A QUICK GUIDE TO THE ’NUTRITION FOR DANCERS’ SECTION
This guide serves as an overview of what to expect from the ’Nutrition for Dancers’ section.
Every year, January is (mis)used to promote fad diets – ranging from completely ineffective to outright harmful, pretending that there is a quick-fix solution or a ’one-size-fits-all’. Many of you may have embarked on such a diet-journey in the past, and have probably felt like a failure a couple of days or weeks into the new program. Not only does that take a toll on your mental health, it also comes with additional negative effects on your physical health.
We do not claim to have the solution to all problems and for everyone – but it is important for you to know that our approach is entirely different to those already available. Why is that? Clinical practice has shown that the best way for the dancers we work with has been to gain the necessary knowledge to understand their bodies, whilst respecting the nutritional needs of performing athletes. Also by including the fundamentals of human biology and exercise physiology, to learn what to eat, when, and why; and to no longer allow anyone to tell them anything that isn’t based on thorough evidence. In a dance world that still struggles with nutrition concepts from a century or two ago, our approach enables the dancers to be the healthiest and strongest dancer they can be, and to know about their needs, allowing them to actually focus on their performance, and to enjoy dancing in a way they probably haven’t before. Our clients come from the most various backgrounds, all over the world, and this gives us a unique insight into the lives of dancers worldwide, from young transition/pre-professional students to full-time professional dancers. We are also very aware that in this century still, in many places, the only nutritional advice students and young dancers encounter during their training comes from teachers with no medical or nutritional background. Whilst that is an entirely different topic, this platform can help the dancers become independent, and no longer impressionable, ultimately enabling them to start their career as healthy individuals.
Our mission: To cut through the noise of misinformation and pseudoscience.
What you won’t find: Information that is not backed by science – think celery juice, juice cleanses in general, anything with detox in the name, bulletproof coffee, or cutting out food (groups) for any other than religious/environmental reasons.
Reading and assessing scientific results is a skill, just as much as dancing is. To talk about science can come across as boring and confusing – however, not when put into the context of your body being the one and only instrument you have to pursue dance. That’s why we are so passionate about our mission! As science acknowledges the uniqueness of every athlete and dancer, you won’t find meal plans or any other forms of set instructions. We’re happy to develop bespoke nutrition plans in 1:1 settings, however, never generalized. The single sections will give you a very good idea of what your daily energy needs are, and for some this will be absolutely sufficient.
A personal message: A reason why it takes so long to study medicine and nutrition is to make sure your treatment is safe. If it were all as easy as celebrities and influencers make it out to be, then both studies would have been abolished long ago. A common problem is the persuasive language that is used to trick you into believing pseudoscience or beliefs. You won’t find this type of language here. It may be a bit daunting in the beginning, but our clinical experience has shown that by learning the facts within the bigger picture of the athletic performing body, everything will fall into place sooner or later, depending on where you started from.
And the feeling of saying goodbye to a client who is eventually able to tell fact from fiction is beyond exciting.
In a stark contrast to the diet/influencer industry, our aim is provide youth the tools you need to become independent – as soon as possible. Too many of you have already spent years in a (nutritional) rut, fueled by a diet culture that isn’t suitable for the general population, and even more so not suitable for dancers.
As everyone starts from a totally different point in their journey, each chapter in the nutrition section spans from the fundamentals to the most advanced stages of current clinical sports nutrition. You may think that you know the basics, but we do recommend that you have a look, because there’s a good chance that within the context of dance, you have never looked at them in the context of athletes and their metabolism! For example, you are aware of simple and complex carbohydrates but you’ve never heard how often per day dancers require a refuel of simple carbohydrates. That’s the everyday struggle for all of us, that almost everything that is communicated in the media, incl. social media, is aimed at the general population which is genuinely sedentary, with little physical activity, overweight, and affected by co-morbidities like diabetes type 2 or various cardiovascular diseases The general population could not be further from dancers; not only regarding their daily schedules, but also regarding their nutritional needs and their response to food. The dance and exercise science, on the other hand, is often hidden behind a paywall, where a single publication can cost between €25-50. Our platform cannot provide you access to the actual publications, but to the summaries and infographics we have developed on the basis of these studies.
We are looking forward to welcoming you as a new member in the ’nutrition for dancers section!
Schools and companies: If you wish us to offer courses and seminars to your students and dancers, or if you wish to access the educational hub as a school/company, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.