Doctors in the U.K. Will Soon Be Able to Prescribe Dance Classes

 Wingenroth, L. (2018 Nov. 30).  Doctors in the U.K. Will Soon Be Able to Prescribe Dance Classes.  Originally posted in  https://www.dancemagazine.com

It’s become a colloquialism—or, we admit, a cliche—to say that dance can heal.

But with a new initiative launched by British Health Secretary Matt Hancock, doctors in the U.K. will soon be able to prescribe dance classes—along with art, music, sports, gardening and more—for patients suffering from conditions as various as dementia, lung problems and mental health issues.

Termed “social prescribing,” these interventions aim to complement more traditional treatment methods and offer an alternative to over prescribing medications. “We’ve been fostering a culture that’s popping pills and Prozac, when what we should be doing is more prevention and perspiration,” said Hancock in a speech earlier this week, as reported by Smithsonian.

And though they may not be doctor-prescribed, programs in the U.S. show just how significant an impact movement can have as a form of treatment. For instance, when Mark Morris Dance Group’s successful Dance for Parkinson’s Disease program was profiled in the Journal of Neural Transmission in 2016, researchers found that patients who took 16 classes over eight weeks showed a 10.4 percent improvement in overall movement, a 26.7 percent improvement in walking and a 18.5 percent improvement in tremors. In 2010, researchers from the University of Missouri found that The Lebed Method, a low-impact dance class for seniors, improved balance and gait, thereby reducing the risk of injury due to falling. Plus, additional studies have shown that dance can reduce anxiety, improve cognitive functions and more.

In other words, the Brits are probably on to something. Pilot programs across the U.K. are already underway, and the initiative is intended to take full effect by 2023.

 

Social Media in the Dancesport World

What are the advantages of Social Media as a professional dancer?

Social media is kind of like a user-generated newspaper or news channel on television. You create, edit, and publish your own content.

We live in a world flooded by self expression through social media. It’s one of the best times in history to be in a creative industry! We have the power to reach the entire world at your fingertips. To those who didn’t grow up using social media, it can feel invasive and intimidating. However, it you look at it with a different perspective, it’s easy to see how you can use it to your advantage.

At the same time, ANYONE has that publishing power.

It can be increasingly frustrating to feel like you are competing against influencers and celebrities with millions of likes and followers. For example, Supermodel and celebrity Kendall Jenner released a commercial for Vogue dressed vaguely like a ballet dancer (See it here). She moves around but when she tries to pose as a dancer her technique is nonexistent. She received backlash from trained dancers all over the globe for capitalizing on an art form without any formal education. Jenner took away that opportunity from a trained dancer to make money with her skill set, making more money than most dancers will make in their lifetime because she is a celebrity.

Facing this kind of publicity where you’re not even represented correctly can be so discouraging.

So why should you keep up your social media presence? Here’s a few reasons why:

  1. It’s a public resume and portfolio. Social media gives you a blank slate to paint your public image and reputation to the rest of the world. Establish your reputation to the rest of the world while getting to select and edit your own content.
  2. The fastest way to grow an audience is to engage, and social media lets you do that with literally the entire world. You can create a community that admires you online and establish a relationship with them, which is a very fast way to create business.
  3. EVERYONE’S doing it. Usually this phrase is a deterrent. However, nowadays social media accounts are part of your reputation in the industry and typically where other professionals are looking. Make yourself as accessible as possible and keep up with the trends!
  4. By being successful, you pave the way for others. We don’t need more celebrities representing us. We need US representing us. We know our stuff, we’re good at what we do, and we deserve to make money doing what we do. To get us the recognition and work we deserve, we have to put ourselves out there, and social media is by far the easiest way to do it!

Use social media to your advantage! Be smart about branding yourself, make a reputation for yourself before others can, and pave your way to success.

 

 

 

Emerald Ball’s 30th Anniversary!

Wayne and Donna Eng are pleased to announce the 30th Anniversary of the Emerald Ball!

 

This year is bound to be bigger than ever before, and you won’t want to miss it! The Emerald Ball is one of the longest-running Dancesport competitions in the United States. It started 56 years ago under dance legends Ken & Sheila Sloan and now 30 years under Wayne & Donna’s supervision. The Emerald Ball attracts every status of dancer from beginners to professionals from Dancing With the Stars. It’s always the beginning and finale of the Dance Vision Circuit and a great place to see where your rank is in the national spotlight. Original organizer Ken Sloan will also be attending the big celebration!

Wayne and Donna Eng competing in the 1980’s

The Emerald Ball has an unmistakable and excitable charisma that has attracted dancers from all around the world! As Wayne says, it’s all about energy. He even uses an energy healer to help him incorporate his energy as effectively as possible while at the Emerald Ball.

