Sarah Lane and Herman Cornejo in Alexei Ratmansky's The Sleeping Beauty. Photo by Rosalie O'Connor.

Our Best Tips: Stellar Sleep

No matter how many times you think you've heard it all, new information about the importance of sleep is coming out constantly. From how many winks you get to the quality of your shut-eye, sleep has a big impact on helping you dance your best.

  1. Watch your social media use. One study found that checking your accounts repeatedly throughout the day could be disruptive to sleep.
  1. Give yourself time to wind down. Calming activities, like reading a book, are suggested to help you relax during the hour or so before bed.
  1. When you go to bed matters. People who tend to worry may benefit from turning in earlier, one study found. Going to bed later, along with sleeping for shorter periods, has been linked to more negative thoughts during the day.
  1. Perfect the art of napping. For best results, the length of daytime naps depends on what you're planning on doing when you wake up, whether it's taking technique class or learning a new work. Plus, one study found that napping could help you better tolerate frustration.
  1. Make your bedroom a relaxing place. Research shows that making your bed and keeping it clean can help you get a better night's sleep—simply because you'll be more comfortable.

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How Can I Stay Motivated While Training at Home?

Ethan Ahuero was having a good year: he was in his first season dancing with Kansas City Ballet II and had been presented with the opportunity to choreograph on the second company. "The day before we shut down I had a rehearsal, and I was so happy," Ahuero says. "The piece was coming together and this was the first time I felt really proud of my creative process."

Suddenly, the coronavirus pandemic brought everything to a halt. With the company's season cut short and the studios closed, Ahuero found himself attempting to continue dancing from home, with his choreography project put on hold. Like many other dancers around the world, Ahuero is dealing with disappointment while struggling to stay motivated.

Keeping up with daily ballet classes may feel difficult right now; inspiration can seem hard to come by when you're following along on Zoom and short on space at home. Below are a few simple tips for finding new ways to stay motivated.

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Courtesy Goh Academy

Pro-Pro Priorities: The Top Skills to Focus on During Your Final Training Years

As told to Rachel Caldwell

Finding the right pre-professional training program can be daunting. Then once you're there, what should you focus on in order to succeed? To shine some light on the topic, we talked to five leading teachers and directors who have seen scores of students move on to flourishing ballet careers. Here's what they suggested for young dancers on the pre-professional track.

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Tulsa Ballet in Ma Cong's Tchaikovsky: The Man Behind the Music. Kate Luber Photography, Courtesy Tulsa Ballet.

Updated: Mark Your Calendars for These Online Ballet Performances

Updated on 5/21/2020

Since COVID-19 has forced ballet companies around the world to cancel performances—and even the remainder of their seasons—many are keeping their audiences engaged by streaming or posting pre-recorded performances onto their websites or social media channels. To help keep you inspired during these challenging times, we've put together a list of upcoming streaming events and digital performances.

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