The dance team gears up for competition

Edward RudmanContributor

Southern has a plethora of clubs and organizations on campus, some of which, like the dance team, are athletic clubs or teams.

The dance team has been around on campus since 2005 and has become a part of the club sports culture at Southern. They perform at every home game for football and basketball, and will perform for any team that invites them, according to Hannah Bowen, junior social work major and team captain.

“We practice every Monday and Wednesday from 6:30 p.m. to, at least, 8:30 p.m. and 9 a.m. to noon on Sundays,” said Bowen, “We mostly get ready for all the home games we participate in and we also do Midnight Madness, the pep rally, and homecoming.”

Bowen said they have also danced for volleyball games and other events and are more than happy to but it is just a matter of being invited.

Not only does the team dance for Southern events and games, but they also compete in two to three competitions per year, which head coach Madison Correia, seemed to be excited about.

“We have choreography, for the competitions, coming soon from the Universal Dance Association,” said Correia, “who will send us a choreographer that we pay for to teach us a dance that fits within the rules of the competitions.”

This is Correia’s first year as the head coach for the dance team, however, this is not uncharted waters for her. She was a member of the dance team for five years and captain of the team, and she says that her experience there has helped shape the kind of coach she is.

“Dance has been a part of my life since I was two years old and it’s interesting being on the other side of things now,” said Correia. “I took what I liked and disliked from the coaching I received when I was dancing and I apply it here.”

One thing Correia stresses above all else is the importance of academics. The dance team recorded the highest GPA of all club sports last year, posting an average of 3.1. The team is proud of this and for this year, Correia set a goal for all members to strive for a 3.0 or higher.

Two years ago, the team saw their numbers dwindled down to a mere six members, but have made a big turn around since then. With eight returning members and eight new ones, the roster is up to 16 and filled with motivated dancers,
according to Correia.

One thing Bowen made sure to talk about was how hard the team works and that the popular thought that dancing is relatively easy is untrue.

“For practice, the first hour is strictly conditioning and working on our stamina, a vital part of what we do. We run, do push-ups, jumping jacks to work on our stamina and strength,” said Bowen.

New member to the team, Alyssa Kreuzer, Freshman Exploratory major, said, “The team was so inviting and I never felt intimidated. It made the transition into college easier because I felt welcome and made new friends quickly.”

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