How Much is Too Much?
My 8 year old loved to dance. She loved it so much she would dance at home. She would make up dances with her friends, with her sisters and dance during any of her free time. She performed and competed solos and loved every minute. She was dancing about six hours per week at the time but we decided to sign her up for more. We went to a very reputable studio and they wanted her to join a company that attended for six more hours per week. This would make it twelve hours per week for class time, plus one hour of solo time.
After two years, the sparkle started to diminish. My then, 11 almost 12 year old, began to fight me to go to dance at the other studio. Was I doing too much?
The risk of doing too much is a condition known as burnout. Signs may include; consistent unexplained tiredness, a constant feeling of fatigue, excessive sweating, loss of appetite, poor performance, mood swings, increase in illness or injury, difficulty paying attention, poor concentration, disturbed sleep, anxiety, irritability and signs of depression.
Prevention is more effective than treatment and education is an important tool. Effective time management is an important way to help prevent burnout.
At The Dance Academy we maximize every minute our dancers are in the studio. You don’t need to dance for 12-18 hours per week to become an incredible dancer. We ENCOURAGE our dancers to always come prepared. To keep trying, to keep working and striving for the next level. We ENHANCE their dance experience through motivation, character building and excellent technique. We INSPIRE our students by always striving to be role models ourselves, through integrity, hard work and dedication. We will not sacrifice our students technique for more enrollment.
The ability to adapt to many different styles of dance comes when there is good training and technique to build upon. When you make a commitment to quality over quantity and aim for experiences that support your child’s goals and values, you almost always feel confident that your investment will have great returns for your child. gwdancecenter.com, danceadvantage.net
Ask yourself these questions; What do I want out of dance? What is the ultimate goal? Do I have unrealistic expectations? Am I supporting my child’s goals, or my own? Have I paid enough attention, to know whether or not, my child is gaining a good dance education? Am I being sucked into thinking more is better?
Through this experience, I learned, thankfully, that my child had her own goals and wanted to participate in high school dance company and drill team, which she did to its fullest. More important than several hours of dance per week is better technique and well roundedness. Now, she is a rising star with her choreography abilities and an excellent instructor. Dancers of all ages in our dance classes at The Dance Academy, in Lehi, Utah adore her.