Wednesday, 18 March 2015 10:42

Dancer Wellness: Stay in Love with Dance

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I am writing this article for several different audiences out there: for those dancers who are burned out, lack luster, and “over it;” for people who danced “before” and haven’t put those shoes on for “a long time;” for those dance dreamers who wished they “could’ve” but “couldn’t.” Maybe you’re injured and can’t get out on the dance floor? Here’s the jist - you need inspiration. And just in case you’re reading this and you’ve got your inspiration meter turned way up, keep the following tips in your back pocket in case there’s a need for you or a person you know to reconnect in.

You’re a mover, so move!!!

Yes all of you! Movement is your key expression outlet. It’s how you know yourself in the world, so it’s also your inlet. You can’t put this aside forever. Face up to it and own it! Here’s some ideas on how:
Obviously there are classes – in a studio or even your gym may have a movement based group thing going on. You can clear out an open space in your house, or even rent a small stage, studio, friend’s loft, and go for it on your own. Get that playlist together and work it! If you have no idea what to do, bring your laptop and use YouTube as your inspiration. Learn the solo that won last season’s So You Think You Can Dance finale, or dance along with your favorite scene from Mamma Mia. For the burned out gang - dance for yourself by doing/discovering your own movement. Or make a change like moving in a different style, or setting.
At the very least, get on an elliptical machine, jog, swim, bike, play - anything with physical demand. Your body needs you, and you need your body!

Wear a different dance hat

There are many, many different ways to stay involved with the dance world. Take a few minutes to assess your skill set, your interests and your dislikes, and expand the way you can engage yourself. Here are some ideas:
- Design: props, costumes, lighting, sound, musical scores
- Support: volunteer, donate, marketing and public relations, fundraising, bookkeeping, administrative tasks, management
- Creative Reroute: direct, choreograph, design, write, photograph, video, teach

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Get some perspective

Reading biographies is an amazing way to gain perspective and relativity. The story of someone else’s journey can speak volumes to our own experiences and shed light on our personal truths. There are so many out there too! From Martha Graham and Shirley MacLaine, to Frida Kahlo, Nelson Mandela, James Brown, Tina Fey, Gordon Ramsey, and beyond.

Another way to get some perspective and support is through your community. Maybe a former mentor or teacher, a colleague or sibling, can join you in your inspiration finding. What’s kept them moving or helped them regain their motivation? Ask and find out!

Tune in and turn it up

Take the time to set up your jams. You know what I’m talking about. The tunes that take you over, that turn your mind off, and transport you into pure movement expression. We all have them. Set aside those CD’s or pull together a playlist. Whether you are cleaning your house, cooking dinner, sitting in traffic, just got done with a 4 hour rehearsal, or have pushed your couch out of the way to make a dance floor – find yourself as often as possible by pushing PLAY on your inspiration soundtrack. (The same applies to video clips, websites, movies, etc.)
Take the “why” out of it and turn it up!

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Movement has moved you. Own it, and treat it as the sacred, sweet, precious gift that it is.

Happy dancing!

 

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Kate Fox Colie

Kate Fox Colie, CMT, CLMA is endlessly passionate about movement and the body. Kate has been a licensed and certified massage therapist (CMT) since 2001, training extensively in therapeutic and rehabilitative bodywork modalities throughout her career. Her intrigue for musculoskeletal anatomy and kinesiology provides valuable information to not only her private clientele, but to the many performing and visual artist students she has taught in her anatomy courses as faculty at California Institute of the Arts (2005-2009) and California State Summer School for the Arts (2006-2008). Kate earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance performance, production, and choreography from CalArts in 2005 and went on to receive her graduate level credential in somatic movement therapy in 2008 as a Certified Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analyst (CLMA). In early 2015, Kate completed an extensive certification in the Symmetry for Health system, which utilizes objective body measurements and corrective exercises to realign posture and remedy chronic patterns and pain.

Kate specializes in the treatment of performing artists, which dominates much of her time in both her private practice, NewPath Wellness in Glendale, and on-site therapy work with the elite student musicians and dancers at The Colburn School in downtown Los Angeles. This field work deeply informs the content of her guest teaching workshops with presentations most recently at The Colburn Conservatory of Music, Music Academy of the West, OriginPop, Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance at CalArts, Primrose International Viola Competition and Festival, and Pasadena Dance Theatre.

Kate’s dynamic 20 year dance career as a performer, producer, and manager continue with her roles as board member of Vox Dance Theatre, advisory panelist for Youth Protection Advocates in Dance (YPAD), and as dance editor for NoHoArtsDistrict.com, where she writes regular features on community events and dancer health and wellness. She is a proud member of the Performing Arts Medicine Association (PAMA), Association of Bodywork and Massage Professionals (ABMP), Dance Resource Center (DRC), California Massage Therapy Council (CMTC), and Glendale Chamber of Commerce, and attends their conferences and professional gatherings annually.

For more information and to contact Kate directly, visit www.NewPathWellness.com

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