The other day on Facebook, JRock posted something very important to any dancer looking for advice. Here is what JRock posted:
“A young kid asked me recently “how much do you practice to be so good?”…seems to be a reoccurring question. My answer is simple! You can practice 8 hours a day everyday for years and none of it will matter if you don’t SHINE when the SPOTLIGHT hits you! Practice SMART not hard! When GAME DAY comes…eat your Wheaties and be sure to SHINE!
My practice comes in the form of constantly getting my hands on new music, all types, constantly updating my ipod with fresh playlists! As REAL dancers, it’s not about MEMORIZING the latest batch of Popping EDITS/BEATS you think will be played in the next contest! It’s about studying rhythms, constantly stimulating your brain with new patterns to catch, increasing your ability to break down a song upon the FIRST TIME HEARING IT! If you have this skill…YOU DON’T NEED TO MEMORIZE SONGS!
When it comes to technique, TRAIN! Learn the correct vocabulary of styles, how to do the ORIGINAL moves correctly…STEER CLEAR from learning VARIATIONS at first. Lock down a solid foundation first, then create YOUR OWN variations! Don’t rush this process I’m still learning to this day…and correcting techniques all the time! There are too many to know all of them in only a year or two! Stay at it! An hour or two dedicated to drilling techniques daily a few times week is MORE THAN ENOUGH! Save your energy for HAVING FUN by actually DANCING FULL OUT without thinking!
DANCE…just go dance! Sessions, Circles, Cyphers, Clubs! Get out there and let go, and GO HARD! Too many people DANCE like they are practicing (small indecisive movements, slow motion, no effort, no hit, no dynamic movement). Show effort, make people remember you…dance with so much energy that you have NOTHING LEFT IN THE TANK! If you’re dancing 8 hours a day..odds are you are dancing weak for 8 hours! If you’re dancing with all of your soul, passion, strength and energy you’ll be gassed out in 2 hours no matter what your age is or how good of shape you are in. Even Basketball players, Boxers, etc…gas out in 2 hours or less! So STOP FRONTIN! 🙂
Lastly, take care of your body! Stretch! YOGA! Warm-up before going full out! Drink lots of water, EAT HEALTHY FOOD! Treat your body like a temple, listen to it when it is tired…give it rest when it’s sore..stretch on your days off! I cannot stress this enough! You young dancers will feel the effects as your body matures and hits its late 20’s and 30’s and if you’ve already worn your body to shreds inside and out, it might be too late to fix! So fix it BEFORE you feel it!
Hope this insight helps someone…Peace, stay positive, and keep good energy around you. This also effects your skills!