I don’t think there is a perfect practice regime. I often see that couples practice in the same way and fashion every day. May be they’ve found the best way to practice for them, or may be it is the only way they know how to practice.
Here are 10 ways to make your practice immediately more effective. By implementing a few of them you will see better results in a short period of time
1. Have a plan… Make a plan before you come to practice. This will keep you focussed on what you want to do and not on how long you want practice. If you know what you want to practice you will be more effective and efficient. Make sure your practice plan is part of an overall and larger plan. Execute it and don’t deviate from it.
2. Warm up… A good warming up will increase the progression you make in practice. Wrong warming up on the other hand can cause some serious injuries. An example is stretching, the wrong stretching exercises can do damage to your muscles. A good warming up brings you quicker to a higher pace and quality of dancing. Note that a good cooling down is equally important.
3. Change it up….Practicing is also a matter of discipline. Very often a good quality of movement can only be achieved by repetition. That doesn’t mean that you cannot incorporate varieties in your trainingsregime to keep you motivated. Practice for instance on a good variety of music.
4. Don’t be alone…. There is a time for everything. Practicing alone with your partner is a good thing. On the other hand practicing with more people will often energize you more. It is also an excellent way to gain confidence and to get comfortable to dance in front of other people.
5. Track your progress…Bring a notepad with you, reflect and write down what progressions you have made in your practice session. This practice logbook offers an excellent input for your trainingsplan (see point 1) and private lessons, but serves as a strong motivator as well.
6. Reward yourself…most of us love positive reinforcement. Reward yourself after a good practice or after a week of good practice. Set an ambitious goal and when you made it, you give yourself a treat. Pick something desirable and not too serious so that you really see it as a treat.
7. Work with a coach…Work with a/your coach on a regular base during practices. Make sure that practice doesn’t turn into a lesson. Focus on building routine and performance skills. Many dance/ballet companies work with professional ‘repetiteurs’. Implementing such a principle will speed up your development.
8. Get competitive… If you are preparing for a competition, imitate a competitive setting during training this can be done with others, but you can also focus in every practice to beat your personal best.
9. Dance your routines without stopping… Always end your practice session with dancing your routines without stopping. This will help you to continue even when it’s not perfect yet (it never will be) and it builds stamina and confidence.
10. Have a practice mantra… Know what you are practicing for. Create your own powerful mantra. Something like ‘I just want to become better’ is not strong enough. Your personal practice mantra needs to motivate and energize you.
“Be inspired and you shall inspire.”