25 exercises for Dancers using Pool Noodles

Here’s the trailer for my new workshop:

25 Exercises for Dancers using a Pool Noodle

Summer is approaching and water toys are everywhere! During my days as a studio owner in Upstate NY, I often looked for inexpensive props to use for training my dancers in the studio. The Dollar Tree was (and is) my go to for cheap finds for classroom aids. I developed a ton of exercises using a pool noodle to train dancers in everything from Port de Bras to acro alignment. The noodles were easy to “customize” by cutting them to the correct size for each dancer. I used these techniques over the years at countless studios, teacher trainings and master class workshops and decided to create a workshop video for teachers. During this time of “at home training”, the exercises can all be done in a small area and could be a fun and engaging way to train during virtual teaching.

The Noodles are $1 each and you can get at least 2 props for each dancer out of one noodle. It might be something that teachers pick up and “deliver” to their dancers doorstep with a little note to create some excitement about online class and add a little personal touch.

Many of the exercises I have seen being done with a yoga block ( which is also a great classroom tool). I personally like the noodle because the material is less dense than a yoga block. Dancers tend to be overachievers and use counterproductive pressure when given a prop. The pool noodle will bend if too much pressure is applied, so muscle engagement is activated without being overworked.

The biggest struggle I had recording the video was having a student demonstrator. With the corona pandemic, I do not have access to the dancers I normally work with. I have a client, a non dancer, that I work with on acro /gymnastics at her home during the quarantine, but she is a very new, beginner level client. Most times, teachers have advanced level assistants/demonstrators who can make everything look easy and flawless and I was afraid a less polished demonstrator may reflect poorly on the program. But after some thought, I decided that using a new, beginner student could actually be MORE helpful to teachers viewing the workshop. Most of the students they will be working with will show some of the same “mistakes” and my cueing/correction could actually make the training more insightful for teachers.

The workshop is a 30 minute video recording created for dance educators. To access the video content contact me and I can get you registered. I have reduced ALL of my video workshops to only $10 until June 1st, in support of teacher continuing education during our stay at home orders.

The 25 exercises are probably things that you have seen and done before. However, the approach and use of the props I think can shed some new light for both dancers and teachers. There are literally 100s of exercises you can come up with using the noodles, and my goal is to inspire others to think out of the box when it comes to training. I would love to hear some skills/drills others come up with and use! Please share your exercises in the comments.

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