Gymnastics vs. Dance – Which One is Better?

adminGymnastics 10148 Comments

gymnastics vs dance

Dancing is a part of gymnastics and many dancers love to do gymnastics, so how do you determine which is better? Both gymnastics and dance have similar elements, but many people have a favorite between the two.

If you are trying to decide whether to concentrate solely on dancing or gymnastics there are many things to consider to decide which is better.

Have You Tried Both Dancing and Gymnastics?

Many gymnasts will take a dance class to help with their dance moves on the floor, and dancers will take tumbling classes for the same reason. During these classes, some kids and teens will find out that their true passion lies in a different place than they first thought.

On the other hand, a dancer or gymnast could take an alternative class that only fosters their passion for their favorite activity. For a gymnast or dancer to decide whether gymnastics or dance is better, they need to try both activities.

Dance is Easy to Start at any Age

When you hear or talk to talented gymnasts, you usually find out they started the sport when they were really young. In fact, the best gymnasts start at a young age, and older, beginning gymnasts have a harder time learning difficult skills simply because of their height.

Dance, on the other hand, is a talent that can be discovered at any age. Kids as old as 16 or 17 can start dance classes and excel in them quickly.

Gymnastics competition seasons are very long and gymnasts usually only move up one level a year, which can make it harder for older kids to compete in gymnastics for long periods of time, or move up to the challenging competitive levels.

Gymnastics Tumbling Can Be Part of a Dance Routine

One of the great things about gymnastics tumbling is that it can easily be added to any dance routine. Leaps, jumps, pointed toes, and strength exercises are all things usually associated with gymnastics or dance.

A choreographer can also add handstands, cartwheels, rolls, back handsprings, and other aerial tumbling passes to dance routines.

However, stunts and tricks in a dance routine are not usually the primary focus of the routine. In gymnastics, the stunts and tricks are the heart of a routine and the dancing is just time filler between tumbling passes.

Dancers Use Both Legs – Gymnasts Tend to Favor One Side

Dancers and gymnasts can do many of the same stunts and tricks, but they trained differently. Gymnasts for one usually have a strong side. For instance, they lead with their left leg during leaps or hurdles.

Dancers, on the other hand, are trained to use both legs, which can make some dance routines difficult for a gymnast. If a gymnast is in a group routine, but usually leads with her left leg, it may be difficult for her to turn to the right in a dance routine.

Many Different Styles of Dance

One of the reasons so many people like dance is because there are so many different styles to choose from. Ballet is perfect for those that want a structured, controlled form of dance, and lyrical or contemporary dance focuses on emotion.

Competitive Dance Can Be More Expensive Than Gymnastics

Many gymnast moms will tell you that gymnastics is expensive. But competitive dance can be just as expensive or more expensive. Depending on how many classes a dancer needs the cost can add up quickly.

Most dance studios require classes to be paid for separately, and each routine requires a different costume. Depending on the design of the costume, it can easily cost upwards of $80 to $400 and that’s before shoes.

Gymnastics is expensive too. Most gym parents pay class fees, private lesson fees, and have to travel to competitions all over the country.

Training leos can cost anywhere from $40 to $60. Competition leos can be upwards of $120, but most gymnasts only have one competition leo.

Not all Gymnasts are Good Dancers and Not all Dancers can do Gymnastics

When you see a gymnast stretching across the floor, you may think they would be a great dancer! The same goes for a dancer who can nail a back handspring on a gymnasium floor.

But you might be surprised to find out that while dancers and gymnasts have a great deal in common, being good in one activity doesn’t guarantee you’ll be great in another.Gymnasts do a great deal more than tumble, and just because a dancer can tumble doesn’t mean they would be great on the balance beam, uneven bars, or vault.

Many gymnasts also struggle with dancing. The floor routine is only 1 of 4 events that a gymnast participates in during classes, practices, and competitions.

Some gymnasts do as little dance as possible in their routines because they aren’t strong dancers, but are amazing tumblers, but they can’t get their mind around the footsteps that are required to be a strong dancer.

When it comes down to which is better, gymnastics or dancing, it’s a personal decision. Whether someone loves gymnastics or dancing depends on the talent and passion of the person choosing between the two.Photo Credit: © Ukrphoto & Logoboom |

48 Comments on “Gymnastics vs. Dance – Which One is Better?”

  1. that did not help at all because i am a dancer and gymnast and i have to choose but i have 2 strong sides trained both ways and i know it is expensive and i know i want to do ballet and jazz styles.

    1. DANCERS: on behalf of most of the gymnastics community including myself, we respect you. i will say that those pointe shoes look graceful but are literally torturous and that’s coming first hand because i have a sister who is serious about dance and i saw the pain it causes. dance requires A LOT of leg strength and its difficult, not to even MENTION the series of turns they do. you need to have a lot of core strength to be able to perform so many turns without stepping out early, all while having to match it to the rhythm of the music.

