I was introduced to the world of ballroom dancing when I was 9 years old, in my first ‘general class’ at Humphreys Dance Studio. My mother used to dance when she was younger which I’m sure is one of the reasons I ended up there, after having already been through the tap, ballet and jazz experience first. I was immediately engulfed by the energy of the studio, the music, the people and the movement. What initially made me fall in love with dancing was this energy; it was fun! Through my primary school years, this became my ‘thing’; not being a particularly sporty kid, this was what I spent my time doing after school and on Saturdays. The classes were full of other kids my age and I formed friends in that first year that are still close friends of mine now, over 10 years later.
In my teenage years I moved through the technical medal programs as well as moving through the Juvenile, Junior and Adult categories of local competitions. This became more serious as I then started to compete interstate and internationally. In my later teenage years my passion and intensity grew for competition and this was a main focus of my life. Along with the training and competitions, I started when I was 14 years old as a ‘student teacher’ by helping out in studio classes as well as assisting in the schools program; teaching classes in various primary schools all around Perth.
Years on now, I am an accredited DanceSport teacher and coach and I teach part time at the studio, mainly in children’s classes and coaching competitive juvenile couples. This is honestly one of the greatest joys and inspirations in my life, to be able to share my love of dance with children of all different backgrounds, to see them grow and develop. After competing off and on through my early 20s, I am still actively dancing, doing shows and competitions; this is still a huge part of my life.
Dancing to me is first and foremost a creative outlet, a way to express emotions and individuality through movement. The physical movement side of dance keeps my body strong and healthy; simultaneously a healthy lifestyle is a necessity for a competitive dancer. The relationships I have made along the way have shaped me to be the person I am now and I know that these people will always be a part of my life. Growing up in the dance world was ultimately so much fun for me as a child, which has since developed into a lifelong passion. I am so grateful to my mum for bringing me along to that first class; from then I have not looked back. I urge anyone out there, young or old, to go along to your local studio and give it a go. Whatever it is you are after; fun, exercise, socialising, listening to great music, technical learning, just something ‘different’ – I’m sure you will be surprised.