Present Tense Fitness
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Dance and Sports Performance

Strength training and conditioning approaches for dancers

Posts tagged body composition
Four Dancer Concerns, Corresponding Strength and Conditioning Solutions

Younger dancers in particular often need help learning when to breathe, when to brace, and when to use a martial arts-style exhale to produce maximum power. Counterintuitively, the work our people do on the yoga mat reinforces this connection between breath and power by installing a sense of mindfulness around breath. You can’t use breath effectively if you’re not in touch with it. That’s one of the ways we use yoga to help a dancer perform at her peak.

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Dancer Muscle and Job Security

Dancers are told they need to be skinny. They’re told they need to cross train. They’re told they need to do Pilates. They’re told they need to be in good condition. They’re told they need to be strong. But they’re not told how to do so many of these things in a healthy way. When we first started down this road of helping dancers, we were told that dancers “already had the help they needed.” But we knew this to be a lie—because we had taken the time to do the research and to talk to dancers.

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Dancing and Body Composition

My priority as a strength coach is to simplify matters and find efficiencies for my dancers and athletes as much as possible. The good news is, we have data, experience, and research from thousands of athletes around the world—and an increasing amount of this work is being done with women specifically in mind. So if we synthesize Abbie Smith-Ryan’s work with some of this other research and best practices, we begin to see a picture emerge for what healthy body composition strategies look like for dancers.

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