      GYMNASTS: ok i am a gymnast myself and i will say that gymnastics is hands down one of the most difficult sports there is. on bars, we need a lot of both upper body strength (to keep ourselves firmly to the bars) leg strength (for releases and other skills involving similar motions). on floor, we need to be incredibly strong AND graceful at the same time because our floor routines also incorporate A LOT of dance elements including difficult turns, leap sequences, and dance moves/choreography. vault: to be able to execute a successful vault, gymnasts must be able to have an incredible fast sprint and powerful leg strength in order to hit the spring board so that the person in question will have enough momentum to do whatever skill is at hand. finally, beam. beam is similar to floor, combining both dance and gymnastics (but without the music). the only difference is that the gymnastics skills being performed are less challenging and everything is being done on a 4 inch wooden plank elevated 5 feet into the air. last thing: gymnastics is almost physics defying. 🙂

  2. I am an old gymnast but I only did it for two and a half years. But I wasn’t able to get anywhere. So we switch he’d gyms but I was supposed to be on team and I didn’t. So I quit and went to dance. I was always a double sided gymnast which made my coaches mad. But doing day me is way better overall. Sure it requires alot of the same stuff dance will get u somewhere gymnastics won’t.

  3. Maddy you have to strong sides which is perfect. I highly recommend dance. You won’t break your back or anything for that matter as easily. It will be hard to say good bye but trust me you will be much happier.

  4. I only take dance, but I do agree that gymnastics can be very hard, but just like dance they both take practice and I think they are equally hard…#dance…?

  5. Dance does not cost a lot, I went dancing when I was 10. I did all dances; ballet, hip-hop, jazz and it only cost 50 bucks a month

  6. Both dance and gymnastics is very hard on your body. When I get home from dance I normally have to use heating pads and ice. When I get back from gymnastics, I normally am just able to deal with the pain. Even though dance hurts worst, I believe dance is better because you can express yourself. All the pain is worth it.

  7. Personally, I think both sports require much practice, blood, sweat, tears, and determination. But I do know that us dancers and gymnasts are some of THE BEST athletes of all time. Also, we can both agree that we are betta than CHEER!!!!

    1. I do competitive dance and its very time consuming and requires a lot of attention towards your body awareness. But if your want to pursue dance you must be extremely talented or have started at a young age also the cost vary s between different studios and if you do it competitively or not . I think Dance is harder after doing both for a while dance has overall been harder but still has all of my passion

  8. Rin, cheer is a good combination of both gymnastics and dance. Cheer also requires a good amount of strength, coordination, and the ability to do your “cheers” while running around

  9. gymnastics and dance are both hard it just depends on your body and how hard you work I am a gymnast but dance can be equally as hard depending on how hard you work.

  10. I agree with maddy because I too am a gymnast and dancer and I am good at both. Where ever you got your sources, go and check em’ again cause’ that is definetely not true what so ever.

  11. Tiara
    Yes dance is way more expensive if you are doing it competitively. I am a mother of a gymnast and a dancer. We pay $400 per month for dance, $80 per group costume (6group dances) $400 per solo costume. $400 per solo choreography, about $500 per competition (5competitions a season) then there are group dance choreography fees, shoes, travel expenses. I would much prefer the gymnast fees. TRUST ME ON THAT

  12. Gymnastics is better. It requires full body strength and uses more hand eye coordination. Dancers have less balance and have less strength. Gymnasts aren’t stronger? Every event requires two body part strengths, bars for arms and core to pull our selfs up. Floor all three to do high jumps for flips core and legs and for tumbling all three. Vault we need core to flip without flail. And we need leg to be able to jump high enough. Beam is all three to! Legs to balance, arms to hold our whole body wieght from falling and core so we don’t lose balance. All this proves that gymnastics is better for the body.

    1. I have lots of respect for gymnasts and I understand that it is HARD but I can tell that you have never done dance or at least not anything competitive. Dancers are FREAKING STRONG and they have to have AMAZING balance! Ballet dancers for instance have to do a bunch of insane moves on the TIP of their TOES! AND on top of this, they have to make it look COMPLETELY EFFORTLESS by performing and taking on a character. I really don’t see how you could say that they have less strength and balance than gymnasts.

    2. grr me mad ur info wrong dancers need a lot of strength u would know if u had a brain

  13. I think that dance and gymnastics are both hard and take a lot of work. Dance is more about the movement of your body and gymnastics is more about your form. I started gymnastics when I was two and dance when I was four. This year I quit gymnastics but when I went to the gym to see my friends all I did was miss it. I don’t know how to choose between them. I have broken a bone in neither of them so I would disagree that you get more hurt in gymnastics or dance.

