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5 Weeks, 5 Recital Tips: Tip #2

We are back this week for our second recital tip! Let us know in the comments below how you are doing with our first tip (check out our last blog post here).

Without further ado, our second tip for a successful recital is:

Be Self-Care Conscious

In the fast-paced world we live in and all the obligations, appointments, assignments, activities, etc., it is far too easy to forget to properly take care of ourselves - both body and mind. Here are some ways you can make sure you are being self-care conscious so you are both physically and mentally prepared for your big day:

1) Get Plenty of Sleep

Yes, I know it's tempting to stay up late to binge watch your favorite show or talk to your friends, but your body needs sleep. When you sleep, your body takes that time to rejuvenate and recover. When you don't get enough sleep, your body gets way out of whack and you:

- are at an increased risk of getting sick

- forget things easily as your mind becomes foggy

- have difficulty thinking and concentrating

- end up dealing with skin problems, like acne and uneven skin tone

- put your heart at risk

- increase your risk of cancer and diabetes

You definitely can't count on being able to dance full out when your body is suffering from a lack of adequate sleep!

2) Eat Well

I'll be the first one to admit that I love sweets. Chocolate and I have been best friends for as long as I can remember. But I still make sure I get healthy food with nutrients in my body every day. Your body needs fuel. It will crash and leave you with no energy if you are only fueling it with mostly processed food or nothing but candy. I find the 80/20 rule helpful: 80% of what you eat should be healthy and 20% of what you eat can be your sweets and treats.

Foods that are good for you and will help keep your body properly fueled are:

- fruits and vegetables

- nuts

- calcium-fortified products

- lean meat, fish, or vegetarian alternatives

- crackers and hummus

- fruit and yogurt

- eggs

- avocado

- whole grain cereals, bread, and pasta

- baby potatoes

- legumes

- water, milk, almond milk

3) Less Screen Time, More You Time

We love our technology, that's for sure. You're reading this on some sort of screen - probably your phone or tablet. We have the world at our fingertips and it's so tempting to let hours pass us by as we scroll through funny memes or post our newest super-filtered selfie. But spending too much time looking down at a screen can really take its toll on you. Check out some of these not-so-awesome facts about too much screen time:

- can interfere with brain development

- higher risk of depression

- reduced sleep quality and quantity

- mood issues

- speech delays

- feelings of isolation

- poorer language skills and cognitive control

- emotional and behavioral problems

I'm not saying get rid of your phone... I'm just saying try to wean yourself off the long hours you may be spending on your screen. Turn off your phone or put it in another room. Take time both to interact with family and friends and also make sure you take time for yourself. Take a hot bath, write in your journal, go for a walk, etc. Don't underestimate what time alone can do. It forces you to use your imagination and focus on what's important to you. Plus... less screen time = more practice time! ;)

4) Stretch & Strengthen

It goes without saying that dancers need to be flexible, but they also need to be strong! Rehearsing every week is exhausting and I totally get and appreciate that. However, when you're not in class or rehearsal, you need to make sure you're keeping your body in peak performance condition. Stretching and exercising/conditioning at home is extremely important.

Just like you have to find a time to practice your routines each day, you should have a schedule for your stretching and conditioning as well. Getting up a half hour earlier and starting your day off with a workout and a stretch will set you up for an energetic, productive day.

That's it for tip #2 this week! Practice self-care every day and feel the amazing effects of how much more prepared you are for the big day.

Comment below and tell us your favorite self-care ritual. See you next week!

#recital #tips

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