Courses booking deadline extended

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The courses deadline for booking courses has been extended to Friday 31 July 2020. So if you want to take one of the courses starting early August you still have time to book.

Details of courses are available to download from the Short Online Courses page.

Positive psychology for dance teachers – book now

A brand new course Positive psychology for dance teachers is available to book now. You can download information sheet about this new course from the Short Online Courses page.

Running at the same time will be the popular Teaching dance for health, short online course for dance teachers. Both courses are available to book now on the Book a course page.

During lockdown and as some begin to ease out of lockdown there is an alternative reflective task for the usual taught class or session for teachers who cannot teach live in the studio or community venue.

This is a great opportunity to take some CPD.

Preparation for Performance

Many of you will have already downloaded my booklet on Preparation for Performance but if you haven’t then it is below if you want to download it.

I wrote it for Highland Dancers but the exercises. breathing and all are suitable for all dancers (and teachers). In sport they pay attention to preparing for performance instead of leaving it to chance. We can prepare for performance in dance too whether that be for examination, competitions and to make sure we can do our best in class.

You can use the mental training skills and breathing and relaxation techniques to help your students to prepare for their next performance.

Positive psychology for dance teachers

Work is taking place on a new short online CPD course for dance teachers: Positive psychology for dance teachers. When this new course is available to book details be will posted on this site. Alternately you can contact us to register your interest in Positive psychology for dance teachers.

Positive psychology for dance teachers

The goal of positive psychology in well-being theory,…is to increase the amount of flourishing …

Seligman M E P (2011) Flourish: A new understanding of Happiness and Well-Being – and how to achieve them London Nicholas Brealey Publishing

…to facilitate the flourishing of each individual dancer by valuing them for what they are as well as what they can do.

Botham S (2000) A Dancer is a Person – poster presentation IADMS Conference, Miami, Florida

Current CPD courses

Current short online CPD courses for dance teachers

During lockdown all the short online CPD courses have adjustments made to the week 3 work to enable courses to be completed without the need to teach a class. An adjusted reflective exercise can be done instead of the usual relfections on the taught class or session.

Exploring squats

This video popped into my inbox today and I want to share it with you. Squats per se are not perhaps what many view as a dance move or step but we do dance versions of squats. Pliés may be viewed as a similar type of movement but clearly they are not the same as squats – we don’t want the angle of the body and pelvis as required in a squat to be the same for pliés but we can see how the basic squat strengthens the big muscles of the legs, for example, so dancers may use squats as a strengthening exercise for their dance moves.

I like the fact that the trainer in this video, Aaron Barnett, national trainer for Fitpro team, explains the functional reasons for doing squats – being able to sit down and get up again being a key functional reason for doing squats. He goes on to explore a variety of ways to perform squats, adapting them to take account of anatomy, injury, purpose of performing squat and so on. From a dance teaching perspective it is a useful video to watch and consider how this could be useful in dance teaching.

You might want to watch the video and give some thought to understanding more about the functional aspect of movements that you teach and how this could relate to your dance teaching practice. You may not want to teach squats in the middle of centre work in a ballet class, for example, but can you think of steps and movements that you teach where there could be benefits for both teacher and student from understanding more about functional aspects or adaptations that could be made to suit individuals and their needs?

If you teach dance to older people then you will know that many older people lose muscle tone and strength as they age. Considering the functional aspects and value of dance moves could help older people to continue to perform movements that will help them to retain dignity and independence as they age.

After watching the video you may want to think about some of the teaching ideas presented that you could make use of in your dance teaching practice. Why not share ideas that you have got from this post in the comments below.