Stretching before jazz dance class is extremely important because in order to all of the jazz dance moves, you are going to need to ensure that you are flexible enough to reach the positions. If you do not take the time to stretch, there's a chance that you might hurt yourself. Here are some simple stretching exercises that you can follow in order to make sure that your body is flexible enough to perform the moves.
1. Standing Stretch
Stand in second position, with your legs spread far enough apart so that you have a solid surface from which to perform your moves. Next, bend your body towards your right leg. Try to touch it if possible. Drape your left arm down your leg and allow it to rest so that your left wrist hovers near your right ankle. Place your right hand on your hip and twist slightly to the right so that you are able to get a good stretch in the center of your chest. Hold this position for thirty seconds, allowing each breath to draw your upper body nearer to your right leg.
After thirty seconds, use your inhale to push yourself back into a standing position. Take a full breath here. On the exhale, fall back and stretch on the left leg. Hold this pose for thirty seconds as well.
2. Center Stretch
Next, while you are still in second position, perform a forwards bend on an exhale. Hold this position by holding your ankles in your hands or, if you are able to stretch far enough forwards, touch the ground. Hold this pose for thirty seconds. Allow your head to droop forwards but try not to put any additional pressure on your neck.
3. Roll Up
From the center stretch, take one last breath. On the next inhale, start to roll yourself up, vertebrae by vertebrae. Your head should be the last part of your body to make itself fully upright. This will allow you to tighten and then relax your spine so that you know that you are loose enough to perform the jazz dance moves. Hold yourself in a standing second position for thirty seconds, allowing yourself to take several full, deep breaths.
4. Side Stretches
Finally, stretch out your sides by placing your left hand on your hip. Bend over your left hip so that your right side is as extended as possible. Raise your right arm above your head and allow the curve of the right side of your body to be continued in that right arm. Return to center and do the same with your left side. Each time, hold for thirty seconds.
For more information, talk to a jazz dance instructor from a location like Debbie's Dance Studio.