Your Best Body: Moving Beyond “No Pain, No Gain”

Moving Beyond “No  Pain, No Gain”   When you get injured, not dancing can be the smartest career move.   By Nancy Wozny and Rosie Gaynor   On opening night of Coppélia last June, the light, sprightly Pacific Northwest Ballet powerhouse Kaori Nakamura tore a calf muscle midway through Act I. “I couldn’t point myMore »

Your Best Body: All About Bunions

First, the good news: Ballet does not cause bunions directly. That said, many a dancer is plagued with the pesky bump on their big-toe joint. Fortunately, there’s no need to rush to surgery, since much can be done to treat bunions and make dancing with them more comfortable.    Bunion BasicsA bunion is a bony protuberanceMore »

Your Best Body: Beyond the Barre

Beyond The Barre   Strategic cross-training can transform your performance onstage.   By Kathleen McGuire   Dancers work tirelessly to improve their technique, spending hours at the barre to become better performers onstage. However, the silver bullet to better performances may actually be at the gym. By now, dancers know they should cross-train. But mostMore »

Your Best Body: Fuel For Performance

Lauren Fadeley takes a few bites of a Clif bar before attacking William Forsythe’s fast-paced In the middle, somewhat elevated. On top of Forsythe, she also has Balanchine’s Square Dance and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa’s Requiem for a Rose on her plate. “If I get lax with my nutrition, it’s harder for me to stay onMore »

Your Best Body: Troubleshooting Nerves

Troubleshooting Nerves   Keep competition stage fright in check–and use it to improve your performance.   By Kathleen McGuire   Joffrey dancer Amber Neumann stood backstage at the 2009 New York International Ballet Competition feeling something new: nerves. Her muscles were shaky and she caught herself holding her breath. “My partner, John Mark Giragosian, wasMore »

Your Best Body: Total Body Tune-Up

Total Body Tune-Up   Thera-Band exercises that go beyond your toes   By Jen Peters   When most ballet dancers think of Thera-Bands, they picture toes pointing and flexing. But Thera-Bands aren’t just for your feet. They are an exercise tool that can tone your entire body without adding unwanted bulk.   Try these exercisesMore »

Beat Bruises

Although bruises are a common side effect of intense rehearsals, they aren’t exactly the most fetching onstage accessories. Luckily, most dancers already carry a quick, easy remedy in their dance bags: arnica. The same gel you use to help combat sore muscles also reduces discoloration by stimulating white blood cells, which disperse congested blood. ToMore »

Your Best Body: Try This Fruit

Lychee fruit packs a mighty nutritional punch. Popular for its health-boosting powers, lychee’s taste and texture is similar to that of a grape, but a little sweeter and juicier. Plus, they are only 6 calories apiece. Nutrients: Just three small lychees fulfill 100 percent of your daily vitamin C needs! They are also high inMore »