Using Mirrors

Cyndy solo

Several teachers have asked about how we feel about using mirrors. Do they help or hinder classes? One teacher was told she should cover the mirror in the room.

In general we don’t use the mirrors but we don’t cover them either. We simply ignore them. Once in a while, we do use them as a learning tool (it makes it easier, at times, to teach in front of a mirror so that people can see the teacher’s back and front sides) but we don’t generally talk about the mirror or orient to it. I don’t see any reason to cover it though–that sends a strange signal in its own way, unless you’re hosting a class in Gaga, which requires that the mirrors be closed. Better, I think, to have the studio look the same way it does for other dancers and to integrate use of the mirror as a very limited, once-in-a-while tool.

As a teacher, I use the mirror quite a bit for safety–as a way of seeing people from behind to gauge how stable they are, and to perhaps pick up on something that’s happening in the room (or about to happen) that might create a complication or safety issue.