Happy Friday dancers and welcome back to From The Top! December is officially here and winter isn’t trailing too far behind. However, though Christmas may be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of winter, what also comes along with it can be cold weather, cold and flu season and tight muscles (eek!). Luckily, there are methods and preventive products to pack along with you to the studio to help make this season much more comfortable and even a little cozy! So without further ado, let’s talk about our dance bag essentials for the Winter!
Winter Essential #1
Now I know that for the last almost two years, hand sanitizer and the use of such has been practically seared into our brains. I completely get it. But believe it or not, this was an essential on my winter dance packing list far before the pandemic. Maybe it was because my Mother used to be a nurse or because I’ve seen all of the germy stuff that can go on in a dance studio, but I am a firm believer in packing hand sanitizer in your dance bag during the winter months. Just think about all the times people sneeze and then place their hands back on the bar or floor work when we are all on the ground, the same place where we (and every one in the class before us) has sweated and walked on. This is where the sanitizer comes in handy. By taking it along with you, you’re able to use it after class and even periodically during class to help be one step ahead of the cold and flu season cooties!
Winter Essential #2
In dance classes, ballet especially, we aren’t able to keep our warm-ups on for the entire class. However, for the time that we can, I always recommend layering up! Not only does it help warm your muscles up quicker, but it can also make heading into class far more comfortable when it’s bitterly cold outside. So though you may have on your cozy warm-up upon arrival, I suggest packing a few extras as well. Throwing in an extra pair of sweatpants, an extra scarf or even a cozy pair of fuzzy socks never hurt anyone!
Winter Essential #3
It indeed may be the most wonderful time of year, but we all know one thing that has a tendency to come along with it: those pesky little allergies! Whether it be itchy eyes or you’re sneezing up a storm, having extra allergy medicine on hand will help relieve any allergies you may be dealing with, especially if the dosage you’ve taken prior to class has worn off, or if your allergies come upon you suddenly during class. It’s all about staying proactive, my loves!
Winter Essential #4
If IcyHot ever needed a new spokesperson, I’d take it in a heartbeat. Because if there is one thing I know, it’s how to use IcyHot to my ultimate advantage as a dancer and now I’m about to put you on as well!
While IcyHot is often mentioned as a muscle recovery method post dance class, it works wonders as a pre-class warm up! Before you head into class, whether leaving from home or changing into your dancewear once you get to the studio,take a moment to rub down your tightest muscles with IcyHot. This may include your hamstrings, lower back, hip flexors or wherever you experience a little resistance once the winter weather sets in. Immediately after you apply it, change into your dancewear to help seal it in. Will you feel warm and fuzzy for a minute, yes. But will it help your muscles relax and unravel faster? YES! Once you’re done applying, throw it in your dance bag and pack it with you, and if you would like to apply a bit more later as a recovery method, that works wonderful as well!
Winter Essential #4
Heating Pad (What I Wish I Knew)
And finally on this list is something I wish I had personally done years back and that is, packing a heating pad with me to help keep my muscles warm in between classes. If you have some time between one dance class and the other, keeping a heating pad on any problem areas that you may have while you wait is an excellent way to keep warm and stop some of your muscles from cooling off so fast. Like the IcyHot method, it will also be a great way to be one step ahead and make your stretching/warm-up session that much easier!
Well that will do it for this week’s blog post! We hope that you all not only enjoyed reading today’s post, but even found some new essentials to throw into your bag this winter season! As always, we wish you a wonderful weekend and remember…