Hip Hop Dance Lessons

Finding a hip hop dance class for kids

When you think of children's dance lessons, you probably envision ballet, or maybe jazz. But there are far more options than just these traditional genres. Kids today can participate in modern and contemporary dance, ballroom dancing, and even hip hop dance lessons.

Like ballet and other traditional dance styles, hip hop encourages children to be active and helps improve their coordination, flexibility, balance and posture. It also makes them more aware of their bodies, which in turn leads to better food choices and a healthier body weight. Finally, hip hop, like other dances, encourages creative expression and provides a sort of musical education, exposing children to rhythms and musical genres they otherwise might never hear.

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If your child would like to learn hip hop dance, check your local listings for classes near you.

What to Look for in a Hip Hop Dance Class

Unlike jazz, tap, or ballet lessons, which are generally offered only through traditional dance studios, hip hop dance lessons can be found at gyms, recreational centres, YMCAs and similar organizations, and even continuing education programs at colleges and universities.

Before enrolling your child in a class, make sure that he or she will be with others of similar age and skill level. Or, consider registering both of you and enjoying the experience together. Also ask about a trial class or a trial period that will allow you to try it out before you commit the time and money to regular classes.

What to Look for in a Hip Hop Dance Teacher

Even though there is no formal certification requirements for dance teachers, many teachers in traditional genres have years of experience competing and performing in their chosen styles. However, hip hop is a relatively new style of dance -- at least in the mainstream -- so teachers of this style may not always have the extensive experience or credentials of, for example, ballet teachers.

That being said, the most important thing at the beginning stages is really passion, patience, and enthusiasm (though they need to have some expertise in hip hop dance moves, too, of course). An upbeat personality is especially important to hip hop, which requires a lot of energy. Finally, a hip hop dance teacher should be able to break down the moves and explain them in simple terms so that children can understand and follow without getting frustrated. After all, the goal of hip hop dance lessons for kids is, or at least should be, fun!