Monday, April 04, 2011

Dance Classes - The Benefits are More Than Just Dance Training

Dance Classes – Dance Classes – More Than Just Dance Training

Written by: Ballroom Dancing

Every week, children of all ages attend dance classes. They are filled with hopes and dreams of dancing like their favorite pop stars, rappers, ballerinas and celebrities. Girls and boys alike, energetically take the classes, while parents responsibly make sure they have transportation and the funds to attend.

Weekly classes provide technical training, body alignment, muscle control, rhythm, coordination and structure. The repetition of the training and the discipline of the techniques, create an amazing capability of movement and self-control of ones own body. These are such important elements in a child’s growth.

But what else is it about dance class that is so important to a child?

Structured dance programs give students confidence. When they learn to master a difficult step, technique or routine, it raises their self-esteem and allows them to be proud of something. It will give them the courage to show off the new accomplishment which helps them overcome shyness and feel a sense of appreciation for a job well done.

The exercise element is also a huge factor as to why dance classes are important. In the age of video games, children discover a physical activity that they enjoy doing. Most children have so much happiness about learning and participating in dance class that they do not even realize the extraordinary benefits they are receiving; such as team work, independent thinking, creativity, pride, discipline and structure.

When children are regular participants in a dance program they learn respect. Respect for the instructor, the other children and mostly, themselves. When a child can feel good about themselves, they open their minds to accomplish so many other things that are important for their well-being and healthy mental and physical growth. If you have ever spoken to an adult that attended dance classes as a child, it will be hard to find someone who has a negative opinion about the experience. Most will tell you how much it helped them in certain areas.

There is something special about the environment within a dance studios walls. Over the years, children grow and develop into happy, well-rounded adults. The transformation is beautiful to watch and an even greater experience to be involved in. There is nothing greater in this world than to be part of a child’s healthy, happy growth and development. As a dance teacher, it is my greatest joy.

As a parent, I encourage you to enroll your child in a local dance program. Talk to other parents for referrals and other children for opinions. Its important that the studio be a good fit for your child. Researching will help you make the right choice for both you and your child.

You have enrolled your child and are wondering how you can help make their experience better. Here are a couple handy tips:

Class Placement Proper placement in class is very important. There are a lot of fundamentals and techniques that the dancer must learn and master before they can move to a higher level. You would not enroll a child in algebra if they did not know how to add and subtract. Requesting or demanding that they be placed above their dance level will only discourage them and prevent them from reaching their full potential. Dance technique is not something you can ‘pick up’ along the way. Its a repetitive, structured process that forms a solid foundation for the dancer. Without a good, firm foundation, a dancer is more inclined to be injured and discouraged. Let the professionals place your child.

Class Conduct Bad behavior by your child should not be tolerated. It is not cute or funny when your child is misbehaving. And I can tell you with great confidence that the other parents who are paying for their own children to be learning are not happy with your child’s disruptions. No one thinks it is cute but you. This could be a great learning experience for the child about good and bad behavior and reward and punishment.

Gossip and Criticism Nothing will deflate your child’s experiences more than gossip and criticism. Your child is having a great character-building experience. Don’t tarnish it by constantly talking bad about the other parents, children and especially the instructor. How do you expect your child to ever learn respect for others when you are constantly criticizing the people involved. Gossip and criticism come directly from jealousy and envy and are bad lessons to teach your children. If you are that unhappy with the studio you are free to go somewhere else. If your child is the one gossiping and talking badly, you need to find out what the real problem is and find a solution. Its a great time to teach them about problem solving and how negative thinking and words are not the answer.

Using your child’s experiences and accomplishments from dance are a perfect opportunity for bonding between you and your child. Allow them to enjoy the experience and encourage them to share it with you. You will witness your child transforming into a well-adjusted, respectful, grateful and confident adult. Even if they never pursue a career in dance, the lessons that they will learn will benefit them the rest of their lives.