Take off the tu-tus, the boys are taking over dance class. Dance is extremely physical and requires strength, poise, and skill. This is the perfect sport for boys, so why don’t we have more boys in dance classes?
A few years ago my boys decided they wanted to take break dancing classes. They had been learning on their own via YouTube and friends, but they were ready to get serious. We looked around for a dance school that offered the classes and found that there were only three studios that offered classes. Thankfully, we found an amazing school with an amazing teacher.
The class had about 10 kids, mostly boys. They loved learning the moves and the basics of break dancing. It helped them grow stronger and it was definitely a workout. They practiced at home and were destined to be the winners of “So You Think You Can Dance.” Well, that’s what I thought anyway. Then we moved and couldn’t find a class nearby, so they decided on another sport.
However, when I told a family member that my sons were taking dance classes, I caught a sideways look. “Dance classes?” I explained their love of breakdancing, but you know what guys who take dance classes are awesome. There is no need for the snide comments about a boy dancing. Public perception is changing regarding dancing and it starts with us, moms and dads.
Look at the guys on “Dancing With the Stars” and “So You Think You Can Dance.” They are extremely fit, strong, and wow, those legs. Ballroom dancing takes two and that mens they need men who can dance. The big questions is, why don’t we encourage them to take classes earlier? What is stopping them from learning ballet or modern dance?
More dance schools are realizing that boys will come if they are welcomed. Dance studios that offer classes like: Hip-hop, tumbling, capoeira, rhythm tap, movement for actors/stage combat, all-male ballet, etc. are a great way to get boys interested in dance. It also makes a big difference when there are male teachers and males in the classes.
Dance classes in and of themselves are awesome and can lead kids to great things. However, dance classes can also be an addition to other activities like football and basketball. Quite a few football players have taken dance classes to help with their focus, skill, balance, and much more. Professional fighters have found that dance classes benefit them in their sport. You can use these tidbits to win over the haters. If they still smirk after that, so be it. Dance is not just for girls and boys need to be encouraged and excited about this sport.