Being a dancer in the community on any type of team is difficult — not only do you have practices, competitions, hell weeks/months/years, and “mandatory” mixers but you might also actually have a life and a job or friends. To all of you dancers, KEEP ON DANCIN’ #YOUBETTAWERK #ANDWORK #ASINLIKEYOURJOBANDSTUFF.
See Related Article: How Dance Can Make You A Better College Student
This article, however, is a shout out to all my collegiate dancers. Sure, we’ve written an article on how to balance school and dance that, but there’s so much more to the struggle, AM I RIGHT?
See Article: How To Balance School And Dance
Whether you’re in community college or at a top university, here are 15 struggles that are so real for a collegiate dancer that sometimes, the only degree you can think of working towards is the 45 degree angle you need to hit.
1. You plan your next quarter/semester class schedule based on what day practices are on/what competitions you have that season/when you can fit in naps.
Sometimes, you just have to enroll in that 8am class knowing that you’ll never make it. You depend on watching the podcasts, but let’s face it, that’s just not going to happen.
2. For some reason, quizzes/midterms/finals always land on a competition weekend.
Speaking as a former UC student on the quarter system, The Bridge So Cal always falls between 10th week and finals week for fall quarter, VIBE right during midterms for winter quarter, and Ultimate Brawl during midterms for spring quarter. Sigh.
For some reason, your week right after the competition will be super free of homework, but on the hell-iest of hell weeks, you’ll also have 14 projects, 6 tests, and 20423809238 pages of readings to complete. Life is unfair.
You’ll try to be a good student and bring your homework/study guide to the competition to work on when you have down time. Tbh you’re not going to get any studying done and you realize afterwards that you just carried your books and backpack around for no reason. Sigh.
3. You never get to go to the after parties because you are trying to be a good student, ugh.
Once, I definitely brought my laptop to a mixer and finished a paper while people were drinking around me. I either got an A on that paper or I got … not an A on that paper. Hm.
4. No matter how many roommates you have, you basically live in a single because you’re only in your room at odd hours in the day after class/before practice to take a nap.
Your roommate hasn’t seen your face in a really… really long time. In fact, if your roommate ever has visitors over in your room, he/she probably just points to your bed and a picture of you as a proper introduction.
5. Speaking of naps, you’ve learned that the library is not just for studying.
Sleeping in public areas on campus is an art, and you are Vincent Van Gogh to sleep and dream about a “Starry Night.”
6A. “Oh so you’re a dance major then?”
Newsflash: I can dance for a collegiate team and have other interests for my future.
6B. “If you’re a dance major, why do you have to dance even more? Isn’t that just too much dancing?”
Newsflash: There’s no such thing… as too much dancing.
7. Your practice clothes and the clothes you wear to class become the same thing.
Regardless of gender, leggings are somehow a staple item to your every day attire. Pair those bad boys with a competition shirt and you’re good to go.
8. In Lot 4, concrete jungle where knees get scraaatched up, there’s nothing you can do~
If you are working on flooreo, even with long pants and a hoodie, it’s definitely less than comfortable to practice on. Not to mention the terrible back aches that you can get while trying to take a nap on the comfortable, cold, hard floor during breaks or sectionals you’re not a part of. Yay.
9. No mirrors? No problems!
LOL JK SO MANY PROBLEMS.
To all the dance teams, collegiate or not, who get studio space and mirrors, YOU ARE SO LUCKY. Without mirrors, cleaning involves a lot more than just soap and water.
You probably have found yourself practicing in the distorted reflection of a car door before casting to kind of get an idea of what you look like.
You might have a sectional at 11pm on the side of a building on campus because it has glass doors and windows for you to use.
You may think your arm is at the same angle as everyone else’s, but it’s most likely not.
You may think you and your opposite are splitting center evenly and equidistant off of the center’s shoulders, but you’re not.
You may think your formations are even, but when you watch the video, stage left is awfully cramped while stage right is super spread out. Sigh.
***TIP: Take a video of a run through at the end of practice and upload it to the team, so you guys can … reflect and look for cleaning!***
10. The weather in the parking lot is 200% never the weather on normal ground level.
Whether (lol heh) it is sunny outside or raining super hard, depending on what level of the parking lot you’re practicing in / if the parking lot is indoor or outdoor, you’ll honestly never be prepared for how hot or how cold practice will be.
Plus, if you have a long practice, you may start out in 80 degree weather around 7pm but it’ll quickly turn to -40 degrees by midnight. Isn’t nature cool?
11. The nearest bathroom is like 5 miles away. After 11pm, the nearest bathroom is a bush.
The nearest bathroom might be in the nearest building to wherever you’re practicing, but after 11pm or 12am, the building is probably closed. Bring toilet paper.
12. Parking enforcement tries to, like, actually enforce parking. They’re the worst.
Parking Enforcement Person, like I get it, we don’t have permits. But can’t you see we’re just trying to practice here? Clearly we are not made of money — we’re practicing… in a parking lot. TRY AND SYMPATHIZE. Sigh.
When you see the parking enforcement truck drive by, practice is on hold as you see your teammates bolt to their cars as if they were in the Hunger Games. Let the parking enforcement odds forever be in your favor.
13. If your team’s auditions aren’t until mid-October and they plan on doing Maxt Out or Prelude NorCal,
LOL AFTER YOU MAKE THE TEAM, YOUR LEADERSHIP SENDS OUT AN EMAIL LIKE:
Hey guys! Welcome to the team! We’re so happy to have you join our family! We are a fun and easy going collegiate team that practices twice a week, unless we’re preparing for a competition, which we are! The competition is in less than one month, so we’ll be having practice 8 days a week to create a brand new set with a brand new team! Yay bonding!
hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha good luck.
14. Competition fee$ vs. Textbook$
…we all know that you’ll find a way to front the competition fees and you just cross your fingers that you’ll find the textbook online #JSTOR #SCRIBD
Dancing for a collegiate team while being a full time student is hard work, but it’s not impossible. We have faith that you’ll graduate at the top of your class and have a job right out of college, AS WELL AS GET BLOCKED CENTER FOR CLOSER HAAY~
Just remember, C’s get degrees, and you can’t spell “dance” without a “C” (you can’t spell it without a “D” or an “A” though either, hmm) #shootforatleastaverage..
What are some extra collegiate dancer problems that you think deserve to be on this list? Leave a comment to share with us!
If one of your student / dancer problems is not having enough time to take class, sign up for a free STEEZY Studio account! You can train in your dorm room or at the library, before your 8 am or during an all-nighter study break.