March 1, 2016

I’m super-excited about our special section this month, “Training the Healthy Dancer.” I think you’ll love the straightforward advice of our experts. But as I’m writing this, it occurs to me that the first step in training a healthy dancer is to be a healthy teacher: centered and strong. Teacher self-care is an evergreen topic in Dance Teacher.

Take nutrition, for instance. “I can’t tell you how unhealthily I used to eat,” Kim McSwain told DT in 2011. “Red Bull to start my day, followed by Jack in the Box cheeseburgers. I used to hear people talk about eating healthy and think, ‘That sounds awful; go eat a hamburger and get a life.’” But McSwain, who is now on our Dance Teacher Summit faculty, eventually changed her health outlook and has no regrets. “I would never go back to eating the way I did or not working out. I carry myself differently now, and my energy level has gone up. Taking an hour or two a day to go for that walk or go to the gym, it’s worth it.”

This month in “Lunchtime Lecturer,” you’ll meet another popular teacher—Caroline Lewis-Jones—who brings a message of smart nutrition and positive body image to convention dancers.

And in “Let It Go,” we identify activities that a dance studio owner can easily outsource. Perhaps after you delegate a few tasks, you’ll be able to create a time-out for yourself. May I suggest listening to a brief mini-practice in mountain pose created by Susan Kraft, the author of “Find Your Center With Yoga”? Taking a moment to quiet your busy brain and center yourself before class can help both you and your students. You’ll find the mini practice audio at

Here’s to your health and well-being.

Photo by Matthew Murphy

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