Whether you’re taking your first dance class in the fall or returning for your umpteenth year, chances are that you’ll need to pack up your dance bag before the season starts. While some dancers take a somewhat unorganized approach to packing their class bags, there should be a method to your madness! After all, if you’re just throwing things in at random, chances are that you’ll forget something or end up toting around a 10-pound pouch. Here are some tips that will help make sure you have all the dance bag essentials:
“Stash smelly bags in the freezer to kill off bacteria.”
Cleaning Out Your Bag
If you have an old bag that you’ve been using for a few years, be sure to clean it out before packing it for the season. That old-clothes smell isn’t going to go away unless you take the time to kill the bacteria that are causing it!
Dance Spirit magazine recommended you dump everything out of your bag and toss the trash. Next, turn the bag inside out and vacuum up any crumbs or hairs that are hiding in the crevices. The magazine suggested that you throw the tote in the laundry – if it’s machine-washable. Otherwise, you’ll want to wipe it down thoroughly with disinfecting wipes.
Still smelly? Here’s a pro-tip for you: Stash your bag in the freezer overnight. The extreme cold will kill the odor-causing bacteria.
Shoes, Shoes, Shoes
Are your pointe shoes, ballet slippers and jazz sneakers strewn around your house? That simply won’t do! Your dance bag should be home to all the dance shoes that you use on a regular basis. Take a peek at your class schedule for the upcoming season, and pack your bags with the shoes you’ll need each day. It’s a good idea to stash some extra toe pads in your bag as well. You never know when you’re going to need a new pair.
If you have any shoes that are prone to scuffing or have glitter on them, you may want to store them in carrying bags before putting them in your dance tote. This will keep them in pristine condition for as long as possible.
Extra Attire, Just in Case
Up next is clothing. You’ll need the appropriate outfit for each class, and it’s always a good idea to bring a few extra pieces. Tightly roll up a pair of tights and put them in a sealable bag. This will prevent them from getting snagged on anything while in the bag. You can use this same tactic to bring along an extra shirt or pair of shorts.
You’ll also want to have extra hair elastics, bobby pins and makeup in your dance bag. After all, there’s no such thing as too many hair accessories.
Finally, there are a few small items you’ll probably want to stash in one of your bag’s pockets. Here are a few suggestions:
- Healthy snacks
- A water bottle
- Sticky bandages
- Hand sanitizer
- A phone charger
- Foam rollers or resistance bands.
Once you have all these items carefully stowed away, you should be good to go! Make sure to clean out your bag periodically during the season, otherwise you may end up with gross food wrappers and smelly, dirty clothing. That will only make repacking the tote harder next year.
Peek Into a Dancer’s Bag
Every wonder what’s in the dance bag of your favorite reality TV star? It’s actually a lot of the same stuff! A few of the dancers from the show “Dance Moms” have YouTube videos detailing what they pack into their bags each day. The video below shows what Chloe Lukasiak stashes in her class bag.