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Since 2002, Tim and Tamara Smola have opened the doors to Central City Dance and Fitness Center. Priding itself on being “A Leap Above the Rest,” it has grown quickly to serving more than 1,250 dance students! One of the greatest additions to the studio was ACRO, which the couple introduced three years ago in 2014.
“As a dance choreographer, I’ve always been drawn to pieces that showcase a dancer’s athleticism, insane strength, flexibility and, of course, pristine technique,” Tim said. He knew that this addition to the dance program already in place would produce better dancers and satisfy the growing demand of students who were influenced by popular shows like “So You Think You Can Dance,” “Dance Moms,” “America’s Got Talent,” and “World of Dance.”
“These shows were bringing acrobatics to the forefront of the dance community.”
In turn, Tim brought ACRO to the forefront of his own studio – and he’s glad he did. He and Tamara wanted to offer something unique to other dance studios in Michigan -- something that was community-driven and beneficial for the wide range of students they teach. They did their research and found Acrobatic Arts, which was proven to be comprehensive in teaching with insights from professional acrobats from Cirque Du Soleil, physiotherapists, gymnasts, and other dance and industry geniuses. The decision was made: ACRO was coming to the dance studio.
Initially, the ACRO program was an optional component for dancers, but after seeing the growth and transformation in those who opted in the first year, he knew that it would be revolutionary to infuse the practice into the everyday teaching.
“The difference was astounding!” Tim said. Students and parents alike have recognized growth in the dancers’ strength, flexibility, balance, and agility. Even other studio owners noted the edification. There were very apparent changes especially in moves like the ballet arabesque, the Jazz “C” jump, and the “scorpion”.
Now, there are 100 competitive students and 250 recreational students enrolled in ACRO infused programs at Central City.
Adding ACRO to programs has yielded all around positive results. The aspiring dancers improved with the help of the “latest, most up-to-date training techniques” through a program that offers careful instruction and emphasizes safety. Student growth aside, it has brought in additional revenue to the studio, which they can use directly for studio development to teach more young dancers in the community.
“I can’t say enough about how impressed I am with the program,” Tim said.
Central City currently has six trained instructors through the Acrobatic Arts Syllabus and counting. They believe strongly in the ACRO principles for their own studio: flexibility, strength, balance, limbering and tumbling – things that can transfer to any genre of dance.
Curious about this wonderful world of acro?
Though anyone can start acro dance, it’s ideal for student’s to jump in at a young age. This will properly develop and strengthen the dancer’s body for building up to higher skill levels. It’s never too late! “Acrobatic Arts is brilliantly designed following progressions, [so] one can start the program at any age [and] still notice positive results.”
Let us fill your curiosity! We have tons of studios on three continents. Find an Acrobatic Arts certified studio near you and join us today!