(Photo Courtesy of Absolute Dance Company)

Photo Courtesy of Absolute Dance Company

Online Dance Classes

April 20, 2020

If you’ve ever been around any sort of athlete, you know how much practice and dedication goes into their craft. The countless hours they drill, the different forms of training they utilize, and the strict schedules they follow.  Every sport requires diligence but with the global pandemic, dancers have had to change their routine.

Dance, like any other sport, can be extremely fun and engaging when continually working on skills. Also like other sports, breaks are excessively difficult to make up for. Some dancers and physical therapists would argue taking a break from dance and then returning is much harder than other sports due to physical demands. InsuranceProviders.com conducted a study to identify the most physically demanding jobs in the United States by analyzing strength, stamina, flexibility, and coordination.  “Dancers scored 100 out of 100 in stamina, flexibility and coordination categories, and 87.8 out of 100 for strength,” according to this study. So while you won’t see a ballerina outlifting a football player, they are likely to outdo them in other aspects. 

If you were to talk to a dancer, most commonly you would find out that they dance year round. Unlike other sports, there are no off-seasons in dance. For many dancers, as long as you can keep moving you are meant to be dancing. Not to say that dancers won’t take breaks for mental health or other reasons, but it is not written into the dance schedule to get breaks longer than a month. 

With this kind of dedication to excellency, what are dancers to do during quarantine? Should they just focus on keeping their flexibility by stretching on their own? Should they dance around the house for fun? Should they sleep a lot so they can dream about getting back to the studio ASAP?  Yes, to all of those! But they should also look into online dance courses. There are numerous places to take virtual dance classes, local and not. What about people who aren’t dance studio dancers? This applies to them too. Dance is about inclusion and fun!

Absolute Dance Company, run by Theresa Kahl, is offering free classes on Zoom. The styles range from ballet to hip hop to improv. There are plenty of options for all age types. The classes are taught by Absolute Dance Company staff who are experienced in the genres they teach, and many have the degrees to back ‘em.  

Kahl explains that while “…there was absolutely no wanting to make a switch to online format…” it was essential to stay connected with the dancers and their families. She continued by explaining it’s hard to be motivated to take classes with big name world dancers through other options because of the lack of personal connections. Kahl expressed, “I have found that meeting with my students has given me a sense of familiarity to what is normal in my world as well as vice versa for them.” 

 while there may be a lack of space in the dance area, the online dance classes create a closeness with dance families.

Ellianna Bellmont, Central High School student and Absolute Dance dancer, says, “I’ve enjoyed the online classes. It gives me a chance to see some of my friends and my teachers. It’s something familiar in this new and difficult time.”

 Kahl hopes to involve guest instructors like Michelle Edgar Enos, a former Absolute Dance teacher who has since moved to Michigan, to diversify the program even more and to unite the dancers. 

There are plenty of dance instructors providing their own classes via Instagram Live.  Now, navigating what classes to take are a little more difficult since the classes may come and go before one realizes.  Adam Parson, choreographer based out of Los Angeles, California, has taught two IG Live dance classes so far and plans to teach more. Parson tends to post a picture a day or two before the class to let people know when he will be teaching. 

Other famed instructors like Jojo Gomez and Aliya Janell are utilizing FulloutTv to teach their classes. Unlike the previous options, FulloutTv does cost some money. For example, one could “rent” a dance class for $5 and have access to it for 48 hours. There are different prices for different options. If one were to try and replicate their previous dance schedule, often around nine classes a week, this option may be too expensive. These classes are great for people looking to learn some fun combos but may not be following an extensive schedule, unless of course they are willing to pay full price. 

With so many options, how could anyone choose? Luckily no one has to dedicate themselves entirely to one single online dance curriculum. The hope would be for dancers to try out as many as they would like to, to keep the passion for dance alive, and the strength of their technique.

 

For even more dance class options visit here. 

 

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