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dancers

Dance Health Interviews

The Movers & The Makers – A Podcast for the Creators

February 12, 2018
the movers and the makers the movement blog podcast kindall payne

The Movement Blog’s excited to introduce its own Podcast: The Movers & the Makers, coming March 2018 with Kindall Payne


the movers and the makers podcast the movement blog kindall payne

Aim of the Podcast

To have real conversations with artists, trainers, fitness and dance enthusiasts about situations dealing with health, fitness, wellbeing, travel, working, etc. The ultimate aim is to therefore give The Movement Blog an audible platform, a voice, for its readers and collaborators. By bringing contemporary dance cultures and conversations towards the limelight, this podcast will be able to be a part of making dance less ‘niche’ and more ‘necessary’.

Reason for Introducing The Movers & the Makers

Podcasts have been a big hit since the early 2000’s, however Dance Podcasts are slowly on the rise. While there are quite a few that focus on the ballet and/or the North American dance scene, there’s just a handful that focus on contemporary dance in an international sense. This upcoming podcast was made to shine a light on people’s unique approach to living and surviving as a freelance dancer, trainer, mover, artist, you name it.

Release of the Podcast

Starting with 5 episodes right off the bat, The Movers & The Makers will be available across most podcast platforms including on this blog. Thereafter, be sure to tune in every 2 weeks. With your engagement, we could get this dance podcast to become a part of iTunes New & Noteworthy and further spread this release to a wider range of audiences. Now is the time to open up conversations about topics we’re all thinking but haven’t spoken about yet.

Get Involved!

Have something you’d like to share? I’d be happy to hear it! I’ll be on the constant lookout for upcoming and established dancers, choreographers, fitness trainers, and any other artists, performers, etc. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch: kindall@themovementblog.co.uk

the movers and the makers podcast the movement blog kindall payne

Your input and feedback will help make this podcast grow and be heard internationally. Thank you all for your support!

Stay tuned!

Dance General Fitness and Well–Being the Gyrokinesis Method

5 Reasons Dancers Should Take the GYROKINESIS® Method

March 26, 2017

I’ve only been teaching the GYROKINESIS® Method for the past year, however I’ve been using this method in conjunction with my dance training for nearly 10 years now. Here are my top 5 reasons why you should take the Gyrokinesis Method too.

The Gyrokinesis Method has been one of the only methods (along with the Gyrotonic Method) to truly address my tightness and weaknesses, which has helped me to move efficiently over the years.

5 reasons why dancers should take the <span class=

  1. No equipment needed!

    Dancers can use this method as a vital part of their warmup and preparation before class and/or performance. All you’ll need is floor space and a place to sit comfortably with the feet on the ground. Movements in this method range from spinal motions to a killer abdominal series. There’s also a self-massage protocol called Awakening of the Senses, which revitalizes the body from the head to the toes.
    Its specific breathing patterns, can help calm not only the mind but release tense, stubborn muscles and, of course, can be practiced anywhere in combination with the exercises. These breathing patterns allow the body to engage properly in movement without overworking and create more energy with strength and release simultaneously.
  2. Not your typical group class.

    Gyrokinesis sessions are often taught in group classes, and you won’t have to break the bank. Usually classes aren’t too big (up to 6-10 people) but it can depend on the studio. These classes are often taught in a circle or semi-circle so there’s more space to move and have the opportunity to see the movements and instructions from the trainer.
    This is unique and beneficial because the class can actually move as a group, an entity, without that completive feeling. In addition, you’re getting all the principles you would get in a private Gyrotonic equipment class – win/win.
  3. Get to the root of the problem.

    Imagine a place where you’re able to achieve those things that allow you to lengthen tense muscles and strengthen weak areas simultaneously with more ease and awareness while being able to see and feel improvements within minutes.
    How? Well, methods like Gyrokinesis use the body’s anatomy in the most natural and organic way for it to be moved (i.e. the spiralling concept). We want to create space in the joints as much as possible before we move, continuously. With that comes muscular length, strength, alignment, and suppleness – some of the methods’ main principles.
  4. Increases pelvic mobility.

