10 Quick Tips for Overcoming Dancer Nerves

All dancers get nervous before a big audition, performance or advanced class. To help with this, here are…

10 Quick Tips for Overcoming Your Nerves

  1. Take some deep breathes (You hear this all the time, but it helps.)

  2. Focus on one thing you want to accomplish.

  3. Stretch extensively beforehand so your body is ready to go.

  4. Think positive thoughts so your mind is ready too.

  5. Look at this as a learning experience and just do the best you can.

  6. Stay away from negative people.

  7. Dedicate your performance to someone else.

  8. Have a grateful attitude (You are lucky to have this opportunity!)

  9. Picture yourself doing a great job before you start.

  10. Let it go! This is not the end of the world. It’s dance!

I’ll write more about these tips in the future, but this will give you a “cheat sheet” to review before you leave for your next big audition, performance or dance class!

Knock ’em dead!


3 Tips to Be a Better Dance Partner

Whether you are dancing with a partner for fun, in a ballroom dance competition or for a job, it’s essential to follow a few guidelines in order to have fun and give a good performance. With this in mind, think about these three points before you hit the dance floor:

  • Follow the Leader.

Are you used to being the leader and having other dancers follow you? Well, with ballroom dance and partnering, it’s essential to establish who the leader is so that there is definitely a leader and a follower.

If you are following a leader, make sure you do just that. Pay attention to the signals and weight changes he or she gives you so you can move accordingly. Not only will this allow you to dance smoothly, but you’ll know exactly where you need to go and when.

  • Don’t Forget to Count.

While you may be distracted about an upcoming lift or difficult move while dancing, try to stay in the moment. Your partner will be giving you important signals based on the counts in the music and the choreography. And since ballroom dance is based on different timing and counts, depending on the music and style of dance you are doing, it’s essential to remember to count.

  • Try to Relax.

While it can be difficult to execute some ballroom and partnering choreography, don’t let it show! Remember to have fun and try to relax. If you are tense, it will show in your movements (and probably on your face too).

In fact, if you are stressed out and tight, you may not even be able to execute some of the movements necessary for your dance!

Sometimes, this is easier said than done so try to practice controlling your nerves in advance.

Can you focus on a happy place or person while you are dancing?

Perhaps, you can try deep breathing before you perform?

Some nerves will always be present when you perform. It’s up to you to learn how to change them into good energy instead of having them ruin your dance.


When you do partner work, it can be nerve-wracking. There are fast movements, timing issues, weight changes, lifts, and more for you to think about.

Try to stay focused. Let the leader lead, keep counting while you dance and try to relax. It’s also important to practice as much as possible so you feel comfortable with your partner, and your routine, before a big performance.

After all, if you focus on what you should be doing at the moment, you’ll be much more likely to avoid drops and stepped on toes. And more important, you’ll give a great performance and actually have fun in the process!

For more on ballroom dance tips, click here.


Private Dance Class – Scare or Success?

You get to dance class early and warm up.

The minutes tick by, and you notice that the
other students are not there. It seems that
everyone is out sick today, and you get a private lesson
from your dance teacher!

Now, many of you may be thinking, “Oh No!”

Your knees start knocking, and your hands shake. The pressure is on,
and you know you will need to give 100% – whether you feel like
it or not.

This has happened to me numerous times. In fact, it occurred this
past Wednesday in ballet. At first, I think:

“Great. I would have a private, dance class today. I don’t have a lot of
energy because I’ve been working all morning.

And then, I snap out of it. After all, this is a wonderful opportunity
to work on the movements I have trouble with and get one-on-one
training from the dance teacher without paying extra for it!

Now if you are shy and have a difficult time in this type of
situation, here are some tips to help you relax and take advantage
of the situation:

  • Focus on your dance technique.

 Listen to what your dance teacher tells you, and follow his or her
instruction and corrections.

  • Relax.

Try not to get too uptight about being the only one in dance class.
Instead, take a deep breath and concentrate on your movements.

Think about what you are doing, and it will take your mind
off of the fact that you are the only student there today.

And remember. Your dance teacher wants to help you, and this
is an opportunity for him or her to give you specific instructions
and help you improve.

After all, the studio owner could have easily cancelled class.
Instead, the instructor has chosen to help you!

  • Remember what you learn.

When class is over, write down what you learned. This way,
you can review and practice the steps and movements you
need to work on when you get home.

Private Classes Rock!

By having a private lesson with your instructor, you’ll learn
exactly what you need to do to improve.

:so even if your instructor scares you, take advantage of the
situation. Try to relax, focus on what you are doing and listen
to what your teacher tells you.

After all, the whole purpose of taking a dance class is to have
fun and improve your technique. And if you have a private lesson,
you’ll learn exactly what you need to do to fix bad habits and
become a better dancer.

With this in mind, when you discover you will
have a private lesson, think of it as winning the lottery. After
all, you may learn the secret tips you need to master that quadruple
pirouette and dance circles around the competition!


Be Part of the Ballroom Dance Comeback!

If you’ve ever wanted to try dancing with a partner like they do on television shows like “Dancing with the Stars,””So You Think You Can Dance,”the “Dancesport”ballroom dance competitions, and others, now is a great time to get started.

And if you are training in classical ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop, or another form of dance, ballroom will give you a completely different education on partnering that can help increase your strength and overall, dance ability.

A form of partner dancing once reserved for the upper classes, ballroom has been around since the early 1800s. Over the years, its popularity has gone up and down due to social, economic and music-style changes. And today, it’s a hot, new way to stay in shape.

Want to Learn Ballroom Dance?


Well, that’s easy! There are ballroom studios all of the country that provide many choices. You can attend one of the big, chain studios like Arthur Murray, or look at small studios or private instructors in your local area.

It all depends on what you are looking for, your level of comfort and what you want to learn. In fact, you’ve probably passed a local dance studio in your area many times without really noticing it was there!

To find the right classes for you, conduct some research online first. Some helpful sites include http://www.wdcdance.com/, http://www.swingdancecouncil.com/, http://accessdance.com/dance_lessons/ and http://www.ballroomdancers.com/Dances/.

Also, ask people for recommendations and check out our list of “The Top 10 Questions To Ask a Dance Instructor”here before signing up for classes. You’ll want to know about all of the expenses involved in advance including: lesson costs, shoe and clothing requirements, time commitments, and more.

No Dance Partner? No Problem!

And here’s more good news. If you are not attending a ballroom class because you don’t have a partner, don’t let that stop you!

While it’s fun to learn new dance styles with friends and family members, most studios do not require that you bring a dance partner with you to class. You can learn some of the top forms of ballroom dance like Rumba, Mambo, Cha Cha, Waltz, Foxtrot, Swing, and many others on your own, and meet a partner at the studio, dance club or a ballroom dance-event later. Once you join the dance community, it’s easy to find other dancers looking for partners!

Give Ballroom Dance a Try Now!

If you love watching the dancers on television, why not give it a try? You have nothing to lose, and even if you have two left feet, it’s a great way to have fun, get some exercise, listen to good music, and meet new people!


Check Out These Dance Resources

Dance on Television

“America’s Best Dance Crew”

“America’s Got Talent”

“Dancing with the Stars”


“So You Think You Can Dance”

Dance Music

2010 Dance Grammy Winners


Top 100 iTunes Dance Songs, OntheRadio.net 

Dance Training

Los Angeles:

Debbie Allen Dance Academy

Debbie Reynolds Studio

Edge Performing Arts Center

Los Angeles Ballet Academy

Lula Washington Dance Theatre

Millenium Dance Complex

The Performing Arts Center

Third Street Dance

Stay tuned for more…