A dancer’s bag is a world of its own. An Irish dancer’s bag even more so. If somebody turned your dance bag over and shook its contents out, what would they find? What, in fact, can you carry in your dance bag to help you through your time in the studio? Until scientists develop a way to carry around perfect turn-outs and feis smiles, here are a couple of essentials every Irish dancer shouldn’t even consider leaving the house without.
You might think this one goes without a saying but trust me – I know an awful lot of dancers who are too lazy to carry their heavy shoes in their bags and simply go through their steps in their soft shoes. Bad idea. Make yourself carry that extra weight every time and you won’t have to dread messy trebles and bad timing. Marking your steps is good when you have no other option, but in the long run you have to be used to performing your steps in heavies too.
You thought there might be one blog post without mentioning hydration? Wrong. Water is essential part of your dancing bag and you know it. Avoid coffee or fizzy drinks as those will only make you thirstier and you will probably soon become dehydrated. Also avoid energy drinks, as they are usually full of sugar. Plain, ordinary H2O and maybe just a squeeze of lemon in it is all you need.
There’s hardly a thing that tastes better than an energy bar after a long dance practice. Dark chocolate and bananas are also acceptable and recommendable. If you feel your energy levels dropping, you can even eat it during the class.
You never know when something might need fixing and it is a well known fact that anything can be fixed with electric tape. If you can’t fix it with electric tape – then you’re not using enough electric tape.
I saw a friend using a notebook to jot down every comment she gets from her TC, everything she notices herself and generally anything dance related she fancied, a design for a new solo dress, an inspirational quote, feis results, and I immediately loved the idea! It’s always good to keep track of your progress; it’s an excellent way of motivating yourself with some actual figures.
Because a dancer without the music is a strange concept indeed.
Especially during the long summer hours. No amount of air conditioning can stop you from sweating, especially if you do drink a lot of water as suggested previously. Use it to wipe out your face every once in a while, because you don’t want the sweat drops all over your floor, making it slippery and possibly dangerous.
Photo credit: Flickr user AngryJulieMonday
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