Monday, July 10, 2017

A Parent's Guide to Surviving Dance Competitions Ohio

By Dennis Russell

The world of competitive dance is full of fun and excitement. It can also be full of stress and heartbreak as well. If you are a dance parent who is just beginning to take your child to dance competitions Ohio, here are a few tips and tricks that you can use to make the experience a fun and memorable one for all the right reasons.

You need to be aware that not all competitions are created equal. Some are geared more to a specific experience or skill level. Others tend to focus more on one style of dance rather than another. You shouldn't be surprised or upset if there are dancers at your child's studio attending different events than your child is. If you are wondering why you may or may not be going to a specific event make sure to ask your child's teacher.

It is not uncommon for dancers to spend a lot more time at the studio when they are close to competing. Often the routine will need to be polished. Small gestures or steps will be corrected and this can be a stressful time for your son or daughter. Remember to be as encouraging and supportive as possible. Ask the teacher if there is anything you can do to help such as having your child practice at home.

You may want to find out when your child will be dancing at any given event. Some dancers will be in a bunch of numbers and this may mean you will need to come back on more than one day. If you have to travel a long distance to get there it may be easier to simply book a hotel room and stay near where your son or daughter will compete. Just remember to book a room as early as possible so that you have your choice of where to stay.

Be prepared to bring a lot more gear than you would expect. Getting a large, rolling suitcase can help make this a lot easier to do. Wheels on a suitcase will mean it is easy to transport even if it is full of shoes, costumes and other necessary gear. There are even cases that have racks to hang costumes from. These can be expensive but are often a good investment.

As well as costumes and accessories, there are a few other things that you may want to throw in your dancer's bag. Extra hair elastics, bobby pins and styling products are a must. These break or get lost easily and it can be stressful to find replacements. You should also throw in a sewing kit as straps and other things can break suddenly. Snacks can also be good things to bring. Dancers will get hungry and if their numbers are not spaced out evenly there may not be time for you to go and grab regular meals. Don't be surprised if your dancer shares snacks and drinks with their teammates.

It is normal for competition days to feel very long. Your son or daughter will be expected to arrive several hours early. This is so that they can warm up, run through their numbers and get their costumes and makeup on. Often, there will be hours between when they perform and when awards are given out.

While the numbers change from year to year, the competition experience does not. It is fun, exciting and very memorable for both dancers and their parents. Sitting in the audience and watching your child can be an experience unlike any other and it's no wonder that dancers keep competing year after year.

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