We have received enquiries from parents in the UK, regarding dance examination sessions being conducted during this current heat wave and during periods of higher than normal temperatures in the coming week.
As every dance school is different, each dance school principal will need to evaluate their dance studio, as part of their risk assessment review for dance classes and examinations.
Please try to ensure good ventilation in the examination studio, that candidates, staff and the examiner have access to water and that you consider additional rest breaks, particularly for the higher level examinations which have a longer examination time. Also please consider the temperature not only in the exam studio but in other areas of the building.
Information is available on hydration, temperature and ventilation in dance spaces, warning signs for overheating through bodies such as One Dance UK, Equity, the Health and Safety Executive and the NHS – see links below;
Health and Safety Executive for guidance on risk assessment and hot temperatures
One Dance UK
Information on Heat Exhaustion from the NHS website at
If someone is ill or showing signs of overheating please or in case of an emergency (UK) call 999 or 111.
Guidance on hydration and dance spaces from One Dance UK resources
Water is vital for dancers and will vary from dancer to dancer. To maintain sufficient hydration levels during any form of exercise fluid loss must be replaced. Dehydration can have serious effects on the body including a decline in physical and mental performance. Please ensure your dancers have sufficient fluid and access to drinks before, during and after their examinations and classes.
Temperature and ventilation in dance spaces
There is no maximum temperature specified by the government for working conditions but an ideal temperature for a dance environment is around 21C and not below 18C. Ideally a heating/air conditioning system will assist in maintaining an optimum temperature for dancing, however depending on your studio this may not be available – please look at other ways of ventilating the space, opening doors and windows and using fans. It is also important that dancers are not too cold, so monitor the temperature. A dancers age and physical ability will also affect their temperature and it is important that this is considered and effective gradual warm up and cool downs are used for the dance genre and the dancers ability and their clothing.
Warning signs for overheating
- Dehydration thirst
- Sweating and fatigue
- Muscle cramps
- Heat exhaustion
- Elevated core body temperature
- Dizziness or light-headedness
- Cool, clammy skin
- Heat stroke
- High body core temperature
- Drowsiness or confusion
- Irritability, hot and wet or dry skin
- Nausea or vomiting
- Rapid pulse or heart rate
- Possible loss of consciousness
The symptoms apply to adults and children and children can become sleepy. If someone is showing signs of heat exhaustion, they need to be cooled down. Heat exhaustion is not usually serious if you can cool down within 30 minutes. If it turns into heatstroke, it needs to be treated as an emergency.
- Be aware of heat illness symptoms
- Keep hydrated
- Monitor weather and temperature conditions
- Modify activity and take more frequent breaks
- Wear clothing appropriate for the heat
- Match fluid intake with sweat and urine losses
- Use sports drinks in extreme conditions to replace electrolytes
- Use cooling fans or air conditioning
- Use ice or cold baths for active cooling of extremities