1. Who Do They Think They Are?
First and foremost, choose your dance teacher wisely. There are thousands of dance studios around the world, even more dance teachers. How do you know where to go? Doing your research and finding out more about your instructor before you put your "dance career" in their hands can save you a lot of time and money.
Depending where you want to take your dancing - competitions, exams, show performance, etc. your teacher should be qualified to support you on your journey. Unfortunately, someone's passion for dance doesn't count as a qualification or relevant experience.
2. Why Are You Dancing?
You are dancing for your own reasons, there is something that you are trying to achieve.
-Improve your health -Become more social -Wear fabulous dresses -Live in that fairy tale for just a minute
If you don't know what you are working towards, how will you know that you have reached your goal? Objectives and milestones keep us motivated and help to track progress. Talk to your teacher about your goals, they are there for you. Be S.M.A.R.T. about your goals.
Follow these steps for goal setting: Specific Measurable Attainable Relevant Timely
3. Don't Be Afraid Of Homework.
At the end of your lesson it's great to a have clear idea of what you need to focus on before the next lesson. Ask your teacher if you are not sure. However, try to get a little bit more than "just practice", as its too vague. Perhaps, "memorize your choreography or your job is to know your timing inside out" - quite simple tasks and very clear, but they still prove challenging to some.
It's easy to get distracted so make sure that once you know your homework, you complete the job. When you know you have done your homework, doesn't it feel great to come to see your teacher and show them you have completed the task? The magic words that every dancer loves to hear from their coach "I can see you have been working hard. Much better"!
4. From Practice To Performance.
You are a dancer and you use your body to produce something meaningful and artistic. Certainly, you wouldn't accept a special award in your pajamas.
You would need to prepare yourself. The same applies when it comes to your dance lessons. To start off, look the part because this will make you feel better and more confident. Wear your practice clothes that make you feel good for all lessons! If you don't have practice wear, then you have an excuse to go shopping.
Secondly, warm up! Go through your choreography, even in your head, and stop wasting valuable lesson time.10-15 minutes is all you need to be ready. And remember you need to wake up both your body and mind.
5. Always Ask Questions
There are "thinkers" and "doers". Which one are you? If you are a thinker, you need to know the details and reasons behind the things your teacher says. When you are a doer, you just "do" without asking many questions.
During the process of learning, you are at the stage where you don't feel the movement or understand what your teacher wants because it's so fresh and new. Ask your teacher to explain principles and then work on them at your own pace. The better the teacher, the more ways they will have to explain the same subject.