Here are five effective exercises to increase hamstring flexibility for dancers.

1. Forward FoldStand tall with your feet hip-width apart. Hinge at the hips and slowly lower your torso towards the floor, keeping your back straight. Reach towards your toes, allowing your hands to rest on your shins, ankles, or the floor. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds.
2. Seated Forward BendSit on the floor with your legs extended in front of you. Reach forward and gently grasp your shins, ankles, or feet. Slowly lean forward, keeping your back straight, and try to bring your chest towards your thighs. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds.
3. Standing Hamstring StretchStand with your feet hip-width apart. Extend one leg forward and place it on a raised surface, such as a chair or stool. Keep your toes pointed towards the ceiling and slowly lean forward, reaching towards your toes. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds on each leg.
4. Supine Hamstring StretchLie flat on your back with your legs extended. Lift one leg off the ground and use a towel or resistance band to wrap around the ball of your foot. Gently pull the leg towards your chest, keeping your knee straight. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds on each leg.
5. Single-Leg Downward DogStart in a high plank position. Lift one leg off the ground and extend it towards the ceiling, keeping your hips square. Push your hands into the ground and press your heels towards the floor, feeling the stretch in your hamstrings. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds on each leg.

Remember to warm up before performing these exercises and to listen to your body. Gradually increase the intensity and duration of the stretches over time. It’s also advisable to consult with a dance instructor or a healthcare professional for personalized guidance.

7 Steps to better pirouettes

If you’re a dancer, you know that pirouettes can be one of the most challenging moves to master. However, with the right technique and practice, you can improve your pirouettes and make them a standout part of your dance repertoire. Here are some tips on how to get better pirouettes:

  1. Focus on your core: The key to executing a successful pirouette is having a strong core. Practice exercises such as planks, sit-ups, and Pilates to strengthen your abdominal muscles.
  2. Work on your spotting technique: Spotting is a critical component of executing a pirouette. Focus on a fixed point with your eyes as you turn, and quickly snap your head around to find that point again. This helps to prevent dizziness and maintain your balance.
  3. Practice your balance: One of the main reasons why pirouettes can be difficult is due to a lack of balance. To improve your balance, practice standing on one leg and holding it for as long as possible. You can also practice balancing on a Bosu ball or other unstable surface to challenge your stability.
  4. Engage your turnout: Your turnout is crucial for executing a clean pirouette. Make sure you engage your turnout from your hips and keep your knees and feet turned out throughout the turn.
  5. Work on your plié: A proper plié is essential for a successful pirouette. Focus on a deep and controlled plié before your turn to set yourself up for success.
  6. Practice with a partner: Practicing with a partner can help you to focus on your technique and work on any areas that need improvement. You can also use your partner for spotting and to help you maintain your balance.
  7. Visualize your turns: Visualization is a powerful tool for improving your pirouettes. Close your eyes and imagine yourself executing a perfect turn, focusing on your technique and form. This can help to build muscle memory and improve your performance.

Remember, practice makes perfect. With dedication and consistency, you can improve your pirouettes and become a stronger and more confident dancer. Happy turning!

Why dance is great for Boys!

Dancing may not be the first activity that comes to mind for boys, but it can provide numerous benefits for male dancers. Many football clubs, such as Manchester United and Barcelona, have recognized the value of dance class for their players and have incorporated it into their training regimens. Here are a few reasons why boys should consider taking dance class:

  1. Greater athletic skills: Dance class can improve boys’ coordination, balance, and overall physical skills, which can translate to better performance on the football field. Manchester United and Barcelona are just two examples of clubs that have their players take dance class to improve their agility and footwork.
  2. Increased confidence: Dance class can help boys build confidence and self-esteem. It allows them to express themselves creatively through movement and music, and can help them feel more comfortable in their own skin.
  3. Improved mental and emotional well-being: Dance class can be a great way for boys to relieve stress and improve their mental and emotional well-being. It allows them to let go of any negative feelings and focus on the present moment.
  4. An enjoyable and social activity: Dance class can be a fun and social activity for boys to enjoy with their peers. It provides an opportunity to make new friends and bond with others over a shared love of dance.