    Pelvic mobility and range is highly significant for movement (along with core stability). In dance, the pelvis is constantly being challenged and fully utlized, which could develop into fatigue and ‘overworking’. Maintaining this kind of strength is difficult and so the hips will need some sort of recharge.
    Furthermore, the Gyrokinesis Method focuses heavily on range of the pelvis (like in the Arch and Curl) and how to release its attachments to improve posture, alignment, and reduce back pain. Exercises are based sitting on a chair so you can safely mobilize the pelvis and spine. Great for those who spend a lot of time building websites and networking online.
  5. Move without pain.

    Dancers must learn how to maximize their movement potential without compromising the body or creating unnecessary pain.  Pain often comes from poor alignment, overuse, fatigue, or worst, ignoring the root of the problem. Fortunately, there are ways around working without too much pain.
    The Gyrokinesis method was originally designed for dancers who needed to be educated about ‘how to move without pain’ and to create awareness of self. Once we become more aware of our body in movement, we can adhere to this principle. This method also helps dancers to find true rotation and balance without impact.

Like the Gyrokinesis Method but want to know more about the Gyrotonic Method?

Check out my 5 Reasons Why Dancers Should Take the Gyrotonic Method


Dance General Fitness and Well–Being Interview

WISE WORDS by Norbert De La Cruz III: New York/L.A. Based Dancer, Choreographer & All Around Artist

October 27, 2016
WISE WORDS by dance and choreographer norbert de la cruz III

I present to you a series called WISE WORDS, which will feature short interviews from influential, up and coming and young artists, dancers, and teachers alike.

Let’s all step into the minds of these professionals to not only find inspiration but to get to know them and relate. First up, New York/L.A. based dancer and choreographer, Norbert De la Cruz III on dealing with harsh dance critics, staying fit and happy, and the importance of finding our own true calling.

Enjoy!

wise words: norbert de la cruz III

What is your dance training/education background?

Predominantly Ballet and Contemporary Dance. I trained privately in ballet with two coaches from the age 12-17. [I also] attended the L.A. County High School for the Arts and completed my training at The Juilliard School in NYC.

What are you up to now?

I am now a freelance choreographer and teacher based in NYC and L.A. I’m currently working adjunct as a guest choreographer with SUNY Purchase College Conservatory of Dance and the University of Richmond.

Describe the reality of your daily schedule.

The freelance schedule varies. There are times when you are in 3 different cities within a month, or stationed in a place for 2 months as a choreographic teaching guest or working adjunct at a university or college conservatory on top of teaching workshops on the off days. There’s a lot of time off needed as well. I use that time away to develop my material and practice my lesson plans.

I rent out studio space in [New York] to privately develop phrase material that I cannot do in my smaller apartment living space. I spend a few hours sitting and responding to emails and also planning out what the following year could potentially look like.

What have you learned from experience in the ‘real world’ that has helped you grow and find positive change?

I’ve learned that not every audience member is going to like my work. Also, every one is a critic and you never know what mood people enter the theatre in. As a choreographer, I can’t be jaded or affected by the harsh criticism otherwise it drains the life out of me.

My self esteem was at a low when I had gotten a bad review or when I would overhear audience members criticize my work right in front of my face. In a result-driven industry, there’s an intimate process and value of creativity that viewers do not quite see.

They don’t know the labor and service required in the rehearsal space to keep the art alive. I’ve learned to take criticism lightly and to value the feedbacks that help improve the following work.

What really keeps you going?

Food. Good food. As well as my partner who keeps me grounded and sane; my family who cares and loves me unconditionally; and a feel good music playlist.

How important is risk-taking?

Very important. You are only able to experience a great change in your work and self if you take these risks. Whether you risk looking like a fool or take a chance on a particular opportunity, you need to be able to fight and wrestle your internal monsters and go for it.

Otherwise, it’s a wasted time that leads to regrets. There’s enough people and voices in your head that tell you that you aren’t good enough, therefore in order to take risks, we need to drop the ego and recollect what is truly and actually important to our work and well-being.

Who are a few influential people that you’ve worked with and/or met?

