If you’re a dancer, you know how important flexibility and body control is to building your technique. But have you ever considered the creativity that can be gained by having a variety of tumbling skills at your fingertips? Here are four reasons every serious dancer should take tumbling:
1. Tumbling develops whole-body strength.
Not only does tumbling build upon strength you learn in your dance classes, but it can work many of the muscles you may not otherwise be using. Shoulders, for example are one of the top muscle groups worked by tumbling skills. Strong shoulders can benefit dancers in lifts, tricks and stalls. Upper body strength can also protect your head, neck and core when learning new skills.
2. Tumbling improves your flexibility.
Dancers are often known for their hyper-flexibility, but while flexibility can protect your body from various injuries, hyper-flexibility without equal strength, can actually make you more prone to injury. Tumbling can be a valuable tool in a dancers arsenal to ensure he or she is developing strength and flexibility at an equal pace – allowing them to advance more efficiently and prevent injury at the same time.
3. Tumbling is a beautiful visual when added to choreography.
No matter what your preferred style of dance is, tumbling can add depth, dimension, height transitions and demonstrate a dancer’s sense of control in a routine. In many lyrical and contemporary routines, back walkovers, aerial cartwheels and front aerials are often used for creative movement and overall presentation of choreography. In hip hop, back handsprings and roundoff tucks are often used for execution of movement. Additionally, those with excellent headstands and handstands can often complete stalls and partner tricks more effectively and with solid consistency.
4. Tumbling is a ton of fun and can prevent “dancers’ burnout.”
If you’re a company dancer, you probably love dance. But you also know that 10-15 hours per week of working on technique and routines can sometimes make the extraordinary a little mundane. As you build your dance skills, you also might be in a slump. Perhaps the triple pirouette isn’t coming as quickly as you had hoped. For dancers who also take tumbling instruction though, you might be able to progress on your aerials – keeping you excited and engaged in both dance and tumbling. The variety of skills you’re able to work on simultaneously can add some additional excitement to both activities.
When considering a tumbling class or private lessons, it’s important to find a gym that understands dance. There are many non-fundamental tumbling skills that – while they may be important for a gymnast or cheerleader to learn – are not likely to be choreographed into a dance number. A gym that understands what a dancer needs to learn and can tailor the curriculum to “dance” can be incredibly valuable in effective progression.
Coincidentally, Ultimate Canadian Athletics offers a Max 4 class specifically for dancers. Because a company dancer’s schedule can be incredibly demanding, Max 4 offers private lessons at a variety of times to accommodate any schedule. Your child, along with three other dancers will work a specific curriculum to ensure maximum progression. For more information on our class or private lessons, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 905-839-8822.