Dos & Don’ts of the Perfect Irish Dance Warmup
Updated: Feb 16
DON’T gloss over your warmup
Warmups are a necessary component of your dance class to optimize your performance and decrease your risk of injury.
DO break a sweat
The purpose of warmup is to increase your body temperature to prepare yourself for subsequent activity. Hence the name, “warmup”.
DON’T use a different warmup before a competition or performance than you do in class
It is important for dancers to be familiar with their warmup.
DO perform dynamic stretches
Dynamic stretches should begin slowly and gradually increase in power and speed.
DON’T perform static stretching
Static stretching should be performed AFTER your dance class where the goal is to increase flexibility. Additionally, the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science reports that, “stretching has been shown to impair subsequent performance parameters such as strength, power, endurance, blaance, grip strength, spring time, jumping height, reaction time and movement time.”1
DO perform dance-specific movements
Your warmup should emphasize dance-specific movements that emulate the movements you’ll perform in dance class.
Review the difference between dynamic and static stretching in our previous post, Stretching for Irish Dancers: Dynamic vs Static Stretching
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1. Critchfield, B. (2011) Resource Paper: Stretching for Dancers. Retrieved from https://www.iadms.org/page/353
Photo by Joe Mazza