Dancewear for the Zumba Party


The Zumba craze has well and truly taken hold of the fitness and dance world, shaking up a storm and providing fun and fabulous calorie-burning workouts as a mix of dance and aerobic routines. Zumba is a dance fitness program created by Colombian dancer and choreographer Alberto “Beto” Perez during the 1990s. This music is the key ingredient to Zumba classes, where the score, created with specific beats and tempo changes, transforms the workout from one toning, strengthening or cardio move to another, targeting every major muscle group in the body. With the energy of the Latin beat, and the structured workout Zumba classes give you the ultimate non-workout exercise regime.

The next step on the Zumba ladder is working out what is best to wear for a class. Zumba is a high performance activity and it demands high performance clothing, and the dancewear industry has done a huge amount of researching and developing fabrics that stretch and breathe. Suitable for both men and women partakers in Zumba are jazz pants or leggings and close fitting dance tops which accentuate movement and allow teachers to see the dancers’ movements clearly, available in a huge array of colours and styles. Capezio dance tops in particular provide a clean cut look, and their jazz pants are also available in a drawstring design.

Bloch dance trainers and sneakers are also great options for Zumba classes, light, breathable, and designed for high impact dance. The trainers come in a great range of colours, and leather and canvas designs with features that make them ideal for the activity. They provide excellent grip, a ‘spin-spot’, split soles, are shock absorbing and lightweight, with many designs suitable for the whole class. Get your own and join the party!

Pointe Shoe Accessories

Pointe Shoe Accessories

For a ballerina, aspiring or prima, to maintain the theatrical illusion and aesthetic line of grace during performance requires a combination of skills and qualities. Many non-dance audience members, and dance fans alike, are caught in this dynamic illusion of the moving body. Within this is the creation of a specific aura of beauty as the dancer moves seamlessly from one movement to the next with engaging expression and undeniable talent.

The finishing touch on the end of the beautifully extended leg is usually a pink pointe shoe, especially when classical repertoire is being performed. Naturally, audiences are mainly receptive to the “finished” and aesthetic product of ballet rather than the process, be that a tutu or a costume of a leotard and dance skirt, performance tights or the tiara which is quite literally the cherry on top of the cake. Unless the audience is made up of experienced and professional dancers, they will not consider the uncomfortable feelings or even pain that are being brought on by wearing pointe shoes, often the epitome of perfection.

Many dancers engage the use of “toe protectors” in order to prevent blisters and sores emerging on their feet. Popular choices are Bunheads’ Ouch Pouches, and various other products such as toe tape, Happy Toes gel pads and lamb’s wool. Whatever your pointe shoe preference, Dance Direct is the dancewear specialist that offers a wide variety of products to suit the Principal Artists down to those anticipating their first lessons en pointe. Whilst Bunheads appear to be the most popular brand of pointe shoe accessories, there is much on offer to ensure the balletic beauty of performance is maintained.



Cosmetics by The Royal Ballet

Royal Ballet Cosmetics

With dance in the twenty-first century collaborating left,right and centre with artists, musicians and film-makers, the most recent partnering seen in the dance sector is that of The Royal Ballet and a new brand of cosmetics, developed with the Company and consequently used by them. Gone, it seems, are the days when blisters and sore toes were danced on repeatedly, as today the dance industry is developing increasingly unique ranges of care products for sore feet… from pointe shoes, to muscle balm for tap shoe enthusiasts.

The new Royal Ballet body care range, sold by Dance Direct, has been developed as a high performance collection in order to meet the needs of hard working bodies. Alongside leotards and microfiber dance tights, the new specifically designed body care range includes body conditioner moisturiser which works to improve the fitness, tone and elasticity of the skin, also helping to combat cellulite. Additional products in the range are a cooling muscle gel which is said to have excellent moisturising and anti-microbial properties, and an intensive hand and foot cream, which has a high concentration of moisturiser to help strengthen cuticles and nails,which can often take a bruising from excessive work in pointe shoes. With so much else to worry about as a dancer, this new body care range seems set to cover all your skin and ffoott concerns for the rest of your dancing career!

The latest advancement in “dancewear” has now hit the market, and looks set to take the dance world by storm, following in the footsteps of the leotard ranges and cover-ups verging on the fashion runways of mainstream retail, and vice versa.

Dance Accessories For Injury Prevention

Injury Prevention For Dancers

To enhance your lines, for a stronger body and an improved performance we have a range of essential dance accessories for the dancer eager to excel. However, it is vitally important to warm up properly to look after your body correctly, as it is the instrument with which to fulfil your dance desires… and if it is not cared for, it can be easily damaged.

Kitting yourself out in the latest dancewear, such as redesigned foot thongs and innovative leotards will not protect your body from the rigours of dance. Dancers wearing the newest jazz trainers and cover-ups must work hard to prolong their dance training and career using the right techniques and methods for their own body.

For example, the Original Deuserband is a classic, physio-therapeutical training band which is incredibly strong, working to flex muscles and increase fitness, strength and flexibility. Specifically for increased leg flexibility, the Deuserband is used worldwide by professional dancers as an aid to their training.

Latex resistance bands, such as those designed by Bunheads, are also used by dancers of all levels to target specific areas of the body that require strengthening. They are particularly useful for young dancers who are preparing for pointe work, and for exercise aiding injury recovery, displaying their ultimate versatility and usefulness.

An additional product which aids strength, and is also extremely useful for dancers preparing to wear pointe shoes is the Wobbleboard. It is also recommended by physiotherapists, working to strengthen the ankles to prevent injury.

Another versatile product is the Theraball, which targets all the major muscle groups for a full body workout, whilst aiding stretching and strengthening. Exercise balls of all sizes are renowned for their revolutionary design and purpose, often used for strengthening the core and upper body. In this essence, the Theraball is vital to maintain and dancing body’s dynamics and prolong dance lives.

Image courtesy of adria.richards at Flickr.