As you get ready for year end performances and competitions, keep these 9 tips in mind to reduce pre-show jitters.
Get plenty of rest
Nerves keeping you up at night? We’ve been there. It’s easy to say get plenty of rest, but what if you’re trying and still tossing and turning?
Go to bed early and stay off of your phone for a few hours before bedtime. Screen use before bed messes with your internal rhythms.
If you still can’t shut off your brain, try journaling those thoughts. Sometimes getting it down on paper gets it out of your head.
Reading is also a good relaxing distraction to ease you into sleep.
We’re sure you’ve heard this one before, but staying hydrated not only keeps your muscles in shape, it also aids in digestion (to ease a nervous stomach) and keeps headaches away. Too little intake also leads to fatigue. Aim for 2 litres per day, plus 16-20 ounces an hour before you perform.
Make a Check List
Nothing is more stressful than getting to a performance having forgotten a key part of your gear. Or running around before you’re out the door trying to remember what you need. In the weeks before you perform, go through your dances, costumes and accessories and make a check list. Pack your gear the night before and mark items off your list. You’ll feel better knowing you have everything you need.
Stay away from sugar
We all love a little sweet snack now and then, but too much sugar cause spikes and crashes in your metabolism. These spikes can make you feel over anxious and jittery, and the crashes will make you feel sluggish, which is definitely not good before you hit the stage.
Don’t over-do training
We get it, you want to be prepared. But there’s something to be said for being over prepared. One, overtraining can lead to muscle strain or worse. Two, your body needs rest to keep a calm mind. If you’re having trouble finding a balance, ask your teacher how much training you should do outside of class
Warm ups are there to get your muscles ready to perform. Dynamic exercises get your muscles ready stretch further, important when doing your leaps!
Practice Meditative Breathing
There’s no need to go full on meditation trance, but practicing breathing helps calm the mind and prep the body. Find a quiet place and sit or lie down. Focus on your breathing. If you mind wanders, and it will, bring it back to your breath. Feel your breath filling each part of your body. Five or ten minutes is a good start.
Put on some Good Music
Don’t underestimate the power of the perfect playlist. We know you have that song that gets you pumped. Put on your headphones and tune out the rest of the world for a bit to get you in peak performance mode. What is your perfect song right now? Share with us on social or in the comments.
Even if you’re not in the mood, smile. The term, “fake it till ya make it” applies here. A smile, even if you’re not feeling it, will improve your mood. Even if you’re not feeling confident, a smile projects confidence and eases pre-show jitters. Put your best face, and foot, forward!