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What's In Her (Dance) Bag?

A dancer's bag is full of helpful resources to help them get through the day as comfortably as possible, whether at the studio, in the theater, or anywhere in between! We can be in rehearsals for 6-10 hours at a time, so it's important to be prepared!

Our artistic director, Lea Fosbenner (also a choreographer and company dancer), goes through her dance bag to demystify the assortment of goodies that she carries around, some of which may be unfamiliar territory to non-dancers - trash bag pants, anyone?

According to Lea:

Somehow my dance bag seems to keep getting bigger and bigger every season. I’m a planner and organizer, so I like to make sure I’m prepared for anything that myself or other dancers in the company would need! They don’t call me a dance mom for nothing ☺

The Essentials

  • Water: Hydration is KEY on long rehearsal days. I will probably go through three or four of these water bottles throughout the day. I sometimes also add some lemon to my water for some extra taste!

  • Deodorant: Dancers are athletes. Our rehearsals are pretty intense so making sure you stay smelling nice can ensure you don’t scare away any of your dance friends.

  • Hand sanitizer: All I can say are dance floors can get pretty dirty... and we're no strangers to floor work! So, I always like to make sure I have some on-"hand" during rehearsal season!


  • Back brace: This is probably my favorite item in my dance bag that I can’t live without. After having multiple back injuries this little brace has helped keep my back warm and stable during long hours. I usually have this on for about fifteen minutes before rehearsal starts.

  • Trash bag pants: These look like actual black trash bags and seem to confuse non-dancers, but they are super fun and help you to get warm super-fast!

  • Leg warmers: Katie (EDT Founding Executive Director) gave me these fun and sparkly leg warmers as a Christmas gift in one of our first years as a company. These are sentimental, but most importantly, they get the job done on keeping my muscles warm in-between rehearsals!

  • Foot warmers: These foot warmers are over ten years old and they are still a staple in my dance bag. I don’t go to a rehearsal or the theater without them. Keeping warm in-between rehearsals is important, especially a dancer’s most important.

Joint & Muscle Wellness

  • Thera band: Thera bands can be used for many different exercises from ankle stability to working those inner and outer thighs. They help build and maintain strength.

  • Icy hot: Icy Hot is my best friend. It’s always good to keep on hand to help those ore muscles the day after a performance or rehearsal. I don’t even want to know how many of these I have gone through!

  • Roller: Although this may look like a torture device, it’s really not! This little guy helps roll out sore muscles before and during rehearsal.


  • Little bag: I keep bobby pins, safety pins, perfume, and hair ties in this little bag of tricks.

  • Chapstick: You can never too many chap sticks, can you?

For Down-Time

  • Gum: For before or after rehearsal only! All dancers know this universal rule: NO chewing gum while in the studio dancing!

  • Notebook & book: I am someone who likes to take handwritten notes. I don’t think I could function one rehearsal day without this notebook. I use this for choreography, meeting notes, rehearsal notes, and new ideas, etc. I also like to bring a book I’m reading to rehearsal, in case I find myself with some free time, I can give my mind a break from choreography.

  • Air pods: I’m always listening to music. These are great because they allow me to move freely with no wires. Listening to music to prepare for rehearsal and for a show is something that is ritual for me.

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