Just recently I've realized how my body tension caused by a desperate attempt to perfect my technique has done the opposite. Thanks to a new book I purchased about a month ago, called Conditioning For Dance, I've learned to relax.
Here's a tip I've been putting quite a bit of thought into lately. Relax the shoulders while dancing. Really, that's it. It seems obvious, and you've probably heard it just as much as I have. That's at least a million times in case you were wondering. A teacher would call me out on it, I tried to fix it, I soon forgot about it, and I slipped back to my bad habit by the next exercise. I'll admit, correcting this problem was never at the top of my list. Compared to speed, agility, extension, clean technique, and multiple turns, what was so bad about tense shoulders anyways? Well, as it turns out, tensing one part of the body locks the coordination, flow, strength, flexibility, and power to do all that. Oh how my eyes were opened. I feel so foolish for not focusing on this correction sooner.
Conditioning For Dance doesn't limit it's assistance to the dancer at creating a conditioning program. It also gives vast information on how the muscles and organs work, giving you a more defined idea of how the movement is supposed to happen. This rids your body of tension spots, because it allows the appropriate muscles to work and frees up the body parts that were previously a hindrance. Some exercises also involve balls to roll over the body in order to find and ease tight spots.