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Dance Space and Flooring Recommendations

Dance Space Recommendations

For barre portion of class:
● Enough clear space for full leg extension front, side, and back (grands battements will tell you!) when standing at the barre.
● Enough clear space for your dancer to do full-body floor stretches.
● A three-foot or longer ballet barre, set to waist level of your dancer, or as close to that as possible. A stair banister, or chair that is firmly anchored, will also do.

For center portion of class:
● Enough clear space so that your dancer can do big "balances" (bal en SAYS) from side to side.
● 6-8 feet of depth so your dancer can move from front to back.

Dance Flooring Recommendations

● Non-slippery, solid surface - Marley dance floor surface (as in Harlequin "Studio" or Rosco "Adagio")
● Sprung wood or resilient wood floor if possible under the marley

One recommended dance flooring approach: "The three-part portable dance floor"

Materials needed:
● Tough carpet padding 1/4" - 1/2" thick
● Masonite pieces, 3/16" thick (1/4" is okay - just tougher to deal with)
● Marley dance floor surface
● Gaffer's tape, 2" wide - 1 roll should do.


1. Lay carpet padding 1/4 - 1/2 inch thick on top of your wood floor or hard surface, cut to your space dimensions, and tape it down at the edges, getting it to lay as flat as possible - (Gaffer's tape is best by far, and can be ordered online - it's around $20+ per roll, but it is strong, lays easily, and comes back up leaving no tape residue. You should be able to order the same color as your marley, usually grey or black).

2. Lay masonite pieces 3/16" (1/4" is okay too, just heavier) thick on top of the carpet padding, custom cut to match your space dimensions, (Home Depot, et al should be able to do the custom cutting from the standard 4' x 8' masonite sheets). You will need to lay the masonite pieces with edges loosely flush (NOT tightly flush). Tape the pieces together where edges meet, using the gaffer's tape.

3. Lay the marley on top of the masonite pieces - stretch it as needed to make it lay flat. Then tape the edges of the marley down using the gaffer's tape.

Now you have your cushier dance floor - very helpful especially for jumping, but safer and more comfortable for all dancing!

> The masonite pieces will tend to ride up on each other over time and get "bumpy" if set too tightly flush.
> Gaffer's tape is cloth tape with a non-slippery surface. Other types of tape like duct tape, etc., have a slippery surface and will leave sticky residue
> You should be able to tear the gaffer's tape pretty easily with a quick twisting pull between pinched fingers.
> The gaffer's lays flat very easily if you don't pull it tight as you lay it.

How to Build a Dance Studio for Under $65

Custom Cut Marley


- Home Depot

Shock Absorbing Pads

- Home Depot

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