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As a dance instructor, you can expect to earn roughly $38,000 per year, on average. As with people in other professions, your level of experience and expertise can help you earn as much as possible.
Average Dance Instructor Salaries
According to the jobs website Indeed, dance instructors earned an average salary of $38,000 as of 2015. Not all dance teachers work on a salary basis, however. Some also work on a per-class or hourly basis. According to The Art Career Project, hourly wages range from $10 to $30 per hour.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, meanwhile, lists self-enrichment teachers who work in performing arts companies as earning an annual mean wage of $47,930 as of May 2020 -- though that figure is not exclusive to just dance instructors.
Becoming a Dance Instructor
Being a dance instructor requires an extensive knowledge of dance technique and choreography -- skills that instructors often pick up being dancers themselves. Dancers often start learning the craft at a very young age, taking part in dance classes or even attending private dance academies. At whatever level, learning as many types of dance as possible -- including ballet, tap, jazz and Latin dances -- can help you be a diverse teacher with more opportunities to teach.
At the college level, dancers and aspiring teachers might earn a bachelor's or master's degree in dance or performing arts, which can be a requirement for landing a job at a dance school. Dancers who want to teach classes or have their own dance schools sometimes also study business, to learn the bookkeeping and organizational skills necessary for running a successful business. In addition, leadership skills, organizational skills, the ability to inspire students, sales skills, and basic first aid and injury prevention skills will help you be successful as a dance teacher.
Nicole Vulcan has been a journalist since 1997, covering parenting and fitness for The Oregonian, careers for CareerAddict, and travel, gardening and fitness for Black Hills Woman and other publications. Vulcan holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism from the University of Minnesota. She's also a lifelong athlete and is pursuing certification as a personal trainer.