Dance To EvOLvE Blog

Finding The Best Children's Ballet Classes In Chicago

Posted by Laura Spicuzza on Apr 18, 2013 10:54:00 AM

MTM2NjQ0ODQyMjA0NzAyMzA1.pngI've never been to a studio that told me ballet wasn't important.  Quite the opposite,


 actually.  When I was a young girl growing up, I wanted to be a "jazz" dancer - with the sparkly costume and fingers spread out wide.  What I learned was, to be a great jazz dancer (and any other type of dancer for that matter), you have to have ballet.  It is true in every aspect of dance.  If you carry the understanding, form, and vocabulary of ballet all of dance becomes easier.  There's no better time to start ballet than when you're a young child.  That is why I'm going to help you understand how to find the best children's ballet classes in Chicago.

If your dancer is under 6 years of age, it's structurally impossible for their bodies to fully handle some of the techniques of classical ballet.  That is why most studios offer  pre-ballet or tiny tots classes for children.  Many studios are different, but now-a-days, you can get your dancer in a pre-ballet class as early as 2 years old.  When you're looking for children's ballet classes in Chicago, it's important to look for certain qualities within the program.  Between teaching your child the vocabulary of ballet, learning dance class etiquette, and introducing ballet to a young dancer in a way that makes them love the practice for life...finding these key elements will make your dancer into a beautiful/ handsome ballerina.

describe the imageThe Vocabulary of Ballet:  I often have dancers join me in class after their parents have told me that the dancer has taken ballet for the last year, only to find out that they know none of the vocabulary that corrolates with ballet.  While a tiny tots ballet class should be fun, it should also be instilling the practice of ballet into the young dancer.  Make sure when you're looking for children's ballet classes in Chicago, to ask the studio if you can observe a class prior to signing your dancer up.  If they are having a good time but still learning, that's a great start.

Dance Class Etiquette:  The next thing I look for is how a class is conducted in terms of dance class etiquette.  Are they listening to directions?  Are they being cautious of one another and not constantly bumping in to each other?  Are they kind to their peers and respectful to their teachers?  When you're observing the class, make sure to look for these things in the classroom.  While some chaos can be fun (who doesn't enjoy a round or two of Freeze Dance), the overall class needs to feel structured and be a safe environment for all those in it.

Tkids activitieshe last thing to look for is tiny dancers leaving the room with a smile on their face.  There is plenty of time in life to take things seriously, but sometimes it's just nice to be happy and have a smile on your face.  In children's ballet classes in Chicago, ballerinas should be learning but they shouldn't feel drained or stressed.  Ballet is supposed to be fun and enjoyable!

So there you have it.  The key components to finding the perfect children's ballet classes in Chicago.  In every aspect of dance, ballet plays a part.  Whether it's learning to have grace in tap dancing, perfect technique in jazz, or simply finding the strength that it takes to be a prima ballerina...ballet is essential.  For young kids, the practice of ballet can be used in their every day life so make sure you find the best class for your kiddo. 

The truth is, "dance is the song of the body"...so start making the music.

Tags: Children Ballet, children activities, ballet class, Chicago dance class, dance classes for kids in chicago, chicago dance, dance classes in chicago, ballet classes in chicago

Boys' Dance Classes: Dance Is A Sport!

Posted by Brittany White on Apr 11, 2013 9:29:00 AM

 

fred_astaire_male_dancer.jpgSome of the most influential and well-known dancers were men: Bob Fosse, Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly…the list goes on and on. Despite the common stereotype, dance class is not just for girls! Dance is a physical and athletic activity requiring great skill, strength, and agility. Sounds like an ideal
fit for energetic boys! To be a dancer is to be an athlete.

With the popularity of shows such as So You Think You Can Dance and Dancing With The Stars, more boys are taking dance classes than ever before, however the majority of classes still tend to be comprised of primarily females. Boys are instead encouraged to participate in more “masculine” sports as an outlet for their energies. The irony is that dancing is just as physically and mentally demanding as football or soccer…perhaps even more of a challenge!

It is incredibly important that we begin to eliminate the perception that dancing is a “girls only” activity.  Boys who are kept out of dance class are actually missing out on valuable life skills!

Benefits of Dancing for Boys:

Dance Training Improves Discipline and Study Habits!

Dance class requires students to follow an instructor’s directions and focus on new skills. Boys learn the importance of repetition and practice as they work hard towards meeting goals and successfully completing new steps. The discipline learned in dance classes can also help boys to focus on their academics and build study habits for school. Dancing teaches boys not only how to use their feet, but how to use their brains as well!

Dance Training Teaches Respect and Grace!boys dance class

We’ve all heard the saying “boys will be boys,” however dancing is a great way to begin shaping boys into young men. Physically, dance improves posture, teaching boys how to stand up straight and move with masculine grace and sophistication. Socially, dance class shows boys how to respect other people. Following a teacher’s instructions teaches students how to respect authority. Participating in performances and even in class shows boys how to cooperate with others and work as a team!

Dance Training Boosts Self Confidence!

Dancing is not only fun, but can also cater to the competitive nature that many boys are born with. Boys feel a sense of accomplishment and pride when they master a new routine or skill, and this is a great way to boost self-esteem! Learning how to move to music is very satisfying to a young boy, and provides an outlet for self-expression, leading to an improved sense of self and confidence.

boys dance classDance Training Improves Athletic Performance!

A little known fact is that many NFL players have cross-trained in ballet in order to improve their performance on the football field. Well-known players such as Vance Johnson and Hall-of-Famer Lynn Swann have even credited some of their success to their ballet classes, demonstrating that dance is not for "feminine" boys...it is fit for manly men! Dance improves overall body fitness, including flexibility, agility, muscle tone, balance, and endurance.  As an aerobic exercise, dance improves heart health, allowing boys to run, jump and play for extended periods of time without tiring, whether on the dance floor or on a field.

As you can see, the benefits of dance for boys extend far beyond the ability to leap or turn. If the young man in your life expresses an interest in dance classes…try it out! Whether your little boy tries out tap, ballet, or hip-hop…he’ll have a blast while picking up a variety of life skills along the way!

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Tags: hip-hop, Boys Dance, boys dance classes