A happy, excited energy always draws crowds of people, and we believe that’s part of the charm of the competition.

Rather than using status to intimidate newcomers, the Emerald Ball encourages new dancers to set new goals and see where they rank. It also gives them a chance to participate in a dancesport competition and get a feel for it. For the pros, it’s the beginning of the circuit, the starting point for the rest of the year, and a chance to compete against friends and colleagues that come every single year.  It’s even great for visitors and family members, particularly during the Pro and Show Dance portions. There’s something for everyone at the Emerald Ball!

Don’t miss the 30th Anniversary Celebration!

Mayo Alanen – How To Create Your Own Art On The Dance Floor!

 

Mayo Alanen is ranked second in the world and was a featured professional on Dancing With the Stars.

He is incredibly dedicated to the success of his students and well respected in the dance community. A talent scout spotted him at the Emerald Ball and he was on the show a year later. Alanen now lives in New York and has students from all over the continent who enjoy learning from him as he teaches professional ballroom dance, specializing in American Smooth.  He donates to charity by competing often and is passionate about bettering the community around him.

Make the world a better place – through dancing!

We agree when he says you should take your art and truly make it your own. Of course there is a time to ask for help, or to strictly follow an expert’s advice. However, we adore the emphasis he places on really taking your art and making it mean something to you. Each participant has a unique view that makes them special and memorable. He sees his students and other dancers as equals, and believes in all of them.

Alanen mentions a charity he created with one of his students. He and Aiyesha Dey donate their winnings to a different charity, giving them a bigger purpose and motivating them to work harder.

Join them as they help the world around us with programs like Meals On Wheels, supporting seniors that are living in solitude and hunger. They also worked with Dancing Dreams to raise funds that provided disabled children weekly dance therapy classes. Donations are also given to the Child Welfare project that supports underprivileged children in Bengal, India. The charity purchases school uniforms, meals, extracurricular activities, and study materials.

Dance for a bigger purpose! Donate and learn more here: https://competingforacause.org/

Blackpool 2018 Winners – Congratulations Arunas Bizokas and Katusha Demidova!

Katusha Demidova and Arunas Bizokas are an aspiring Standard Ballroom professional dancer’s dream come true. The couple took the title at Blackpool Dance Festival for the 8th year in a row!

Katusha and Arunas are the current World Professional Ballroom Champions, British Open Champions, United Kingdom Champions, International Champions, and 3 times United States Champions. From the beginning of their dance partnership, Katusha and Arunas took the Dancesport community by storm. One month into their dance partnership they won the Ohio Star Ball. Two months in, they were competing in the United Kingdom Open Championships. There they placed second among the top dancers of the world. By September of 2009, after dancing together for only two years, they won their first World Championship title.

The couple draws your eyes with their irresistible charm and a chemistry that can’t be faked. Katusha and Arunas now run Rogers Dance Center in Hackensack, New Jersey. The gorgeous dance studio where they teach everything from social dancing to dancesport competition training. Katusha and Arunas continue to improve and learn their dancing and pass on their wisdom and knowledge to students of all age.

Congratulations on winning first place in Blackpool for 8 years in a row, to one of the most loved and well respected dance couples around!

Argentine Tango – Improvisation

Ginger Rogers once said, “When two people love each other, they don’t look at each other, they look in the same direction.” While you may not always be in love with your Argentine Tango partner (or you might!), the intimate nature of the dance resonates with this saying. To dance the Argentine Tango is not to mirror each other; instead, it is about acting and reacting. The dancers have two very different objectives, working in tandem to create the beautiful tango. Let us further explain the objectives of each dancer.

Argentine Tango is a series of improvised movements that are executed by two independent individuals. There are no basic tango steps, no checklist of steps to complete before the end of a song. A good leader must have the sense about him not only to choose the next move, but to invite his partner to make that step in a way that is clear to her. She must accept the invitation, complete the movement, then regain her balance. Once she is ready again to follow, he invites her again.

The follower may indicate that she would like to stop for a moment and add an adornment, which the leader can accept and allow her to add to the dance, or he can choose to continue in the steps that he planned next. This allows the follower to add her own flair to the dance, and perhaps give the leader a moment of stillness to design their next move. The leader must be dependable, but flexible, and wait for his follower to be ready to follow him again. The follower must be agile, adaptable, and trust the leader.

If you are new to the Argentine Tango, try listening to your partner in this way. Leaders, wait for your follower to regain her balance before you invite her to follow you again. Followers, don’t be afraid to communicate that you want to slow down and add to the dance. Your personality and how you improvise together is what makes the tango so extraordinary!