The mirror is a staple in a dance room. It can be
a helpful tool that assists dancers in self-correction and evaluating height, shape and placement. It helps to see movements from several perspectives, which leans to learn a choreography more
But, dancers can often become too reliant on the mirror and it becomes a hindrance instead of a tool. You are confident and know the choreo and then as soon as you face away from the mirror, it falls apart or you become troubles for cues, musicality and unison? Performing without mirror is an authentic task and should become the ultimate goal to be able to perform for audience and not only for mirrors:
• As dancers, we are constantly trying to develop
our kinesthetic awareness for performing correct moves. If you LOOK in the mirror all the time, can interrupt the level of awareness, because it makes you too reliant on visual feedback. Try to
FEEL it as well as a deeper level of mind-body connection and guidance in performing.
• Without a mirror dancers can avoid to focus excessively on visual image but more on the muscular sensations of a movement called proprioception - a critical ingredient for becoming a skilled dancer. Limited access to our proprioceptive self can slow down technical growth.
• If you are constantly checking the mirror while going across the floor or performing a phrase, it might be throwing off your head-tail connection. Your head might not be fulfilling the movement entirely or you feel dysbalance and tension because of trying to sneak a peek in the mirror.
• For dancers with body image issues, focusing the mirror and comparing with co-dancers, can cause negative feelings and self-criticism. Negative body image in the dance room can slow down a dancer’s technical development - the essential quality for smooth and dynamic performance.
• Set a goal of developing a balanced relationship with the mirror. Listen to the cues your body gives you as you dance and act upon them. Use the mirror selectively, only for a specific purpose in mind. Take responsibility for creating your optimal environment and progress in the dance room!