Congratulations on participating in a dance competition!! It’s a very big deal and it can be a bit overwhelming–whether this is your first competition or not. To make the experience go smoothly, there are a host of things you should do prior to the actual event. At Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Raleigh, our instructors have a lot of experience both in participating in competitions themselves as well as guiding our student dancers through the process.
Based on our experience, we have compiled our best dance competition preparation tips for you to get through the experience as stress free as possible. Not only are we giving you tips, we have included a list of regional and national competitions with dates for you to peruse. Let’s look at our dance competition tips!
Plan Your Calendar Accordingly
When you know the date for the competition you can plan other activities accordingly. You will need to clear a lot off your plate the week before and the week of the dance competition in order to focus on the event. There is no need to participate if you aren’t going to give it the attention it needs.
Being ready means that you are putting in the practice and time in order to feel prepared. You will still be nervous leading up to the event. But, when you know that you have put in the time and practice, you will feel less stressed. Feeling ready can be something that you feel after the competition. You know that you danced through the pressure and you are ready for the next one!
Create a Personal Dance Competition Survival Kit
Put together a survival kit that will help you remain calm and relaxed for the competition. Think about the items that create an environment that is conducive for the reduction of stress. Maybe you will include such things as specific music to listen to, a favorite snack, a soothing eye mask, deep breathing, and meditation.
Remain Focused on Your Goals
It’s easy to get distracted by other dancers talking about their routines as you get closer to the day of competition. Focus on your individual goals and strengths, not in comparing yourself to others. Focus is an important part of dance competition preparation.
Preparing with lots of practice for a dance competition can be hard on your body. It’s so important to be sure you are taking care of your health during the time leading up to the event. Maintain a healthy diet with good nutrition. Eat all the things that are good for you and help you stay strong like plenty of protein and veggies. If you happen to catch a cold or flu, take a break and get plenty of rest. You may feel that you can’t afford to decrease your practice, but resetting will get you back on track sooner. A couple of weeks taken off is better than pushing yourself and feeling less than par for a month!
Be sure you are staying hydrated while you are preparing to compete. Of course, we know that water intake is crucial to maintaining good health overall, but this is especially so when you are leading up to a competition. However, don’t overdo it the day of the event! Drinking an excess of water immediately before the competition can make you feel faint. Just focus on getting an adequate amount of water during the prep weeks and you will be in tip-top shape!
Check Your Costume
Be sure you have your costume(s) in good condition as well as undergarments. Bring an extra pair of tights in case a pair gets torn. These are some other items you may want to have on hand just for maintenance and mishaps:
- Small sewing kit
- Safety pins
- Lint brush
- Static Guard
- Stain-removal pen
- Double-sided tape
Stay Calm and Have Fun
You will be nervous about the competition, but the adrenaline is actually very helpful. It’s when you are overwrought with nerves that isn’t good for your performance. Competing requires you to be able to handle the nervousness and push through. Do things prior to getting on the dance floor that will help calm you such as playing your relaxing music prior or spending time on deep breathing exercises. And, don’t forget to have fun. Enjoy the experience! Pat yourself on the back for engaging in the competition. Be nice to yourself and, regardless of the outcome, know that you have really accomplished something when it is over!
Dance Competitions 2021
Many of the regional dance competitions scheduled in 2021 have already sold out! But, here is a current list of the competitions that are still open (as of late March):
May 1-2 Rockingham, NC – 80% full
May 7-9 Henderson, NC – 60% full
March 26-28 Daphne, AL
April 9-11 Montgomery, AL
April 16-18 Columbus, GA
April 23-25 Charlotte, NC
April 30-May 2 Kannapolis, NC
May 7-9 Dublin, GA
May 14-16 Auburn, AL
March 26-28 Knoxville, TN
April 9-11 Spartanburg, SC
April 23-25 Asheville, NC
April 30-May 2 Columbia, SC
May 7-9 Spartanburg, SC
June 24-27 Greensboro, NC
July 15-18 Pigeon Forge, TN
July 23-25 Eden, NC
July 5-9 Savannah, GA
June 28-July 3 Pigeon Forge/Sevierville, TN
Call Us for Guidance and Instruction
Are you interested in preparing for a competition? Even if you are just starting out and competition isn’t in your scope (yet), our professional instructors have expertise in guiding you toward meeting your goals–whatever they may be. Dancing opens up many opportunities to broaden and expand your life! Give us a call at 919-489-4313.