How Dance Can Help You Achieve Personal Goals and Develop Positive Life Skills
By: Angela Tucker, Owner/Artistic Director, York Dance Academy
My parents took me to the Nutcracker, when I was just five years old and my dreams of becoming a ballerina began. I can still recall twirling to the sounds of Tchaikovsky in my parent’s living room and imagining the applause of the audience as I performed for them. I didn’t realize at the time how much was involved in becoming a dancer, I just knew that I wanted to be one.
Fortunately, my mother enrolled me in ballet lessons and my path to my future in the world of dance began. I eagerly looked forward to my weekly lesson and soon convinced my parents that once a week wasn’t enough. I wanted to dance every night of the week and so my career as a competitive dancer began. As I look back, I realize now, that my days on the stage as a young child gave me far more than just an opportunity to share my passion for dance with others.
My teamwork skills were refined as I worked together with my peers executing challenging choreography, in front of an audience, in sync, while smiling and making it look effortless. The bonds that I was lucky enough to create with my fellow dancers lead me through many ups and downs, but I learned how to be a contributing member of a team and how to solve problems with others.
As a child it took me a while to learn that if I wanted something, I would have to work extra hard to achieve it. In dance, each dancer must set goals for themselves to accomplish new skills, whether it be getting their splits or finally being strong enough to perform en pointe. The patience and discipline required to achieve my goals in dance were carried over to my other activities including my education, learning how to budget and mange my money and prioritize my time. These skills have all helped me to build a successful business, a solid relationship and maintain life-long friendships.
Dance allows for freedom of self-expression and freedom of emotion. Our purpose is to express emotions, communicating physically, allowing those feelings to move through the body, out of the body, and in doing so, to move others through dance. Confidence in your movement inspires confidence in speech and overall human behavior.
As an adult, I began to share my passion with many others as a dance educator, teaching a variety of dance styles. My husband and I taught social/ballroom lessons together and we developed many friendships with the couples in our classes. We shared so many wonderful times with our friends both socially and professionally, as we also enjoyed a brief career as back-up dancers for corporate events. We are still in touch with many of the couples we met over the years and continue to enjoy dancing together, socially, whenever we can.
Confidence, teamwork, time management and a strong physical and emotional approach to life are all positive qualities that I learned from my years as a dancer. The fact that, in my senior years, I can still enjoy the benefits of dance is a bonus. Dance is one of the activities that we can continue to enjoy and participate in throughout our lifetime. I have seen many seniors in their later years still enjoying dance in one form or another and still expressing themselves through this wonderful performing art. Why wait? Take the first step and try a dance class today. You won’t regret it.
About the Author:
After a successful professional career as a dancer, Angela Tucker owner and director of the York Dance Academy, decided to share her passion and opened her first dance studio in Newmarket. There are now 3 locations in York Region with spacious studios featuring sprung dance floors, homework rooms, WIFI and areas for families to observe the classes in progress. The teaching staff have a personal and yet professional approach to dance instruction which provides students with a positive learning experience.