Giving dancing bodies the correct fuel to perform is of utmost importance. Many professional dancers stick to specific pre-show routines before they perform, and these all include helping the body to achieve its best by giving it what it needs to do so. It is important for dancers to nourish their bodies, as the body is the dancer’s tool, and there is just one of those! It must be cared for accordingly so it is still fit and healthy. Similarly, athletes will also work hard to look after their bodies and nourish them correctly, in order to gain optimum output for what is required.
Whilst looking after the muscles and bones through diet and specialist care, the body’s overall energy and health must also be considered, both physically and mentally. Moving away from this concept is when dancers and athletes restrict their diets, as the body cannot produce enough energy to perform at its best, be it artistically or technically. The body will then turn to other energy sources within the body, so it is essential to retain the body’s muscle, strength, performance and appearance by consuming the right things. The body needs protein in order to repair itself effectively and prepare for the next day, as well as carbohydrates for energy and minerals and vitamins from vegetables and fruit.
Decisions about diet must be made according to what the body’s performance or health requires, balancing this with promoting general health and wellbeing. Burning out can occur at any stage of dance training or consequent career; the diet is the fuel that dancers invest in the body, as do athletes, and food should be balanced for wellness and enjoyment. When dancers and athletes discover how the body works best – in a combination of rest, wellbeing and diet – it will then become easier to produce the most on the way to its best self.