As a dancer, I’ve had the privilege of working with choreographers such as Ohad Naharin, Aszure Barton, Dwight Rhoden, and Desmond Richardson. I’ve met and have been mentored by internationally renowned choreographers such as Jorma Elo, and Nicolo Fonte.

WISE WORDS: norbert de la cruz III

What are your ‘go-to’ strategies to keep your mind and body healthy in shape as much as possible?

Along with lunch and dinner, I eat a decently portioned breakfast every morning. Green tea to drink or honey ginger in the morning. Have snacks throughout the day. Food=energy.

As I don’t dance professionally full time anymore, I have to keep up with body conditioning and properly warming up hours before my rehearsals and even before I leave the house.

I would do about an hour to 1.5 hours of yoga, Pilates, trunk stabilization, into a light ballet barre. That’s helped me cope with my arthritic hip pain as well as being able to walk evenly and properly in the street.

Any advice for budding dancers and performing artists alike?

Don’t take anything personally. Drop your ego. Know what healthy competition is. Acknowledge that every one is bred and born into this world very differently. After training as a dancer, it is likely that many of us will have different trajectory paths and callings towards our true profession and purpose.

Be a genuine person first before transforming into “the artist.” Acknowledge that you are still a human being and understand all the consequences, the success, and failures that follow with just being human. Pick yourself up over and over again.


Follow Norbert De La Cruz III and his works:

 NorbertDeLaCruzIII.com

Instagram

Facebook

 

Dance the Gyrokinesis Method the Gyrotonic Method

How the Gyrotonic Method Enhances Dance Performance

January 13, 2016
how the gyrotonic method enhances dance performance

Gyrotonic [Exercise] has been the perfect addition in my training and performance as a dancer after battling with injuries for years and trying different kinds of crosstraining. Gyrotonic[Exercise] helped me understand where my movement starts and what parts of my body should be working less (with less tension) and which ones I was ignoring. Every Gyrotonic session gives me valuable information about my body, but also makes me trust it more. The body knows how to work efficiently if we listen to it and follow the nature of the movement, Gyrotonic[Exercise] is the perfect way to reconnect and strengthen your body.

– Maria, Ballet/ Contemporary Dancer, Pilates Instructor

how the gyrotonic method enhanced my performance skills

What’s generally needed to enhance dance performance?

Technical ability/understanding

Healthy psychological levels

Neuromuscular coordination

Imagery skills

Musicality/Rhythm

Artistry/Expression

Athleticism

A sense of playfulness

how the gyrotonic method enhances dance performance

What does the GYROTONIC® Method focus on?

  • Neuromuscular coordination
  • Breathing patterns for optimal expansion and contraction
  • Maintaining less effort for more power and increased flexibility
  • Postural and movement alignment
  • Movement intention
  • Relating movement to everyday things, places, and objects
  • Whole body awareness
  • Mind-body connection
  • Rhythm and playfulness

how the gyrotonic method enhances dance performance

How does the GYROTONIC® Method enhance dance performance?

  • Firstly, the method’s movement intention and philosophy is parallel, if not the same, to dance training and most movement.
  • The body is viewed as a functional instrument that is beyond aesthetics.
  • You have to accept and be honest with your own anatomical make up and eliminate the need to imitate someone else’s (e.g. flexibility, turnout).
  • It improves both postural alignment and alignment during movement by increasing awareness.
  • It emphasizes using necessary effort to avoid working ‘too hard’, mentally and physically.
  • Thus, it helps the body to exert an effective amount of energy for longer lasting power.
  • It helps to overcome old habits that previously increased injuries, aches and pains, even mental barriers.
  • It helps one to take risks safely, explore movements fully, oh, and HAVE FUN!
A dancers’ performance skills could be broken down even further to elements such as self-esteem, cognitive learning, goal setting, fitness, and dieting. While performance enhancement needs further research within the Gyrotonic and Gyrokinesis community, let alone the dance community, this barrier could be broken by reporting more experiences, more case studies, and relate findings to existing movement and sports research.

Read up:

Beyond Physical Practice

Dancers as Athletes

Dance Fitness

Dance Science and the Dance Technique Class

Gyrokinesis

Gyrotonic