Dance & Ballet

Ballerina, Choreography, Modern Dance

In This Guide:

Many children dream of becoming a ballerina or a professional dancer when they grow up. But when dance becomes more than just an after school activity, the pressures of perfect form, mental toughness and putting training above all else can start to build. In this guide, consider what aspiring dancers may be going through and how you can support them through it all. 

They Might Be Thinking:

  • Do I have the right form? 
  • Am I holding my position correctly?
  • Have I put in enough work to know the piece without thinking?
  • Do I look graceful?
  • Is my body shape appropriate?
  • Am I finding the right balance between nutrition and body fitness?
  • What does my body need for the day?
  • How do I get through my training without injury?
  • Am I understanding the combinations correctly with the counts?
  • Am I taking care of my feet?
  • Can I do this professionally?
  • The girls in my company seem so competitive.
  • Do I need to lose another 5 pounds?
  • What will I do if I get a stress fracture? How long will it take to heal?
  • Am I attractive enough to be a dancer?

Words That Might Be Encouraging:

  • Focus on the details. Make it look beautiful.
  • Consistency is more important than one impressive moment.
  • Don’t be afraid to fail. Believe in yourself.
  • You have impeccable footwork.
  • Be attentive to your own body.
  • Relax, Relax, Relax. Tension leads to injury.
  • Watch what you eat, but don’t get too obsessed with body shape.
  • Believe in yourself.
  • Success requires sacrifice if you really want to be good at something.
  • Be willing to listen to criticism as coaching.
  • Don’t take anything personally.
  • Focus your energy and be efficient with your movements.
  • Understand your personal strengths to make them better.
  • Minimize your weaknesses, but don’t waste too much energy on your natural limitations.
  • Keep your attitude in the moment. Listen closely.
  • Be aware of the thoughts that are helping you, instead of letting your thoughts control you.
  • Have fun going into class. Don't forget to laugh.
  • If the steps don’t feel fun, try to make them fun.
  • If you have a bad class, just shake it off.
  • Make sure you try to find the right balance between ballet and regular life.
  • Don't be afraid to find a mentor if you are dancing in a company.
  • Can I have a social life if I want to dance seriously?

Words That Might Be Discouraging:

  • You don’t have the right body type to be a professional dancer.
  • You are not disciplined enough to make it in ballet.
  • You can't have a social life if you want to dance seriously.
  • You don't seem to be listening to the music.
  • You look really nervous on stage.
  • You don't seem to be very confident on stage.
  • Your transitions aren't looking very good.
  • You are not holding your positions correctly.
  • Your rolls down to point do not seem like you are enjoying the movements.
  • You don't seem smooth or lyrical in your movements.
  • Your technique is not good enough.
See Personalized Encouragement Recommendations for Someone You Care About
Personalize: Name & Relationship (sign-in/up to complete personal profile information to improve encouragement recommendations)
Select relationship type
Was this guide helpful?
Your rating will help us improve this encouragement guide.