5 Exercises to Improve Your Dancing and Get in Shape

#1 Planks

Dance Exercises, Planks
Using your core is key for all types of movement and core strength will help your balance as well.

  1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
  2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms. Your elbows should be directly beneath your shoulders, and your body should form a straight line from your head to your feet.
  3. Hold the position for as long as you can. Your goal should be to hold it for two minutes.

#2 Rowing

Dance Exercises, Rowing

Most arm movement is initiated in the back. Not only does a strong back look good, but it will also make your movement look controlled and intentional.

    (You will need an exercise band if you’re not using a rowing machine. )

  1. Set up your anchor point at belly button height when you are seated with your legs extended and your back straight.
  2. With your arms extended forward, squeeze your shoulder blades together as you pull the band back as far as you can toward your stomach.
  3. Release this position slowly until you are back to your starting position.

#3 Squats

Dance Exercises, Squats

When have you ever seen a dancer that didn’t have a good butt? Not only does a muscular derriere keep you looking lifted and youthful, but your glutes are also your stabilizer muscles for striding, sit positions, rise and fall and more.

  1. Stand tall with your feet hip width apart and your arms down by your side
  2. Start to lower your body back as far as you can by pushing your hips back and bending your knees and pushing your body weight into your heels. As you are lowering into the squat your arms will start to raise out in front of you for balance. Keep a neutral spine at all times and never let your knees go over your toes. The lower body should be parallel with the floor and your chest should be lifted at all times not rounded.
  3. Pause then lift back up in a controlled movement to the starting position

#4 Toe Presses

Dance exercises, toe presses

One of the most important and often overlooked parts of the body is the feet. You need muscle to keep your feet turned out in your cha cha and to stride through your foxtrot.

  1. Start barefoot, with both feet flat on the floor. Use a wall or ballet bar for stability if you need it.
  2. Count to 5 as you pick the heels up and push yourself onto the balls of the feet. You should still be able to wiggle your toes.
  3. Then count to 5 as you lower back onto the flats of your feet. As you get more and more stable try without holding on and then on one foot then the other.

#5 Shoulder Fly

Dance exercises, shoulder fly

Any exercise that makes you aware of the height of your shoulders is a good one in my book. If you get your photos back from comp and your shoulders are up to your ears, try some shoulder flys:

  1. Raise both your arms up and away from the sides of your body with your palms facing down.
  2. Raise the dumbbells to shoulder level being careful not to shrug your shoulders or arch your back.
  3. Hold the top position and then return your arms to the sides of your body.