In conclusion, dance class can provide numerous benefits for boys, including greater athletic skills, increased confidence, improved mental and emotional well-being, and an enjoyable and social activity. Encourage the boys in your life to give dance class a try and see the positive impact it can have on their overall well-being, just like the players at Manchester United and Barcelona have.

Did you know Dance can increase children’s intelligence?

Dance class can provide numerous benefits for children, including making them more intelligent. Here are a few ways dance class can boost a child’s intelligence:

  1. Increases cognitive development: Dance class can help children develop cognitive skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, and spatial awareness. These skills are important for overall intellectual development.
  2. Enhances memory and concentration: Dance class requires children to remember and execute sequences of movements. This helps improve their memory and concentration skills.
  3. Encourages creativity: Dance class allows children to express themselves creatively through movement and music. This can help them develop their imagination and creativity.
  4. Improves coordination and physical skills: Dance class helps children improve their coordination and physical skills, which can translate to better performance in sports and other physical activities.

In summary, dance class can be a fun and beneficial activity for children that can help them become more intelligent. Encourage your child to give dance class a try and see the positive impact it can have on their cognitive and physical development.

Great simple stretches to do in the holidays

Hey dancers!

Just wanted to share some great stretches you can do on the floor to keep your body feeling strong and ready to dance when you return to the studio.

  1. Pigeon pose: Start on all fours and bring one leg forward, placing the shin on the ground and the foot by the opposite hip. Lower down onto your forearms and hold for 30 seconds. Switch sides.
  2. Spinal twist: Lie on your back and bring both knees in towards your chest. Let both knees fall to one side, keeping both shoulders on the ground. Hold for 30 seconds and switch sides.
  3. Hamstring stretch: Lie on your back and bring one leg up, holding onto the back of the thigh with both hands. Straighten the leg and lift it towards the ceiling, keeping your other leg flat on the ground. Hold for 30 seconds and switch sides.

Remember to always warm up before stretching and listen to your body. Happy stretching!

Why Dance class is great when starting Kindergarten.

Starting Kindergarten can be a big transition for kids and parents alike! One activity that can be a great way to unwind after a long day of school is dance class. Not only is dance a fun and creative outlet, it also has numerous benefits for young children.

Dance can help improve coordination, balance, and flexibility, as well as promote physical fitness and overall health. It can also boost self-esteem, confidence, and social skills, as kids learn to interact with others and express themselves through movement.

So if you’re looking for a fun and enriching after school activity for your child starting Kindergarten, consider signing them up for dance class. They’ll get to have a blast while also developing important skills and habits that will serve them well in school and beyond!

Ask us what great classes are available at Steps 2 Stardom your child. We also offer free trials.

About Steps 2 Stardom

Steps 2 Stardom was established in 1994 and has loved teaching dance to the children of the Macarthur Community.

Sisters Cathryn & Annette Hill (Directors of Steps 2 Stardom), started the studio in Ambarvale and has seen it grow into a greatly successful, trusted, friendly and professional studio.

Steps 2 Stardom now offers a huge range of classes from 2.5yrs old, absolute beginner to advanced standard in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Lyrical, Hip Hop, Musical Theatre & Acro Dance. Students are taught by highly experienced and passionate staff who love to teach children. Steps 2 Stardom offers Recreational & Competition classes, concerts, performance opportunities and dance exams.

Steps 2 Stardoms amazing premises at Smeaton Grange include 3 incredible dance studio’s and office which provides uniforms, dance shoes and a canteen for the convenience of all our families.

To find out what great classes we have for your child, head over to our classes page. We welcome new students throughout the year and we would love to hear from you today.