14 Oct

9 Ways To Beat Anxiety As A Teen

One thing we’ve learned from working with so many teens is that anxiety is one of the biggest hurdles that this age group faces. Let’s face it- nowadays life is a lot more busy and hectic than ever before. From the unrealistic standards of social media to endless school exams to those performance nerves that always seem to come back, being a teen can be so tough! And unfortunately having so much stress in your daily life can cause anxiety. Symptoms of anxiety include nervousness, agitation, tension, a racing heart, shortness of breath and chest pain. Any of this sound familiar? Please know you are NOT alone and that there are ways to manage anxiety, here are so good starter tips!

 

1. Practice deep breathing

Beat Anxiety- belly breathingDid you know that when we are anxious we tend to take quick and shallow breaths? Opposite to this, deep breathing techniques have been proven to help us relax in the most anxious of times. Practicing deep breathing settles your body and slows your mind. When you breathe in deeply through your nose, your lungs fully expand and your belly rises, slowing down your heart rate and making you feel more relaxed. So the next time you’re feeling anxious, slow your breathing down and make sure it goes all the way down to your belly. Focus all of your awareness on your breath.

 

2. Do some exercise

 

Beat Anxiety - workoutExercise is one of the best ways to burn off anxious energy. Studies show that people who exercise regularly are less likely to suffer from anxiety than those who don't exercise. Through physical activity, mental stress is relieved. There are countless benefits to exercise. It lowers your body's stress hormones, releases endorphins, and can improve the quality of your sleep. Plus- when you exercise regularly, you tend to feel more confident in your body, which results in a stronger mental wellbeing. Try finding a physical activity you enjoy- whether it be walking, dancing or yoga!  

 

3. Talk to someone

Beat Anxiety - talk

Support from your friends and family is so important during hard times. To beat anxiety, try taking a walk with your best friend (or whoever you feel most comfortable venting to) and just talk it out! Sometimes just getting things off your chest by vocalizing it does miracles in lowering anxiety levels. Talk through all of your anxious thoughts- you’ll feel much better after doing it!

 

4. Write down your feelings

Beat Anxiety - write

If vocalizing and talking isn’t your thing, try expressing your anxious thoughts through writing. You might want to keep a journal or even write up a quick pros and cons list. Research shows that even creative writing has helped teens manage anxiety. While writing about what your problems is one approach to feeling better, don’t forget to try jotting down all the things you are grateful for! 

 

5. Mindfulness & Meditate

Beat Anxiety - meditate

Once you feel anxiety creeping in, turn off your phone, find a quiet place, light some candles, and try to meditate. Meditation is a great tool for managing anxiety, as it helps slow racing thoughts, making it easier to manage stress and anxiety. There are a variety of meditation styles, including mindfulness and meditation during yoga. Practicing mindfulness is great because it focuses you in the present moment, which in turn combats any negative thinking that often triggers anxiety.

 

6. Simplify your life

Beat Anxiety - simplifySometimes taking on way more than you can handle can cause you to feel anxious. Juggling way too many commitments, whether it be family, work or school related, can leave you feeling extremely overwhelmed. The key to beating anxiety in this case is to simplify your life. It’s okay to say “no” when you’re too busy to take on any new responsibilities. You have the control to be selective with what you take on. By simplifying your life, you’ll also be able to more effectively manage your time, which will dramatically make you feel less stressed and anxious. 

 

7. Practice Gratitude

Beat Anxiety - gratitudeAnxiety occurs when we are focused on things we do not want, things that scare us or general overwhelm. Our thoughts dictate our feelings and our feelings dictate our life! A great interceptor of negative thoughts is gratitude. Stopping and switching your focus to all the good things in your life, all the things you are grateful for (i.e. my breakfast this morning, the fact I have clothes to wear, my Mum for taking care of me) will take you away from any negative thoughts and help you realise you have it pretty good. Focus on the positive and you will see more of the positive show up in your life. Focus on the negative, and, you guessed it, you will get more of the negative! 

