Updated: Aug 27
Dance is all adrenaline and feel-good hormones! We sometimes don't feel the soreness, but it's there: our core, feet, back, legs and shoulders are really working and we forget that we can aid our body with just a little self-love. Here are some of the must-have, everyday goodies for dancers to keep dancing! Bundle these as a complete gift bag for your favorite dancer - and yourself 😉
PS all of these items I've bought and tested myself, so you're getting the real scoop from a real dancer.
1. Back ache and neck knots? Racketballs really work!
You won't believe how simple this hack is. A physical therapists recommended years ago that I use a racketball ball (click for blue) to knead out any knots in my back and neck at home. If you have any major injuries please consult with your own physical therapist on this one before trying!
How to: place the racketball on the floor and lay down on top of it, wherever your knot is. When you find the center of the knot, relax your weight onto it. Just breathe and hold there until you feel the pain dissipate. Then roll onto the ball slowly and repeat to relax the muscles around the knot.
It is not superfluous to say that such a small and simple object does an amazingly effective job of honing in on the knot, getting the kinks out and relieving the pain. Many people have attested to the same. Without having to use any more pressure than that of your own weight, you will forever have one wherever you go. It is portable, after all.
If you're dancing or physically active in any way, arch support cushions are a must! I personally bought these and love them because they are covered in a soft material, which feels great and doesn't make my feet to sweat, like other gel pads that don't have that covering. The only downside is that the glue doesn't hold for long on certain materials, so you could supplement with super glue when the original glue wears off. Overall, a great buy, though! This pack comes in various colors to match different shoe colors.
Foot pads to alleviate metatarsalgia (pain in the metatarsals and balls of your foot). Again, I love that these gel pads are in a cloth sleeve. They have different sizes and I've found them great in my day-to-day dance classes. Note: dancers with wide feet may not find that these fit comfortably.
A good friend of mine and Kizomba instructor, Davidson, seemed to be able to dance without problem until 5am, teach during the day, and then dance until 5am the next night all over again!
Q: His secret to healing sore feet? A: Epsom salt foot soak!
Davidson swears by it and after personally testing it out, that little TLC sure makes your feet happy again! This combo has lavender for relaxing at night, and eucalyptus & mint for revitalizing and starting your day with energy.
4. Dance tote
Keep these items on hand wherever you go in a dance tote bag. Forming habits helps you in all aspects of life, so form the habit of keeping all of your dance stuff in a bag that shows how much you love to dance! 100% cotton, so it's biodegradable and guilt-free.
Bookmark this list. It makes the best "gift basket" for a dancer for their birthday, Christmas or any celebration!