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Train safely at home – the Dancing Times, May 2020
28 April 2020
Dancers are used to a tight schedule of training and rehearsals to keep their bodies in peak condition. They train in fully equipped studios where flooring, mirrors, barres, music and even air temperature have all been considered with the utmost care, and they are normally surrounded by fellow dancers too. However, since the Covid-19 lockdown dancers around the world have suddenly had to adjust to undertaking daily dance training within a space in their own home. As more companies and schools facilitate classes online, dancers are coming to terms with new technologies to keep up with their training, and many are reaching out and sharing these classes with their audiences.
You don’t require lots of equipment in order to train efficiently, but one major piece often overlooked is the floor on which dancers are training. Harlequin works with dance scientists, biomechanic experts and dancers themselves to produce the best possible flooring for dance; one that safeguards dancers from slips and falls, and helps protect against longer-term stress injuries. The injuries that can occur when practising on an unsuitable floor include sprained ankles and hamstrings, knee and tendon issues and even bone fractures from bad falls.
The need to maintain similar levels of safety when dancing from home is paramount. Harlequin is the global leader in advanced technology floors and studio equipment for the performing arts, chosen by the world’s most prestigious dance and performing arts companies, theatres, venues, schools, production companies and global events. Harlequin wants to make sure both professional and amateur dancers are able to train on the same world-class floors at home as they do when they are in the studio or on stage.
The Harlequin Home Studio range offers the renowned Harlequin vinyl dance floors and equipment in new portable sizes, ideal for your home. Harlequin Cascade vinyl practice mats are available in 2 sizes, 1 metre x 1 metre and a large (NEW) 2 metre x 1 metre mat. Both come with a handy bag for storage and portability.
In addition, the Harlequin Tap and Turn board, a 1 metre x 1 metre board with birch plywood one side and Harlequin Reversible vinyl the other is ideal for both tap and ballet.
A range of free-standing ballet barres are available in three sizes – small, medium and large.
For those needing a sprung dance floor surface, Harlequin’s Home Studio kits contain Harlequin Liberty panels with a Harlequin Cascade or Harlequin Reversible vinyl top surface. These are available in three sizes; 2 metre x 1 metre, 2 metre x 2 metre and 2 metre x 3 metre.
Lauren Cuthbertson, principal dancer with The Royal Ballet, is using the Harlequin medium ballet barre and a 2 metre x 1 metre Harlequin Practice Mat at her home. She says: “Practising at home is now so much easier since receiving my Harlequin Ballet Barre and Practice Mat. Having a Harlequin Cascade mat to train on makes a real difference as it is the same floor we are used to performing on at The Royal Opera House and I can be confident that it will support me”
Tamara Rojo, Artistic Director for the English National Ballet adds:
“The wellbeing of our dancers is of the upmost importance for all at English National Ballet, and being able to provide them with the same Harlequin floors they usually train and perform on, while they work in their own homes, has been a huge relief. I am really happy we were able to support them in this way thanks to the commitment and professionalism of the team at Harlequin, which are shared qualities that has made them perfect partners for many years”