You’ve spent the last several months focused on, and tirelessly working towards, competing at an Irish dance major. With the competition behind you, NOW WHAT?
How do you move forward from the highs and lows of the competition?
How do you overcome the obstacles you faced at the competition?
How do you learn from those experiences and continue building upon them?
I’m here to help you. It's time to REST, REFLECT & REFOCUS.
STEP 1: REST
Rest your body
After spending day after day in the studio or at home training your technique and strength, it's time to give your body some rest. Rest will help your body recover and reduce the potential for burnout down the road. Many dancers may have also been pushing through a variety of aches and pains. It is important to address those issues and allow your body time to heal so that they do not become recurring problems in the future.
Rest your mind
Attending a major competition can be emotionally draining and stressful for dancers (parents & teachers, too!). Just as your body needs to rest, so does your mind. Reconnect with friends who you haven’t been able to spend much time with recently, meditate, read a book, do some things outside of dance and training that bring you peace and joy.
STEP 2: REFLECT
Now that you’re rested and refreshed, it’s time to assess what happened at the last competition. Get a notebook and write down everything that went well and everything that could use some improvements. Use the below questions to help guide your assessment.
- What was your goal for the major?
- Did you accomplish your goal?
- If so, what attributed to you reaching your goal?
- If not, what could you have done more of or changed about your training to reach it?
- What went well and/or what could you have improved about your TECHNIQUE leading up to the competition (think about all the notes your dance teachers give you…did you correct those?). Utilize tools like FeisTV to go back and watch your dancing.
- What went well and/or what could you have improved about your STRENGTH & FLEXIBILITY to better prepare you for the competition? (more power, hip mobility, leg strength, core stability, etc)
- What went well and/or what could you have improved about your MENTALITY before and on the day of the competition? (were you nervous, focused, energized?)
- What went well and/or what could you have improved on with your training and practice schedule before the competition? Were you consistent?
STEP 3: REFOCUS
We’ve rested, we’ve learned from the last competition, and now, it’s time to refocus and take action.
Start off by setting your next goal. What is your next major and what goal do you want to reach?
What do you need to do to reach that goal? Get REAL specific. Look at your assessments from the last competition and most likely, these are the items you need to improve on.
START NOW (well, after your rest period). Don’t wait until your a couple months out from a major to begin intense training. If you are serious about accomplishing your goals, get serious about them now. Chip away at the elements you need to work on every day. Once you accomplish one, go on to the next.
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