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The Rock School's 5 Tips for Perfect Pirouettes

Posted on July 24, 2017 by Danielle Hernandez

At The Rock School for Dance Education we are as well-known for producing astounding, technically proficient dancers as we are for being the go-to place for perfecting pirouettes. Perfect pirouettes have always been a staple in our reputation, so much so that our students have nicknamed the studio, “Pirouettes R Us.” With our over 30 years experience in pirouettes, we’ve compiled the five most important essentials that, if followed, will have you turning just like a Rock School prima!

Some people seem to turn more easily, but everyone can turn given time, patience, intelligent hard work, and by implementing these five pirouette essentials:

#1. Calculate beforehand.

Placement is key. Spotting is an essential part of a pirouette and can easily throw off your turn if done incorrectly. Before you begin, decide where you are going to spot. Choose an eye-level point or object in the room to return your eyes to; changing your spot mid-term could be disastrous! Spotting too slowly or with too much force can disrupt the momentum. Pay attention to the musical rhythm of the turn and think of each rotation as a pearl on a necklace, each having a clear identity, defined by the spot.

#2. Listen to your body.

Core strength is critical. Knowing how to kinesthetically put all of the “body pieces” together, having the strength to keep your body in the “right” place, and being able to make minor adjustments during the turn all go in to the mix.

#3. Find your balance.

Analyze your pirouette from a physics perspective and what forces are necessary to maintain your balance. To stay on one leg, think about opposing energies, like a bow and arrow. One needs to feel the energy pushing down into a strong supporting leg while lifting the passé foot. Think of yourself growing taller to avoid sitting in your hip.

#4. Be bold.

Though turns do not require much force, do not approach the turn timidly. Begin in a proper position and get to the full height of your passé immediately while pressing through half pointe up to pointe. The roll through on and off pointe is very important. The direct and immediate action of the toe tip underneath the center of the body to passé must be light and quick. The toe of the passé foot pulling up from the passé with both heels working forward and the passé knee lifted high.

#5. Practice your timing.

Most important, and often forgotten, the “po-po” must lift at the same time as the toe, knee, and relevé. The coordination of the relevé foot and the passé foot must be immediate and together.

Whether on pointe or demi-pointe, we know you will succeed in mastering the perfect pirouette when you practice our five, time-tested, pirouette essentials that have made The Rock School the infamous, “Pirouettes R Us.”

HOW MUCH PROTEIN DO DANCERS NEED?

Posted on July 19, 2016 by Danielle Hernandez

Protein Needs of Dancers: How Much, What Kind, and When?

 By: The Dance World Editor 

DI_protein_MAINFrom Dance Informa

Do dancers need extra protein? Do they need to use powders, drinks, shakes or amino acid supplements or should they just eat more? Sadly, the misguided “low-carb” fad continues to be a contributing factor in 70% of Americans being overweight or obese. In light of current research suggesting a link between meat and dairy and risk for long-term diseases…what should you think?

How Much:

Yes, dancers have slightly higher protein needs than the average non-athletic person, particularly if they are still growing adolescents. However, it is important that we think beyond this incorrect idea that most of our food should be protein and that we should avoid carbohydrates. Adequate protein is important, but too much can be harmful. Everyone is a little different, but guidelines from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) are that 12-15% of all the calories you eat throughout a whole day should be comprised of protein which are strings of amino acids joined together like a train with many cars.

Read the full article Full Protein Article!

BRAND AMBASSADOR GEORGIA BUNNELL

Posted on July 19, 2016 by Danielle Hernandez

So this month we were able to catch Georgia Bunnell between dance classes, competitions, and recitals to answer a few questions about her experience, her dreams, and her secret to performing at a high level.

 

When did you start dancing?

I first started dancing around 10 years ago, at age 4.

 

What motivated you to start dancing/singing/performing?

I started dancing because my mum wanted to put me in a hobby just for fun, but then she realised I was starting to get good. Since then, I had had many opportunities with [dancing] and it has lead on to other performance opportunities, such as singing and acting – which I am also very passionate about.

 

Who is your dance idol/inspiration?

My dance inspiration is the American child dancers, Sophia Lucia, Maddie Ziegler, and Kalani Hilliker.

 

What are your goals for the future?

My goals for the future are to be a world famous dance teacher. I also want to have my own albums, and to dance and choreograph in my music videos.

 

How do shows like ‘So You Think You Can Dance?’ impact you? You can choose a different dance show or film.

Dance shows impact me a lot because they show a lot of moves and styles I would have probably never seen otherwise. They motivate me to try new things, and inspire me to be like or better than the dancers on the shows.

 

What is the most important thing you have learned from choreographers you have worked with?

The most important thing I have learned from choreographers I’ve worked with is to not be afraid to just go for it. Whatever dance or move I haven’t tried before – to just go for it and not be afraid of the result or people’s opinions. Another one is to just perform full out even if I’m not used to the style, and put my heart on the line with every dance I perform.

 

What is your favorite genre of dance?

My favourite dance style is lyrical modern because I love the way you can tell a story and paint a picture to the audience. I love how moving it can be and how much emotion I can put into the dance.

 

What motivated you to become an ambassador?

I was motivated to become an ambassador because I wanted to show my love for dance to the world and be able to give my all to try and represent a company the best I can. Also, it is an amazing opportunity I would never miss out on!

 

What is your favorite dance item? Leotards? Shoes? and Why?

