shub: I love dance because of the community. We all come together despite our different backgrounds to work together as a team. Over the many years, we've spent together, we have all become best friends and that is what makes the days and nights together so enjoyable!

Talie Membrino: Dance is my 2nd home. It's taught me so much over the years and I am forever grateful for a place to let go of outside stress. But more than anything I cherish the people that I have been so lucky to meet and call my best friends.

Emma Thorp: It's SO hard to pick just one lesson out of the millions that dance has taught me, but one thing I know I would not have without dance is confidence. Mastering a move I had previously struggled with or finally getting to perform a routine that I feel good about onstage with my friends truly makes me feel like I'm on top of the world. Dance has allowed me to become more comfortable with myself and has helped me realize that you really just have to give it all or nothing!

Emma Goldstone: Dance means so much to me, it's what I look forward to every day and it's so important to me! Dance is important to me because not only does it give me a way to express myself and move around a little but it's so much fun! Everyone has such a good attitude and it truly wouldn't be as fun without everyone in my classes. Dance has taught me how important it is to have a good attitude even when it's not my favorite class everyone makes it so much fun and has such a good attitude that I don't mind. Dance has become such a big part of my life and I don't know what I would do without it!

Avery Golub: My love for dance has grown every year. Dancing gives me a feeling of happiness and relief like nothing else I've ever experienced. It stretches my mind and challenges me to push myself, yet I never feel intimidated by the challenges. It excites me. I am thankful for all of the opportunities dance has given me and for the truly amazing people, I have met along the way.

Claudia Snider: Dance has so many aspects to it that has helped me grow not only as a dancer but also as a person. There's never a stopping point where I don't have anything left to work on (from technique to confidence to flexibility there's always something :)) AND I love that I always know that everyone is there for each other to watch each other improve.

Sydney Diloreto: I love dance because it's truly a place where I can express myself. Dance wise, it is so freeing to just let yourself move and it's truly one of the best feelings in the world. Socially, the people are some of the most amazing I've ever met. They are like my second family and I can do anything around them and still feel completely surrounded by love.

Riley Newman: Dance is important to me because it has brought me together with my best friends. I have grown up with these girls and they have been by my side since I was three. Side by side we learned who we were and who we wanted to become and that is an experience that I wouldn't trade for the world.

Isabella Zeyben: In the 14 amazing years I've been dancing, I have learned more than U ever have, but the most important thing to me is the friends I have made through it all. I found sisters who will last me a lifetime, and I could never thank the dance community we are all a part of enough for bringing these wonderful people into my life.

Victoria Rivard: Dancing has given me the tools to express myself through movement and I couldn't be more grateful. It serves as an escape yet it teaches me to be present, compassionate, and disciplined. The community I have found through dance has only deepened my love for the art form and is a defining reason as to why I am pursuing dance through a musical theater major.

Annie Huckabone: Throughout my life dance has taught me what it means to be myself. I used to be so wrapped up in how I looked in the mirror and if I looked the same as everyone else when in reality no one cares what you look like when you dance. Therefore you should dance the way you feel like you should dance! Dance is the one place I feel happy, and confident with my best friends and I can forget about all of my worries!

Kyra Randazzo: I think the biggest thing dance has taught me is that other people can't determine your worth. Dance brings out the best in all of us and allows us to be free and free-spirited. Once I learned that you are trying to beat your own records and not the records of other people, I saw that everyone else was doing the same. This led me to see that I am the only person who can determine my worth and know when I am doing my best even if others don't believe so. I try to apply this philosophy to all aspects of my life but I learned it all from dance.

The lessons we have all learned from being dancers are lessons we will have with us forever. Dance gives us the courage to be who we are, and step outside out comfort zones. Most importantly, it has given us the opportunity to express my feelings through movement. I will forever be thankful for the opportunity dance has given me, and hope that the memories I have made will last with me forever. 💕💃

xoxo Rebekah