As much fun and fulfillment we experience as dancers, there are a lot of low moments too. These are the struggles we experience as dancers . It's a long journey to develop our confidence, especially if you're a younger dancer. Dancer struggles don't have to keep you down, below are a few scenarios that most dancers go through and how we can get past them!
Struggles We Experience As Dancers 1: Sharing Your Choreography Online For The World (Wide-Web) To See
NO, AMANDA DID NOT MAKE A NUDE DANCE CONCEPT VIDEO.
She's feeling vulnerable, as anyone feels when you "put yourself out there."
It's terrifying! You are letting yourself be subject to possible judgement and criticism after pouring your heart and soul into this project.
But here's the thing- the act of sharing itself is admirable. The quality of the choreography should be noted too, of course, but there's something generally applaudable about those who are willing to face the fire of sharing their first dance video. You go girl.
(See Related Article: How To Make Amazing Dance Videos)
Besides, I guarantee that you will receive more positive than negative feedback. I don't think I've ever seen a video with more thumbs downs than ups, or outrightly rude comments... And hey, even if you do get a few.. Honestly...
This is yours! My hope is that those who are starting to share their choreography can be confident and unapologetic about doing so. After all, you should be sharing dance videos NOT FOR THE FEEDBACK, BUT JUST TO SHARE. If your end game is to get a bunch of YouTube followers and Facebook likes, just stop. Dancing for the wrong reasons draws your focus on external factors and you won't be able to feel that fulfillment from owning and loving your work.
SO, AMANDA- sit back and relax! Put your phone down for a bit and reply to comments or shares later. You'll annoy everyone, most of all yourself, by placing too much importance on that kind of stuff.
Struggles We Experience As Dancers 2: Getting Stuck While Choreographing A Piece
Everyone has their own ways of choreographing, but we do share a commonality. Choreo block.
The specific type of block that our friend Donovan here is experiencing, is realizing that all his moves are:
- basic, or just
- don't look good /:
It's discouraging when you can look up countless videos of intricate, athletic, creative, amazing choreography but you can't seem to put together 4 counts of grooves. Like what the hell, brain.
Solution to Problem 1. Recycled Moves...
What helps me to be inspired by, but not mimic, choreography, is to take class or watch videos and not focus on the moves themselves, but to understand how the choreographer is interpreting the music.
Solution to Problem 2. Basic B#*&!ness
Simple moves, imho, look great.. Not everything has to be a finger flick or tiny toe swivel. The "basic"ness of a move, imho (again), comes not from the picture itself, but the texture behind it. I've been blown away by someone's ran de jamb before. Grooves are not only fun to do but you can totes add variations for a bit more flavor.
Solution to Problem 3. Ew, wtf?
Okay, but does it FEEL good? Try choreographing without a mirror. If you think about how something looks, before how something feels, no matter how "cool" the picture is, it won't be fun or natural to dance. And things that don't look good probably don't feel good to begin with.
Also you might wanna rethink that man-bun...
(See Related Video: How To Never Get Choreo Block)
Struggles We Experience As Dancers 3: Jitters About Teaching A Dance Workshop
It's such an honor to be able to teach any class or workshop- it means that someone or some group recognized your talents and thought them worth sharing, and maybe even paying you for it. But that doesn't mean that everyone who gets their headshot on a flyer is a great teacher. It doesn't mean that they are even a confident choreographer.
Teaching, especially if you're newer to it (or even for experienced choreographers), can be a nerve-wracking experience. You're in front of a group of people, expected to not only know counts, but be able to describe them perfectly. It's tough! And you have to be positive and encouraging the whole time, too, which is doubly difficult if you're doubting yourself to begin with.
Knowing your Why and What, and finally, exercising the "How," will be great guidelines as you delve into teaching.
(See related article: Taking Dance Class: Things Choreographers Love and Hate From Their Dance Students)
Struggles We Experience As Dancers 4: Feeling Shy Or Introverted In A LOUD Dance Community
It seems that everyone knows everyone who is a friend of a teammate of a brother of a friend. What? There are like 1.5 degrees of separation, at most, in the community.
So if you're just being introduced to the community, or have been involved but are more introverted, it can be overwhelming, especially at big events, to see everyone mix and mingle and catch up with each other.
I don't want to list a bunch of tips on how to make friends. You don't really have to be someone you're not or go to a million parties or kiss anyone's butt. If anything, trying too hard will be futile and obvious, and just end up exhausting you.
(See Related Article: 19 Things That Make Introverted Dancers Anxious)
BUT REALLY, SHY-LA-
It comes with time. Make genuine connections with the people you vibe with. Even if it's a few teammates, cherish those relationships. And be open to meeting new people, but never make being "popular" into a priority. The more time you spend dancing, taking class, just being exposed to dancers- the more you'll naturally make friends and have people to chat with in any setting.
Focus on dance. Focus on yourself. Focus on growth and enjoying the process. The right people will flow in to your life!
Are there struggles or doubts you have that you think others can relate to? Leave a comment below to share with us!If one of your struggles is feeling insecure about your abilities, get your training on at STEEZY Studio today! This article is updated! It was first published on June 25th, 2015.