Health & Body

5 Tips for Healthy Eating During Competition Season

Competitions can be hectic and exhausting–especially for your students. To ensure a strong and healthy season, here's a handful of meal and snack ideas.

Bring Your Own Food for Breakfast

Travel with a box of whole-grain cereal and portion it out into zip-lock bags for those early mornings. For some added protein, add to a container of Greek yogurt.

Make a Snack Tote

Between costumes and makeup, many students will forget to pack food. Pick up a tote at the dollar store and fill it with nonrefrigerated snacks, like whole-grain crackers, 100-calorie packs of nuts or granola bars, for your students to snack from.

Be Mindful of Portion Sizes

When eating out is the only option, have kids split an entrée or take half
of it to go.

Skip the Starchy Sides

Convention centers and theater concessions don't always provide the healthiest options, so, if possible, tell your students to avoid ordering the french fries and opt for a side of vegetables or grilled protein. This will help keep energy high for those long performing days.

Stay Hydrated

Have your students pack a reusable water bottle when traveling. This is the easiest (and cheapest) way to keep the water flowing.

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Securing the correct music licensing for your studio is an important step in creating a financially sound business. "Music licensing is something studio owners seem to either embrace or ignore completely," says Clint Salter, CEO and founder of the Dance Studio Owners Association. While it may seem like it's a situation in which it's easier to ask for forgiveness rather than permission—that is, to wait until you're approached by a music-rights organization before purchasing a license—Salter disagrees, citing Peloton, the exercise company that produces streaming at-home workouts. In February, Peloton settled a music-licensing suit with the National Music Publishers' Association out-of-court for an undisclosed amount. Originally, NMPA had sought $300 million in damages from Peloton. "It can get extremely expensive," says Salter. "It's not worth it for a studio to get caught up in that."

As you continue to explore a hybrid online/in-person version of your class schedule, it's crucial that your music licenses include coverage for livestreamed instruction—which comes with its own particular requirements. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about music licensing—in both normal times and COVID times—as well as some safe music bets that won't pose any issues.

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Teaching Tips
A 2019 Dancewave training. Photo by Effy Grey, courtesy Dancewave

By now, most dance educators hopefully understand that they have a responsibility to address racism in the studio. But knowing that you need to be actively cultivating racial equity isn't the same thing as knowing how to do so.

Of course, there's no easy answer, and no perfect approach. As social justice advocate David King emphasized at a recent interactive webinar, "Cultivating Racial Equity in the Classroom," this work is never-ending. The event, hosted by Dancewave (which just launched a new racial-equity curriculum) was a good starting point, though, and offered some helpful takeaways for dance educators committed to racial justice.

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Higher Ed
The author, Robyn Watson. Photo courtesy Watson

Recently, I posted a thread of tweets elucidating the lack of respect for tap dance in college dance programs, and arguing that it should be a requirement for dance majors.

According to, out of the 30 top-ranked college dance programs in the U.S., tap dance is offered at 19 of them, but only one school requires majors to take more than a beginner course—Oklahoma City University. Many prestigious dance programs, like the ones at NYU Tisch School of the Arts and SUNY Purchase, don't offer a single course in tap dance.

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