My favourite item of dancewear has to be the leotards! I have tons and tons of different leotards in all different colours because I just love clothing. I love all the pretty, different styles and colours. I love nothing more than receiving a new leotard and getting to show it off online and at places; even my in own dance studio during classes!

 

What technique tools help you the most (examples…, foot stretchers, exercise bands, turning boards)?

The technique tools that help me the most are my turning board because I love to nail my turns properly and see how many I can do! Also, I love to use my foot stretcher to make my arches bigger because it improves my point work and makes my legs and feet look cleaner and nicer.

 

If you could meet any professional dancer who would it be?

If I could meet one professional dancer it would have to be Darcey Bussle. She has been there and seen/ done it all. I would ask her endless questions and use her answers to improve myself and get more motivated. If I could meet her, it would be a dream come true. She is my idol.

 

What would be your dream dance job?

My dream dance job is to be a world-renowned dance teacher just like Abby Lee! I want to have my own dance company in lots of different places in the world. I would also love to be a sought-after, freelance choreographer and choreograph big award-winning numbers.

Excel in Motion-Convention Tour Dates

Posted on January 02, 2016 by Danielle Hernandez

About Excel in Motion Dance Convention

Click HERE for tour dates

Excel in Motion is a dance event that brings you the most talented artists currently working in the industry to encourage and inspire young dancers! You can find Excel's faculty anywhere from dancing on the Oscars, backing up the world's biggest pop stars, choreographing for television and film, and winning the hearts of America on "So You Think You Can Dance".  


Our hope is to give an educational dance experience, where everyone walks away from the weekend feeling energized and inspired by new movement. Each one of our dedicated faculty brings their own teaching philosophy and flare - a combination of talent and energy that has a little something for everyone. With ten classes from all Excel faculty members at 3 different experience levels, we are sure that our events will be memorable for all dancers, teachers and parents. Dance styles include: jazz, tap, contemporary, lyrical, musical theater, tap, animation, and hip hop. Even if dancers have never taken one of these styles of dance, we encourage everyone to try new things!

New York City Dance Alliance

Posted on January 02, 2016 by Danielle Hernandez

Click here for updates on the 2015-2016 Tour

The Pulse on Tour- 2016 Dates

Posted on January 02, 2016 by Danielle Hernandez

Click here for the 2015-2016 Tour Dates

The PULSE on Tour is THE POWERFUL weekend dance workshop, featuring the top choreographers and instructors in the industry today. Our faculty can be seen on reality television shows (such as So You Think You Can Dance, X Factor, America’s Got Talent, American Idol), directing the hottest music videos (Justin Bieber, Janet Jackson, Lady Gaga, Gwen Stefanie, Jennifer Lopez: to name a few) and tours for leading recording artists, as well as producing and choreographing for headlining movies, commercials, Broadway productions, and distinguished dance companies. Our goal is to educate and teach dancers in an inspiring environment.

For the eleventh consecutive year, dance icons join The PULSE to create the ultimate dance experience for thousands. The exclusive 2015-2016 PULSE Faculty includes, Creative Director Brian Friedman, Cris Judd, Dave Scott, Gil Duldulao, Brooke Lipton, Ian Eastwood, Tricia Miranda, Tucker Barkley, Jillian Meyers, Tessandra Chavez, Kyle Hanagami, Kayla Radomski, & Megan Lawson.

Your PULSE weekend includes:

  • Non-stop dance classes all day Saturday and Sunday
  • NEW! Competitive Element - Battle Royale
  • Photo with our Faculty
  • Scholarship ceremony 
  • Private teacher’s only class
  • Business & Bagels for Teachers Only
  • Parent Chat with our PULSE Directors
  • Parent Class
  • Creative Connect luncheon with the Faculty for Teachers and Group Leaders
  • Discounts for those bringing a group of 10 or more

Dancers and teachers walk away from our conventions inspired and motivated to reach their next goals in dance. Our faculty and staff are proud of their dedication to building genuine relationships through personal interaction with dancers, parents and teachers. We realize there are many options out there for a dancer’s education, and we promise to show you a dance experience of a lifetime!

We are proud to see so many of our dancers grow into working professionals right inside our classrooms. Countless PULSE Dancers have been discovered, signed and are now represented by top agencies like Clear Talent Group, MSA, and more. This year alone, our dancers have booked major gigs with Justin Bieber, Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj, Madonna, America's Got Talent, American Idol, The Voice, The 2012 Billboard Awards, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and more!

Individual dancers and groups/studios welcome!

HOW MUCH PROTEIN DO YOU NEED?

Posted on December 31, 2015 by Danielle Hernandez

Protein Needs of Dancers: How Much, What Kind, and When?

 By: The Dance World Editor 

DI_protein_MAIN

Do dancers need extra protein? Do they need to use powders, drinks, shakes or amino acid supplements or should they just eat more? Sadly, the misguided “low-carb” fad continues to be a contributing factor in 70% of Americans being overweight or obese. In light of current research suggesting a link between meat and dairy and risk for long-term diseases…what should you think?

How Much:

Yes, dancers have slightly higher protein needs than the average non-athletic person, particularly if they are still growing adolescents. However, it is important that we think beyond this incorrect idea that most of our food should be protein and that we should avoid carbohydrates. Adequate protein is important, but too much can be harmful. Everyone is a little different, but guidelines from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) are that 12-15% of all the calories you eat throughout a whole day should be comprised of protein which are strings of amino acids joined together like a train with many cars.

Read the full article Full Protein Article!

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