Value of Technical training


While dancing has been a long standing human practice of expression and celebration in the past history, it has mostly been used for creative and socialization purposes, up until the current century with a wide range of dance variety that appeal to different societies and are used by different cultures to pass different messages. However In the contemporary society, dance is also increasingly being accepted as a credible career path just like any other sport or profession, including Ballerina and other contemporary dances including “B-balling’ and “step” however for effective high paced dancing such as the variety in the contemporary dancing, human body fitness is critical. Fitness enhances performance and endurance at the same time limiting injuries thereby highlighting among the important factors and reasons for taking up training as a dancer.


Training Practices

A wide range of training practices including technical training exist to ensure proper training and preparation for contemporary dancers. Mackrell (2019) highlights among the major components of dancing and dancers to include physical requirements which can only be effectively achieved through training. Aujla and Redding (2013) point out that, dancers being performing artists, makes their bodies an instrument through which the art is created, as such the quality of the dance/art presented eventually is greatly dependent on the physical qualities and skills that dancers possess. As such the value of technical training among contemporary dancers significantly is to impact the fitness of the body including: Improving strength, stamina, expressive movement, flexibility, mental capacity, posture, alignment and many other factors as concerns body strength and fitness.

Weiss (2011) emphasizes that dancing, especially in the contemporary space calls upon all aspects of fitness and is also key in minimizing injury, enhancing eventual performance and ensuring a long lasting dancing career. As such fitness alludes to the maximum wellness in an individual’s body and mind state of being and aims critically to minimize the difference between an individual’s maximal abilities and their performance requirements. While different types of dances require different elements of fitness and thus different types of technical training as compared to others, in the contemporary dance style which according to Bedinghaus (2019)combines elements of various dance genres including: Modern, Jazz, lyrical and classic ballet, a more inclusive training process is required to ensure dancers’ fitness. This will probably include a wide range of training activities and types which are collectively referred to as technical training for dancers (Hayes, 2015)

Different Technical training activities as such include a consideration of all the components of fitness including: Aerobic and anaerobic fitness, Muscle endurance, strength, power, flexibility, neuromuscular coordination, Body composition as well as rest (Weiss, 2011). Hayes (2015) further adds that technical training also considers other factors such as enhancing body posture, alignment, balance, mobility, mental capacity and control. Different technical training activities are associated with each and every type of fitness and collectively they all eventually impact body fitness which enhances performance in contemporary dancing.

Aerobic fitness includes the ability of a dancer’s body to be able to work longer at moderate heart rate before becoming fatigued (Hayes, 2015). This increases the overall endurance of the entire body towards fatigue in the process of dancing and is critical for contemporary dancers especially considering the length and vigor in contemporary dances. Technical training associated with improving aerobic fitness includes repetition of simple movements which are significant in improving the heart rate and stretching the aerobic energy system. Anaerobic fitness on the other hand is important in determining and stressing the threshold at which lactate starts to accumulate in the blood stream and significantly hindering muscle functioning. Its training utilizes activity of a maximal all out effort for short periods of time including an exercise to rest ratio of 1:3 (Weiss, 2011).

Sonia (2010) highlights that a wide range of research exist with regards to demonstrating that supplemental strength training can lead to much improved dancing and minimize occurrence of dance injuries, contrary to concerns that increased muscle strength can negatively impact flexibility and aesthetic appearance. Weiss (2011) highlights however that given the wide range of strength training techniques including weight lifting, resistance and minimal activity repetitions, dancers can with moderation apply some of the technical strength training especially ones specific to the desired outcome. Power training is critical given that most contemporary dancing techniques include jumping as an integral part. Jumping requires both muscular strength and elasticity which can be achieved through plyometric training.

A more important element of dancing however not just contemporary dancing but virtually all types of dancing techniques includes flexibility. Weiss (2011) highlights that flexibility it is essential in complimenting muscular strength, building efficiency in movement as well as coordination which prevents occurrence of injuries. Stretching muscles is the most efficient and common technical training for flexibility. Heyward (2010) points out that holding muscle in a stretched position for a prolonged amount of time impacts the muscle fibers to become accustomed to new lengths and consequently impact flexibility. Neuromuscular coordination is additionally an important element of dance training and Weiss (2011) points out that it can positively impact levels of muscle strengths by controlling and recruitment of the right number of muscle fibers at the right time. Eventually, while training is quite crucial to the eventual performance and practice of contemporary dancers their body composition normally expressed in terms of Body fat is equally crucial and determines the types of diet that dancers should indulge.

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Technical training represents a critical aspect of professionalism in contemporary dance and can in fact be taken up as part of the requirements for effective dance performances. Its value is to ensure optimum body fitness among dancers which is critical to the body. A Fit body in itself regardless of whether one is a dancer or not, feels good and is much healthier, however for dancers, a physically and mentally fit body is part of their presentation and performance and greatly impact the quality of dance as well as limit instances of injury. While injuries can be inevitable in the end, technical training and fitness also plays an important role in enabling faster recovery processes among dancers and athletes.


Aujla, I. and Redding, E. (2013). Barriers to dance training for young people with disabilities. British Journal of Special Education, 40(2), pp.80-85.

Bendinghaus T. (2019). What is Contemporary dance? [Online]. Available at

Heyward V. Advanced Fitness Assessment and Exercise Prescription (6th ed). Champaign IL: Human Kinetics, 2010.

Mackrell J. R. (2019). Components of the dance. [online] Available at

Sonia R. (2010) Considerations for integrating fitness into dance training. Journal of Dance Medicine and Science. 14(2)pp 45-49

Weiss D. S. (2011). Dance Fitness. International Association of Dance Medicine and Science. [online]. Available at

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