 

8. Self Talk

Beat Anxiety - self talkWhat we say to ourselves is the number one factor determining our happiness in life. When we are feeling anxious, we are literally stressing ourselves out due to what is playing on the tape inside our heads. Two people can witness the same situation but have completely different experiences purely based on what they are saying to themselves before, during and after the event. So next time you are starting to feel that anxiety creep up say to yourself “I’ve got this”, “I can do this”, “I am strong”, “I am amazing”, “I know how to do this”, “Everything is going to work out perfectly”, “This is kind of fun!”. Even if you do not believe yourself in the beginning and if you continue to say words of encouragement to yourself, your inner being will start to come around and you will see your inner confidence begin to blossom. You will also be able to handle stressful situations a lot easier. EVERYTHING is mindset, and it all starts with how you talk to yourself in your own head.

 

9. Embrace the ‘7 Principles of Health’

Beat Anxiety - 7 principles of healthMake sure you check out our ‘7 principles of health article’ and read all the goodies in there re steps you can take to make your life work for you! Such good stuff! You can find it here.

Anxiety is common, but it does not need to be. You have the power to control your thoughts. They are your thoughts. It they are no longer serving you, it is time to do things a little differently. Work towards implementing the 9 practices mentioned above into your daily life and see how your life transforms. You’ve got this. We believe in you!

06 May

Have A Look Inside A Dance Mom’s Bag

Ever wonder what’s really inside a Dance Mom’s bag? Why is it so big? What could she possibly need to bring when she’s not even dancing?

We thought we’d have a little bit of fun and have a peak. From hair spray to double-sided tape to baby wipes there’s bound to be something to help in any dance emergency! Scroll down to have a look inside the ever so mysterious Dance Mom bag.

 

have a look inside

06 May

8 Signs That You’re Definitely A Dance Mom (or Dad)

Photo credit: Dance Moms TV Series

It starts with the first day you sign your 4-year-old daughter up for her first ballet class. Before you know it, your days are consumed with rehearsals, competitions and performances. And just like that - You officially become a Dance Mom (or Dad).

Just for fun, here are some telltale signs that you too have become a Dance Mom (or Dad)...

1. Your superpower is being able to whip together a perfect bun in under 10 seconds.

Hair Daddy GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

2. Your furniture is constantly pushed to the side to make room for practice.

Hold Purse GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

3. You never leave the house without hairspray.

Season 4 Netflix GIF by Fuller House - Find & Share on GIPHY

4. Or makeup…

makeup hair dance recital kids e1553188056425

5. Your child’s dance teachers are starting to see your child more than you do.

This Will Be Fun Dance Moms GIF by Lifetime Telly - Find & Share on GIPHY

6. You suddenly become “that mom” with the loudest hoot and holler in the audience!

Happy Oprah Winfrey GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

7. And you’re basically a backup dancer for the team because you’ve watched so many rehearsals!

Mean Girls Dancing GIF by T. Kyle - Find & Share on GIPHY

8. Last but not lease, there’s no prouder feeling than seeing your child share their passion with the world… Being a Dance Mom (or Dad) is just the best!

Chloe Lukasiak Dance GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

12 Dec

8 great gifts for dancers

With the holidays just around the corner, have you figured out what to buy the special dancer in your life? There are actually some pretty cool gifts that are perfect to give dancers, but most of us don’t have the time to search for them. To make shopping easier for you, we’ve come up with a list of the 8 Best Gifts for Dancers!

 

1. Dance Bracelet

bracelet

The dancer in your life will love this &5678 dance bracelet!

It’s a bracelet featuring those 4 magical numbers that only dancers will understand. Instead of buying your dance friend a friendship bracelet, you could get matching ones of these! Adorable!

 

2. Personalized Dance Bag

bag

Have you ever seen a cuter dance bag before in your life?!

The dancer in your life will head to dance class full of sass, sporting this sparkly sequin dance bag. Monogrammed your dancer’s name on it… She will love it!

 

3. Personalized Ballet Water Bottle

waterbottle

With hectic weeks full of dance classes, rehearsals and competitions, it’s important for dancers to stay hydrated! This personalized dance water bottle can be filled with plenty of water to keep your dancer hydrated! Drink up!

 

4. Beauty Box

beautybag

This gift thinks outside of the box (literally), and helps the dancer in your life organize their beauty products. Between competitions and recitals, this beauty box offers plenty of spaces to organize beauty treasures, keeping your dancer looking their best!