  14. gymnastics is way harder. can u tell me that you can do your acro skills on a 4 inch wide beam? come back to me when u have the answer and talent to do that like i can

    1. I don’t think that this is very fair. Dance is much more than putting on a tutu and smiling while doing plies at barre. I think that we can all agree that each sport has their strengths. If you haven’t ever danced, you can’t possibly judge the sport.

    2. Actually٫ Lailah٫ I am a dancer and yes I can do that so before you at us with an attitude actually think about what ur saying BC that is rude and being the opposite of humble maybe if u tried being a good dancer than dont say anything.

  15. I’ve done dance all my life and i have also done gymnastics tumbling. I think they are both very hard, yet very similar. The good thing about them is that they both can be used in dance and floor routines. Dance can also help gymnasts with flexibility, strength, leaps, turns, and technique . I definitely think you should try both!!

  16. i think that gymnastics is a lot harder than dancing because you have to start at a young age but in dancing i think that you don’t have to you can start at any age not only that in gymnastics it does involve dancing i’m not saying i don’t like dancing because i do but i just think over all gymnastics is harder

    1. At dance not everyone starts not at a young age I was 1. And dancers on my team can do whips and back flips too. We also get trained 7 days a week and really hard for 12 hours so gymnastics is not harder. Most dancer can do gymnastics too including me.

  17. I am a dancer. Maybe you should give actual dance at my level a try. Also Tiara dance cost so much if you compete like me. I have never done gymnastics but I know it is hard. So I believe at some point they equal out.

  18. I do dance and gymnastics I have no idea witch to chose from. I think I will do gymnastics because it has more events than dance.

  19. I am a dancer and it it very hard I did gymnastics when I was nine gymnastics was hard too, dance uses balence and strangth, gymnastics uses mostly the same thing, I would say dance is better for your body.

  20. I am a dancer and a gymnast, I started gymnastics when I was 6 and dance when I was 10 gymnastics is harder because you have to do flips and stuff on a beam. Dance is hard to because you have to balence and do the movment perfectly, so I think gymnastics is better.

  21. I think both sports are equally as hard in dance you have to be on the tip of your toes while dancing and in gymnastics you have to do tricks on a 4in beam. I think both sports have their strengths and weaknesses but they are equally as hard.

  22. I think that dance is better for your body because it involves balence and strength gymnastics cam make you have problems when your older.

  23. I am a dancer and let me tell you how hard it is. I go to compititions and I see how hard the other girls work. Gymnastics is also hard but you have a bigger chance of getting hurt my your a gymnast.

  24. I am a competitive dancer, an let me tell you it is way harder than gymnastics. When i have ballet, You have to balance on the tip of your toes on one foot! and you have to make it look completely effortless. so I don’t know how you can say that gymnastics is harder. I choose dance

  25. I am a competitive dancer, an let me tell you it is way harder than gymnastics. When i have ballet, You have to balance on the tip of your toes on one foot! and you have to make it look completely effortless. so I don’t know how you can say that gymnastics is harder. I do 6 classes a week ,12 hours a week and when I get home im in so much pain i have to use heating pads. so yea dance is better and makes you stronger.

  26. I am a gold Xcel gymnast and It is very competitive but most of my friends who are dancers say that dance is very very competitive! Also, does price really matter as long as you’re doing the sport you love most? Both take lots of time and dedication…I say try both then decide your fave! No, Just cause you do gymnastics doesn’t mean you break bones easier, It is because you are growing and getting older. Though in Gymnastics you develop muscles in the upper body, core, arms, and legs while dancers focus on the muscles in your legs. gymnasts tend to favor a side that can imbalance muscle strength. but you can’t go wrong with either one… if you are thinking of competitions dance comps. are all day and practice is almost every day, but comps. for gymnasts are only 3-5 hours and practice depends on what level but for Xcel gold it is 3-4 days a week. If you want to be an Olympian in gymnastics you might have to start at an early age like 5-7. I hope that helped!

  27. Yall are just saying one BC u do it. They are both great and by doing what ur doing can hurt someone’s feelings.

  28. I’m a dancer but i personally think that both sports are kinda the same, If you are older then I think you should dance because you could probably catch up easily. Gymnastics is hard because you have to use all your muscles to do one trick, but dance is equally as hard because you have to have insane balance and strength in your legs.

  29. I think gymnastics is better because you have more events and it is a lot harder because you have to do flips on the beam and floor and you have to do kips on the bar and a dancer would fail badly and same for vault and you would have to do a jump split on the beam with barely any mats under the beam so that is why I know gymnastics is harder plus I’m a gymnast too.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.