SMART Goals for Dance in 2015

January 22, 2015 by

Dream Big & Dance Better

There’s nothing like a new year to help us reassess ourselves and create new goals for the months to come. As dancers there is always room for us to grow, so why not use the start of 2015 to check in, think about where you are, and where you want to go? The creative outlets, performance opportunities, and technique challenges are truly endless!   It’s time to dream big and dance better.


Goal setters everywhere have used the acronym S.M.A.R.T. with much success. It’s proved to be an effective tool for ambition seekers everywhere, and can easily be applied to a dancer’s determinations.

Specific: There’s a big difference between saying, “I want to be a better dancer” and “I want to clearly lead follows I don’t already know through salsa underarm turns.” Since dance can be very subjective, it’s challenging to make goals that are objective. Do your best to define your dance goals with specific actions so that they are clearer to achieve and there’s a definitive moment when you know they’ve been accomplished. Turn your big dream intentions into specific goals.

Measureable: Making measurable goals will make them more specific, and essentially more effective. Create your goals so that they can answer the questions “How much?” or “How many?” For example, instead of your goal being to become better at Latin motion, your goal could be to practice your Latin motion technique by completing 50 front-and-back basics and 50 side-to-side basics 6 days a week.

Action-Based: Dance is all about movement after all! When it comes to putting action in your goals, think about ideas that literally get you moving. A specific action-based goal would be to attend a private lesson with a Bella Ballroom dance instructor two times a week for a month. This goal will literally get you out the door and dancing! Remember that it’s the action that will create the outcome.

Realistic: While it’s normal to want to wake up one day and fly like Mikhail Baryshnikov, moonwalk like Michael Jackson, and float across the dance floor like Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire, it’s probably not a realistic goal if you’ve never danced a day in your life. Make your goal possible to achieve and one that you are willing to work towards and you will!

Time-Bound: Give your goals a deadline. A set time frame will help you stay on track and give you a sense or urgency to get things done! Events can act as great time binders. Wedding coming up? Christmas party around the corner? Maybe even a dance showcase. Use these events as set dates to complete your goals by.

Have fun!

Goals don’t always have to be about working hard. What are some dance goals you’d look forward to not only accomplishing, but also doing? Here are some fun suggestions!

Perform for an audience! Family and friends count! Don’t have a backstage? Backyards and living rooms count will do. Dancing in front of people has a completely different feeling than dancing by yourself. Plus, why not show off a little?

Make a music video Ever since MTV was born, I’ve been obsessed with the idea of starring in a music dance video. With all the technology we have today, even phones can act as video cameras. Pick a song, invite some friends, get creative and start shooting!

Take a dance class in a style you’ve never tried It’s good for us to embrace the awkward and get out of our comfort zone. I find that cross training is a great way to get better at the dances you already work in as well as provides diversity to what you already know. Who knows? You might find a whole new dance style that you’ll become addicted to.

Teach someone a dance move Teaching someone else a dance move will make you know it that much more. Doing a move is very different than explaining it to someone else. Find a friend and make a dance move exchange!

Have a dance movie night With so many dance movies, why not bust out the popcorn, get cozy, and become inspired? Dance movies are a great way to see new styles and amazing choreographies.   Youtube is another great resource to spend countless hours watching what the rest of the world is creating with their dance practice.

Hope you enjoyed these steps to create SMART goals for dance!

Article by Orange County, CA top dance teacher, Ziva.