So you’ve arrived at the studio, and you have an extra 15-30 minutes to spare. What should you to do best prepare yourself for the upcoming dance lesson? While some may feel that their time is better spent doing something relaxing beforehand, others may feel that they need to get “pumped up” before they start dancing. Read on for some ideas on how to warm up before you go into dance class!

Read Notes from Your Previous Session

Just like you would review any other project feedback before continuing to work, dance is no different. If your instructor had given you some pointers to focus on with your dancing and you took note, reviewing them before your next dance session shows great initiative. Making the conscious effort to progress with your dancing will not only give you that little extra boost of motivation for your session, but will show your instructor you are taking their pointers to heart.

Listen to Music

Whether you like rock n’ roll, electronic, or classical, it can never hurt to listen to a bit of music before heading to dance class. Music has the power to help us de-stress, get motivated, and work harder than we would have otherwise. So plug in, sit back, and listen to some tunes and see how it changes your performance in your next dance class!

Do Some Light Jogging or Exercise

Getting the blood flowing a bit before you launch right into your routine will help to loosen you up and help you avoid injury. Light jogging, jumping jacks, or even some yoga/pilates will give you great leverage for your session and help your muscles warm up before the serious work begins. Just be careful not to over-exert yourself or make yourself too tired before your class!

Have a Small Snack

While having a full course meal is not advised before a dance class, a light snack such as yogurt or nuts is a good source of fuel for your dancing. Avoid fattier, greasier foods right before a session, as they will make you feel sluggish during your dancing. Make sure to sip on some water or light juice beforehand as well to make sure you are properly hydrated before going into your dance class! If you know that day is going to be particularly intense, it can also help your performance to sip on some Gatorade or other electrolyte-enriched beverages to avoid muscle cramps and fatigue.

When seeking out that competitive edge, it’s important to consider what you do both before and after your training sessions. While the session itself is of the upmost importance, your preparation and recovery will also be crucial to your overall performance. So try out some of the tips before your next dance class and see how it affects your dancing!