Spring Cleaning Your Dance Bag

Spring has sprung and you know what that means…spring cleaning!

Ah yes, the dreaded time of year where we have to acknowledge the clutter we’ve let accumulate throughout the year. Your room is a mess, the laundry is piled high, and your dance bag is barely zipping closed it’s so full. The season of renewal and rebirth inspires us all to get our things in line and clean up.

First thing on the list, your dance bag. It’s full of granola bar wrappers, loose bobby pins, worn out pads for your feet, used athletic tape, tights with holes in them, and that old pair sock that definitely need to visit the washing machine.

Below are four things you can do to spruce up your dance bag and keep it clean throughout the year.

1. Unpack those unhealthy snacks.

We’re all guilty of leaving those candy wrappers at the bottom of our dance bags. We all need a pick-me-up every now and then, so it can be easy to reach for the sweet stuff when selecting a snack.

But instead of reaching for the sweets, grab a handful of nuts. We love flavored nuts that are sweet and give us that sugar fix we’re craving. If you don’t like nuts or are allergic, another great option is sugar-free gum!

 

2. Up-cycle your old tights.

Take all of those old pairs of tights with runs and holes in them, and turn them into something new! Make a sachet with potpourri to keep in your dance bag to keep things smelling fresh. You can also cut the tops of the waistband to turn into a makeshift hair tie or scrunchie if you ever are in a pinch. Check out a list of things you can do with your old tights here.

 

3. Zip up the small things!

Don’t let the bottom of your dance bag be a graveyard of bobby pins and hair ties. Get a small zipper bag to hold your essentials so you don’t lose them. Keep your deodorant, face wipes, hair ties, bobby pins, bandages and tape, and any other small items inside one of these little bags.

That way, when you need something, you don’t have to fish around in your bag. You’ll know right where they are every time, and it’ll prevent clutter in the future too!

 

4. Keep it clean.

When you sit down to clean your dance bag, take a minute to empty the whole thing out. Dump out the loose crumbs and any trash you might’ve missed. Take a baby wipe or a damp towel and wipe your bag down for extra freshness. While you’ve got the baby wipes or a towel out, go ahead and throw them in your bag.

Use the baby wipes to freshen up your face after dancing. Removing all of the sweat and dirt from your face can keep your skin clear and healthy. Having a towel on hand can also be really helpful. You can use it to dab your sweat, dry your face after washing it, or keep it at the bottom of your bag to line it.

We hope these spring cleaning tips inspire you to dump out your dance bag and clean it up! A clean bag is a clean mind.

Share your photos of your dance bag and how you organize it with us! Use the hashtag #PNDCDancer. We are on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Dance Resolutions for 2017

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The holidays are officially over and it’s time to get back to the grind. Have you taken a moment to think about your goals and aspirations for 2017? If not, we’re here to help you create those goals and make 2017 your best year yet! Here are five great resolution ideas to help you build toward a happy and healthy dance future in the New Year.

1. Focus on getting stronger.

It’s important to do strength-building activities to help you grow stronger which, in turn, helps you perform better on stage. Check out these ideas from Dance Spirit.

2. Listen to your body. 

If something hurts, make sure to tell your teacher or coach and never dance through the pain. Addressing the pain early on could help prevent more serious injuries in the future.

3. Get out of your comfort zone. 

This could mean performing that hip-hop solo instead of your usual contemporary, or maybe even auditioning for a new team or production. Your life truly begins when you step outside of your comfort zone — go for it!

4. Pick one move you’d like to perfect and stick to it. 

Rather than trying to work on ten different things at once, pick one thing at a time and give it your undivided attention. Once you have perfected this move, continue on down your list to the next thing.

5. Relax and have fun!

We dance because it’s fun! Try not to get too caught up in the stress of practice and competition and remember why you started dancing in the first place.  

Have you made some New Year’s Dance Resolutions of your own? We’d love to hear! Share them with us on Facebook and Twitter!

 

Back to School 101: How to Choreograph Your Classes

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School is back, and that means one thing: Lots of scheduling. Between school, homework, and dance class, it can be hard to figure out how to manage your time. But don’t worry – we have some ideas for you.

1) When in doubt, write it out.

You might think you can memorize your entire schedule in your head – and maybe you can! But you don’t have to. Find a way to write down your schedule so you can glance at it quickly when you need it. Many people use their phones or email for reminders. You can also use a good, old-fashioned day planner. Write down all of your commitments – maybe even color-code them! You’ll be surprised at how quickly you gain control over your hectic schedule.

2) Education over extracurriculars.

You won’t find bigger fans of dance than us. But during the school year, it’s important to prioritize your schoolwork over any extracurricular activities so you don’t fall behind. Dancing is hard work and requires a lot of practice and commitment – but so do your classes. Take the time to finish your homework and give your education the attention it deserves.

3) Veg with the veggies.

 Dancers already know the value of eating well. But this becomes especially important during the school year. The right foods will make you healthier, which will allow you to think more clearly and have the energy you need to handle school and dance. We’re not saying you can’t enjoy a little ice cream once in a while – but keep everything in moderation. Find a buddy to commit to eating healthy with you and keep each other accountable during the year and at dance class.

What do you think? How do you stay organized during the school year? Tell us below!

What’s In Your Dance Bag? A Dancer’s Guide to Competition Survival

Every dancer knows that the dance bag is one of the most important things to keep organized during competition season. You travel a lot, have limited time to get ready for your next routine, and must be prepared to pin back a stray lock of hair to keep that ballerina bun up to code. Your dance bag holds everything you need for competitions, and you need to keep it well-stocked.

Everyone’s bag will be a little different, but let’s look at a few must-haves when it comes to your dance supplies. 

 

1) Dance Shoes

This may seem like a no-brainer, but you must remember to pack all the shoes you will need! Jazz, tap, ballet – forgetting even one could be disastrous. Make a checklist of all the shoes you will use for your performances and mark them off as you pack them in your bag. While you’re at it, throw some extra tights in there – you can never have too many pairs.

 

2) Make Up Bag and Hair Accessories

Have you ever noticed that your hair or makeup tends to need attention moments before you perform? You need to be able to touch up your look quickly and easily. Organize your make up, hair pins, brush, hair ties, jewelry, and any other accessories you need inside your bag so you can grab them quickly when you need a fresh swipe of mascara.

 

3) Toiletries

Nothing is worse than looking around for the source of a bad smell, only to realize the smell is coming from you. Dancing is hard work, and you’ll break a sweat and then some before you’re halfway done for the day. Add some deodorant, perfume, towels, and anti-bacterial soap to your bag before you leave for your next competition.

 

4) Snacks and Water

You never know when you might need to raise your blood sugar or rehydrate during a competition. Keep a variety of healthy snacks, like protein bars, nuts, or fruit inside your bag so you can have a small snack anytime you need it. We highlight some of our favorite snacks and recipes here.

Don’t forget the water bottles, too. Staying hydrated is crucial for a dancer, especially during a competition.

 

5) First Aid Supplies

An unexpected scrape can happen anytime, so throw a few Band Aids in your bag, along with some antibiotic ointment and some antiseptic wipes. You can pick up a basic First Aid kit in your grocery store and add it to your bag before you leave so it will be right on top. If you take any medications, be sure you include those as well. Once the competition starts, you may not have a chance to leave, so you want to have everything you need available immediately.

 

Sound off: What else goes in your bag, dancers? Are there a few essentials that we didn’t cover? Let us know in the comments, or give us a shout on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.