Preparing for Competition Season

Preparing for Competition Season

The 2024 competition season is right around the corner, and it’s important that all performers prepare physically and mentally for a busy season ahead. Whether scholastic or independent, here are a few good steps to help you in your pre-season preparations.

Before Practice Begins

Before each practice begins, consider warming up old skills and revisiting your technique to prepare for the block. One thing coaches always tell their performers is that the more reps you take of your beginner skills, the easier it will make more advanced skills. Prior to attending a rehearsal, check to make sure you have all your instruments, equipment, water, and other necessities ready to go; that way, you have less to worry about during your practices. It also helps to practice outside of rehearsal time. Whether you’re going through those older skills, running a new chunk of your show, or going through a warm-up exercise, practice truly does make perfect, and each time an athlete goes over their skills outside of rehearsal, it puts them one step closer to getting that new skill or getting through each rehearsal with ease. 

Time Management

Many athletes are not only a part of a winter program but also have academics, work, family life, social life, and more to attend to each day. With additional responsibilities comes thinking about how to manage your days best. For some people, it’s best to put aside certain hours of every day to focus on getting some homework done. For others, it’s making sure that they have at least one day of the week where they can place all their focus on their mental health. Whatever it may be, it is important to find balance in your life to ensure that no aspect is being neglected. Another way to create this type of schedule is to start each week off by writing down your to-do list and daily responsibilities in a planner or calendar. This way, it assures you have a quick place to find any information or due dates you may need to have a successful week.

Video Assignments

Some programs have their athletes complete weekly video assignments to help athletes hold one another accountable and to see each team member’s hard work and dedication outside of the rehearsal space. If you’re a part of a program that implements something like this, it is best to come up with a schedule to get those videos completed early. That way, you can receive feedback from your coaches, show you care about bettering yourself as a performer, and give yourself extra time to fix any errors that may have occurred during your first attempt at filming. 

For example, if your coach asks the team to have videos turned in by Thursday night, consider filming your first attempts during the day on Tuesday; that way, you have both Wednesday and Thursday to make any changes you may need prior to submitting your best take for the week. A fun thing you can do to help motivate yourself and your teammates is to get video assignments done together. Practicing with a friend helps to create a more positive environment since everyone involved will be trying to do their best not only for themselves but also to succeed for their teammates.

With these tips, you will help set yourself up for not only a great season but perhaps your best season yet, all while assuring that you find balance outside of rehearsal. Remember, always have fun and think about how much progress you have made throughout your performance career, even if it is only just beginning.