Dance Nutrition

Eating for the Show – Do I need to eat differently for the stage?


Coming towards the end of the year is a busy time for dancers.

Training increases as more rehearsals are squeezed in for the upcoming shows.

And on the performance days, everything goes so quickly that you can get lost on what to eat. Although adrenalin may mask the hunger during the show it definitely strikes you at the end of the day when things are done.

Planning your food and eating schedule can be advantageous to your health and performance, especially if you know you’re a sporadic eater during busy seasons.


So let’s see what we can do to optimise your performance day.
(If you haven’t already, have a read of the posts here and here on the basics for Dance Nutrition and here for meal planning)



The Top 3 Tips on eating on Performance days:

Know your foods.

Performance day isn’t the best time to try something new regardless of how fancy or delicious it may sound.

Keep to your familiar foods to avoid any stomach upset.

Go easy on fibre.

Fibre is important: it keeps you regular and helps keep blood sugar and cholesterol levels optimum.

But it can be a bit too much of a work for the body when it has several hours of dancing to endure also.

Small-and-frequent is better than large-in-one-go.

Larger meals will need more time for digestion.

To allow for quick fueling and refuelling, try and breakdown the large meals to smaller portions and have them more frequently.


And… what would this all look like in real foods?

Breakfast ideas:

Muesli with yoghurt; Eggs on toast; Cereal and milk;

Lunch ideas:

Pasta salad; Sushi rolls; Sandwich

Ideas for snacks throughout the day:

PB and jam sandwich – have them pre-cut into one- or two-bite size pieces.


Trail mix

Fruit or fruit salad

Dinner ideas:

A substantial meal to refuel your body after a hard work. Say, chicken and rice with veggies; noodle or pasta; fish/steak with salad; omelette; curry; soup or a roast.

And have a quick think:

am I getting enough protein to repair muscles? (can often be lacking with noodles / pasta)

am I getting enough carbohydrate to refuel my body? (can often be lacking with omelette or fish/steak with salad)




When you’re on stage you want to feel as comfortable as possible without tummy troubles and energised enough to keep you running till the end of the show.

Just like doing your warm-ups and conditioning work to perfect your skills, invest some time aside to plan your eating too 🙂




Fumi x


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