National Dance Day falls on July 30 To all of our readers engaged in current, former, or future careers as dancers, we celebrate you! A dancer's life can be enriching and heart-wrenchingly difficult, sometimes all on the same day. Dancers are artists and athletes at the same time. They give everything to their profession, including their physical health. A career in dance demands investment on every level, and some of these investments result in injuries due to accidents or overworked muscles and joints. Even if dancers are gifted, trained, and lucky enough to reach the highest levels of the profession without a single injury, they still typically retire much earlier than those who pursue less physical careers.
So what happens next? No matter where your dance career takes you, and no matter what form of performance you pursue (modern dance, ballet, theater, dancing for NFL or NBA, and more), you'll eventually need to contemplate your next steps. If you're approaching this stage, consider these potential career moves.
Many former dancers build second careers as choreographers or artistic directors for dance companies. This career may require high levels of self-direction; many choreographers are funded by grants, which you may have to seek out your own if you pursue this path. But your dance education and performance background will set you apart from others in the field. Furthermore, you probably have more experience choreographing than you realize.
Consider working as a dance teacher for an established school (or start your own with the help of business partners). If you'd like to train aspiring adult professionals, you may need the credentials of a reputable school to boost your profile. But if you'd like to teach very young children, you can start reaching out to your target clients and students directly. (Bonus: The kids would adore National Dance Day!)
Dance company or theater administrator
Consider working in an administrative (or leadership) capacity for a theater or dance company. These organizations often prefer to work with former dancers who understand the realities of a performance-focused lifestyle.
If you've experienced an injury or worked with a physical therapist, you know how valuable skilled care can be. Consider going back to school for an associate or bachelor's degree. You can work to get certified as a dance medicine specialist or sports-focused physical therapist. You can even pursue a full medical degree. That's a benefit of an early career change; you have more time to pursue an extensive education.
Yoga or pilates instructor
Yoga instructors are in demand. Your dance background provides you with an in-depth understanding of physical balance, motion, stillness, flexibility, and breathing. A career as a yoga or pilates instructor may be well within your reach, and may open the door to a rewarding second chapter. And yes, similar to National Dance Day there is an International Yoga Day.
No matter where your next career may take you, we can help you get there. Explore MyPerfectResume for job openings, job search guidance, and resume tips.