Yoga as Cross Training for Dancers

with Louisville Ballet Dancer/Yogi Leigh Anne Albrechta


Yoga is associated with flexibility much more so than strength. Therefore, it’s easy for dancers to write it off as something they could too easily master or something that might not be super beneficial to their dance goals.

When you look at yoga from an insider’s perspective, it’s much more about the components of control and strength to support your flexibility. As a dancer, this could be an essential support for your dancing.

I sat down with Leigh Anne Albrechta in The Whole Dancer Facebook Group to discuss the benefits of this practice for dancers. Leigh Anne dances with the Louisville Ballet and has been teaching and practicing yoga for many years. In our chat, she pinpoints the ways this form of cross – training can support you not just in flexibility but also in the building of your strength in dance. Check out our chat here:

Beyond the physical benefits, it might provide dancers with significant psychological and emotional benefits as well. My personal experience in yoga provided some of the first times I was appreciating my bodies abilities beyond how it looked. I was able to turn inward and feel my strength without worrying about creating a perfect shape. It took lots of trial and error and exploration to find classes and instructors I enjoyed but the journey was well worth it.

For many dancers, the mental calm that yoga might provide could be a missing component in not just your dancing but your life. It might allow you to relax into yourself and find greater physical awareness than you might gain from dance alone. The benefits are many.

Have you tried yoga yourself? What was your experience? Share in the comments!! I’d love to hear from you.

Yoga as Cross Training for Dancers

Jess Spinner

Jess is a former professional ballet dancer turned Holistic Health, Nutrition, and Lifestyle Coach for high level dancers. She founded The Whole Dancer in 2015 after identifying a greater need for balance, wellness and support in the dance world. Since The Whole Dancer was founded, Jess has worked with 100's of dancers worldwide at top companies and schools. She has been featured in or written for Dance Magazine, Dance Teacher Magazine, Pointe Magazine, and Dance Spirit Magazine.

One thought on “Yoga as Cross Training for Dancers

  • July 14, 2018 at 9:33 pm

    I’m so happy you featured this! Yoga has been my saving grace beyond ballet… I could go on and on about how it has re-shaped my relationship with my mind/body/spirit, being in a studio and in front of a mirror, etc… What a portable gift it is! 🙂 #namaste sweet Jessica!


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