Performance Psychology for Dancers

Sanchez, Erin, Collins, David John orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-7601-0454 and Macnamara, Aine orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-8110-6784 (2021) Performance Psychology for Dancers. The Crowood Press. ISBN 9781785007989

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Professional dance careers are both highly rewarding and exceptionally challenging, so success as a dancer requires robust preparation. Performance Psychology for Dancers is an accessible and practical guide to talent development, offering dancers and those around them support to navigate the challenges of training and the psychological strategies that underlie success.

Essential material includes:
Goals: how aspiring dancers and those that support them generate and refine their thinking about what they want to achieve
Talent: an introduction to talent identification and development pathways in dance, and factors talented individuals, parents or teachers can consider to ensure this crucial process delivers what is needed to reach the goals
Early training: the broad range of skills that can be encompassed in early training to support future development and how to select the right training environment
Mental health: supporting dancers' mental health, related to both performance and to life outside of dance
Challenge: common barriers dancers may experience such as perfectionism, passion, fear of failure, identity foreclosure and the evaluative nature of dance education; and how such challenges are an important developmental tool on the young dancer's journey
Thinking like a scientist: guidance on how to make decisions about talent development based on evidence and trustworthy advice

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