Dance Science at the U of M
The University of Memphis is offering a new and exciting degree!
A BFA Theatre with a Concentration in Dance Science.
Why study dance science? Through Dance Science, you will be able to combine your love of dance with a foundation of science. This trains a better performer; one more educated about bodies as instruments. The Dance Science degree produces dancers who know not just how to dance but how to dance in a safe way.
The Dance Science curriculum includes courses drawn from the B. S. in Health Studies, concentration in Exercise, Sport and Movement Sciences and the B.F.A. in Theatre, concentration in Dance. The scientific study includes anatomical kinesiology, biomechanics, exercise physiology, nutrition, and psychology. The dance study includes training in dance techniques, improvisation, composition, somatics, and performance.
Dance Scientists are professionals who are employed by dance companies and dance training facilities to devise effective exercise programs, as well as advise dancers regarding best training practices, injury prevention and care. Dance Scientists are better-informed dancers, choreographers and teachers. With additional undergraduate and graduate study, they also become researchers, dance therapists, and physical therapists.
Dancer, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company
(As a student at UofM from 2007-2011, a Dance Science degree did not exist. Countess created her own dance science path by majoring in Health Studies with a concentration in dance.)
"As a result of what I was learning, I was becoming a smarter dancer in the classroom and on the stage. I started feeling so much more aware of my body, and the proper ways to use my body, both inside and out of the studio.
For my Senior Project I did a research study on how to increase flexibility in dancing bodies. I learned about the importance of dynamic stretching and static stretching, and when they were most beneficial for the body to healthily increase flexibility
If a Dance Science degree was available when I was a student I would have chosen it. I am delighted it is now possible: this degree provides an opportunity for dancers to learn about dancing from a physical and scientific scope so dancers can go out into the dance world in whatever field they choose with technical, practical, and scientific knowledge of the dancing body."
Rachael Arnwine B.F.A 2017 currently pursuing an M.A. in Exercise, Sport and Movement Science
"Dance Science is incredibly relevant as it leads to understanding one's own body, injury and injury prevention. I apply this understanding to myself as a dancer and to the students I teach. With this Dance Science degree, the University of Memphis is on the forefront of the new and fast-growing field of dance science and research within the field."