 

5. Full Body Massage

massage

Aaaah! Just the thought of a massage instantly relaxes your body. Imagine how much tension and pain is in a dancer’s body after hours and hours of non stop dance practice! Give the dancer in your life the relaxation she deserves.

Google search a spa nearest you!

 

6. Flexibility Stretch Band

flexibilityband1

This is exactly what every dancer needs!

A flexibility stretch band can help perfect your splits, kicks and more! The 100% latex band wraps safely around your body in a variety of ways, helping you perform deeper stretches. This would be a perfect stocking stuffer for a dancer who wants to increase their flexibility.

 

7. Dancer’s Clock

dancersclock

The time to dance is always with this super cool black and white clock.

This dancer's clock features the most important numbers - 5, 6, 7, 8 - making it a great gift for a dancer or your dance teacher. You can even add a name to personalize it!

 

8. SHE SHINES ON Dance Tour

SSOimage

How could we forget the best gift idea ever? … A SHE SHINES ON dance tour of course!

On one of our tours your dancer will dance with some of the world’s best choreographers, perform on stage at Disney, create friendships that’ll last a lifetime, and open their eyes to a world of opportunities! It’s an opportunity of a lifetime, and the tools your dancer will discover on tour are everlasting.

14 Nov

Kate Reid – This trip really was the trip of a lifetime

I remember seeing the note from Performance Net over a year ago, to come and meet the wonderful Kim Davey and find out about World Class Dance Tours and a trip of a lifetime.  Kim addressed a school hall full of mums, dads and children wannabes with a captivating presence and infectious passion for taking what you love (dance) and turning that into a career.  Mia my daughter who was 12 years old at the time left this session in complete awe of Kim and pleading with me to let her and her sister (Ella age 10 yrs) go on this tour.  Mia could not stop speaking about it for days ‘Mummy, dancing is all I’ve ever wanted to do, I want this more than anything, I’ll do chores!’. So, mum and dad caved and we decided to take the plunge, start saving and sign up.  We also decided to take my Mum – Marnie (Age 72 years) and let granny be part of the girls on tour! To be honest, I initially thought it was going to be a bit over organised, like going on a tour group where you don’t have any flexibility to do your own thing and I was worried that for the investment, we could have put that towards a family trip.  I couldn’t have been more wrong. This trip really was the trip of a lifetime.  Kim and Tiffany our guides (and now friends) were absolutely amazing.  No stone was left unturned and each day was more amazing than the first.   They completely exceeded our expectations – from dancing workshops (Latin, Twerking, Hip Hop, Jazz Funk), to performing on Hollywood Boulevard, to being in a live televised performance of Dancing with the Stars to dancing on the stage at Disneyland – it just kept getting better.  I would recommend the trip to anyone who has boys or girls who love to dance.  The workshops with professional dancers were so professional, exposing the kids to performance and dance that ‘gets under your skin’.  Each session was high energy and the teaching was amazing.  The children were kept busy every day, but seemed to have endless energy despite full days of dancing – easy to do when you love what you are doing with inspiring teachers. From a personal point of view, it was such a fantastic experience to be able to take my Mum on tour as a family member. Kim and Tiff looked after her so well and included her in everything.  She felt very special and thoroughly enjoyed being part of this amazing experience with her granddaughters.  For her it was a trip of a lifetime and she is already trying to persuade her Mahjong group to sign up for the over 40’s trip to Rio! Thank you Kim and Tiffany for making our time with you so rewarding, for all the organising that went in behind the scenes to make our trip seem hassle-free.  Tiffany you have an amazingly positive spirit and you were such an inspiration to our girls, we miss you a lot. Mia and Ella have built amazing friendships with everyone who went on tour, friendships to treasure and nurture for a lifetime.  I’m sure we will all be planning our next tour so we can build on our first one.  Thanks to Clare our amazing dance teacher at Performance Net for investing so much of yourself in coaching our children to be the best they could be.  Thanks to Tracey & Mike Stretton for an incredible performance school that has exposed Mia and Ella to a wonderful family and incredible experiences – thanks for taking the risk to sign Performance Net up to the L.A. Dance Tour. Kate Reid, Chaperone Pform.nz, April 2017
14 Nov

Abby Hewitt – Incredible, Inspiring and soo much FUN!!

