Dancers and body image go hand in hand. Let’s face it, as dancers every time we step on stage people look at our bodies, and being human, judgement passes through their minds. But what really matters is what passes through your mind.
Do you look in the mirror and like what you see? I hope so as we have one of the few hobbies/professions in the world where you stare at yourself in a mirror for hours on end.
Body image is how YOU view and experience your body. It is how you picture your body through your mind’s eye. Your own personal body image is formed by your experience of living and moving in your body.
Ask yourself these questions;
- How do you see your body?
- How do you feel about your body?
- What do you think about your body?
- How do you feel your body moves?
- Get a good image?
Now, we all have days when we wake up and don’t like what we see. To have to go into a dance studio and stare at that image whilst we kick, turn and jump our way into a sweaty mess, can be intimidating.
This is normal, but what else is normal is being able to look in that mirror, smile and say “That’s me and I like it”.
We are who we are because of the gene pool we came from. Yes, we can mould our bodies into the shape that we desire, but ultimately you only have what you were given.
We need to embrace what we have and work from that.
Being 5’7 I knew I was never going to be 6 foot. Just like a majority of people will never have abs carved out of stone or legs like a dancer at the Lido. The girl born with the big booty, she will always have a big booty!
All this just makes you unique.
Guess what? Unique works. No two people are the same and definitely in the dance world being unique makes you stand out, just as much as long skinny legs do. Every dancer’s body is different as is every style of dance. So what may be the ideal body for a ballet dancer is completely different to the belly dancers body.
There is no right or wrong shape for dancers. What’s right is knowing what we were given from the beginning was perfect but understanding that even perfection can be tweaked.
Healthy isn’t being Uber thin or being Hercules its having a healthy body image.
Remember: You are who you are, you have what you have. Learn to look at it and love it.