If I could describe this tour in three words, I would choose incredible, inspiring and so much FUN! I recently went on the Los Angeles 2017 tour and I can safely say it was the best trip and experience of my life! The things I learned and gained from being a part of it will stay with me my whole life, it was so so eye opening and such great exposure to the professional dance world.

The opportunities on tour were unbelievable! I loved that we got to attend so many classes, workshops and personal development sessions with such incredible, professional and inspiring people. I had so much fun taking classes, sightseeing, going to the theme parks, and lots (and lots) of shopping! We danced at amazing studios that, before the tour I had dreamed of dancing at, like IDA, Edge Performing Arts Centre and Millennium! I also absolutely looooved all the shopping! And I loved going to the theme parks like Universal Studios and Disneyland, and doing the must-do’s in LA like Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Hollywood Boulevard and the Abby Lee Dance Company was all pretty amazing. Not to mention going to a live taping of Dancing with the Stars, and actually getting to be in it! The level of dance over there is so intense and it was so much fun to be a part of it. It was also crazy to come home and see TV shows/ads, movies, celebrity posts from LA and be able to say “I’ve been there!”!

The WCDT team is absolutely amazing. Everything was so organised and thought-out! I always felt prepared for every day because they did such a great job at keeping us informed of everything we were doing. There was something planned for us every day which I loved. The tour managers are so lovely and positive and such awesome people. I had heaps of fun getting to know them and sharing some pretty funny stories with them. They were always so helpful in answering and sorts of questions we had and I learnt so much about LA life from them!

I am so grateful for the people I met and what they taught me. I met my best friends while training for this tour, and became so much closer with them on the tour. I love that WCDT was what allowed me to do so! The dance teachers and instructors we worked with were so inspiring and we learned crazy amazing things from them. Everything from the life lessons to the choreography to the way of thinking in LA is so fresh and new and unlike anything else. I had so much fun getting to talk to people that live in LA like waiters at restaurants and shop keepers on the boulevard! They were always so fascinated by us Kiwis and we had some really interesting conversations with them.

As someone who wants a career in the performing arts, everything I gained from this tour was so valuable and is the best possible way to dive right in to the professional dance world and the opportunities it has to offer. We worked with people that are/were working professional dancers in the industry. Another pretty awesome thing about this tour was coming home and looking at viral dance videos and videos that my favourite dancers/choreographers have posted, and realising that they were filmed in the very studios that we danced in!


I learned the most about dance, motivation and myself in those 12 days than I ever could have imagined. You get exposed to so many new ways of thinking about your dancing, your career paths and mostly your life! This tour has taught me to always put in 100% of myself into anything I do and never hold back, because “how you do anything is how you do everything”. I learned about how important it is to set goals for yourself and to believe in them. Since doing the tour, everything I learned has made me work so much harder and think so much more productively and feel so much more motivated! This is so much more than just a dance tour. I came home from the trip and applied everything I learned to everything I do and I can feel so much improvement.

It really will change your life! I came home feeling, and still feel so inspired and I’m buzzing with everything I learned. You meet so many inspiring people and learn so so many things and the experiences and memories will truly last you your life. I can’t thank WCDT enough for giving me the experience and opportunity they did. I will always always remember everything about this tour and continue to apply it to everythingI do. It is absolutely worth doing, I 100000% recommend it and can guarantee it will change your life as much as it changed mine.

Abby Hewitt, Dancer

Pform.nz, April 2017

06 Mar

Bryce Campbell – It will be life changing!

Hi all, I'm Bryce Campbell from Tauranga, NZ... Early in 2014 my daughter Isla Campbell came home excited about the prospect of the performing arts classes of Otumoetai College touring to LA in 2015. So who's this World Class Dance Tours I say? Lots of questions and anyway a few weeks later a very excited lady called Kim gave us an AMAZING presentation. Yes the word amazing has come up lots, before during and after this trip. Chaperones where also required and to cut a long story short I joined in and in July 2015 off we went! I was excited about the tourist attractions but as I learnt, this trip was soooo much more than that! As a parent you can have your doubts about these things but I can honestly say this experience was worth it's weight in gold for us all. Kim packs sooooo much in it's quite amazing. We were all worn out and slept well on the flight home, something I usually find difficult to do. As Isla has written she since been back to LA and studied for three months at one of the studios you get to dance at on tour (IDA). I am very proud of her development along with the on going support Kim offers. The even bumped into each other in LA!!! In short, this tour is quite possibly one of the best things your teenager will ever get the opportunity to do. It will be life changing an is an excellent investment in their future. Love the on going contact and support past tour participants too. Yes Kim..... it was AMAZING! Cheers, Bryce Campbell
09 Feb

Isla Campbell – Sometimes you just need that little reminder that you are good enough

My name is Isla Campbell, I’m from Tauranga, New Zealand and I went on the LA tour in July 2015. I started dancing from a very young age and there’s nothing in this world that I love more, it is my absolute passion and I’ve known for a very long time that I want to make a career out of it. When I first heard about the tour I knew I had to go. Dancing at some of the biggest studios in LA such as, IDA, Millennium and The Edge, plus going to Disney Land, Universal Studios and shopping until I drop, I mean what more could a girl want? It seemed like a dream come true. But what we experienced on this wonderful tour was so much more, and the best part? World Class Dance Tours made it a reality. One of my favourite things about this tour was most definitely all the classes I got to take. screen-shot-2017-02-09-at-5-33-08-pmBut it wasn’t just about taking part in a lesson, it was about meeting insanely talented dancers and choreographers who got to share their knowledge and their journey with us, how they got to where they are now. Everyone’s journey is so different and it’s so amazing to be able to learn from these people. I really wanted to take in all this information and let it inspire and motivate me to become nothing but the absolute best I can be. I loved every class I took, from ballet to hip hop to burlesque and even twerking! But my favourite class I took was Jazz funk with the incredible Michael Silas, seen in the photo on the right. Not all of it was what I was used to, I got to explore different styles and was forced to step out of my comfort zone. screen-shot-2017-02-09-at-5-33-22-pmAnother highlight of the tour would have to be dancing on Hollywood boulevard. The fact that I got to dance on Hollywood boulevard itself was amazing but the amount of people that stopped and watched us was even crazier. It was an experience I will never forget. Dancing aside, we can’t forget about the tourist activities! Because this was my first over seas trip it was my first time going to Disney Land, so I was very excited as I’m sure you can imagine. Getting the opportunity to dance on the stage there was pretty special too. It’s true what they say, it really is thescreen-shot-2017-02-09-at-5-33-33-pm happiest place on earth. I also loved universal studios and the Warner Bro’s studio tour. The shopping was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed our day at Santa Monica, soaking up the beautiful Cali sun on the beach and exploring the Pier. We also got to see a musical which was Hairspray, now that really made me want to boogie! I was so into it the whole time I wanted to get up and dance with them and then at the very end of the show I remember the cast picking audience members out to have a groove with them on stage, I was straight up there of course. But my absolute favourite thing about this whole trip was seeing So You Think You Can Dance live. This was the most exciting thing for me because I love this programme so much and I’ve been watching it for years. I never thought I’d get to see it live. I got a lot out of this tour. It really opened up my eyes and I realised there’s much more to this industry than I originally thought. I love New Zealand and it’s a lovely place but there definitely aren’t opportunities here like there are in LA, it really is the place to be for a career in this industry. screen-shot-2017-02-09-at-5-36-04-pmThe motivational coaching sessions we had were an extremely helpful touch, sometimes you just need that little reminder that you are good enough and you can do anything you set your mind to. Too much positivity definitely never hurt anyone and I loved the constant inspiration and motivation. Since doing this tour I have been back to LA and studied full time at IDA in the Certificate Program. I just loved it so much the first time I couldn’t wait to get back over there, so I moved to the other side of the world for three months to live my dream. I met some incredible people and made life long connections that I screen-shot-2017-02-09-at-5-36-16-pmcherish very much. I improved and grew so much and not only as a dancer but as a person. I hope to go back as soon as possible and maybe one day even get a working visa. I am so thankful for the opportunity to do this tour, it is definitely worth doing and I’m so beyond happy to have experienced it. screen-shot-2017-02-09-at-5-36-25-pmThank you to Kim for giving me and many other young dancers such an amazing opportunity and unforgettable experience. And thank you for the constant love and support even two years after doing the tour. Isla Campbell

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