What It's Like to Coach a Dance Team for People With Down Syndrome


There are many cool things about my job at Down Syndrome of Louisville. I get to teach cooking classes, I get to plan social events, I host a book club, I get to take lots of photographs of happiness and love and share it on our social media.

I get to meet amazing new families of babies with an extra chromosome and watch the Down syndrome community swoop in and hold them up when they need a lift. Then, I get to see those same (once scared) families grow to be the power parents — advocating for their kiddos and then becoming the hands to hold and ears to listen.

The list goes on and on and on. You might be thinking, “Wow, Carly it must be hard to choose your favorite thing, your job is so great.” But you’d be wrong. I coach a dance team at Down Syndrome of Louisville. A dance team made up of almost 60 performers who have a something extra. A dance team who works so hard we have to sometimes force them to stop and take a sip of water. A dance team so confident  in themselves that the moment one of their songs is played, no matter where they are, they start doing the choreography. A dance team so powerful that they make every audience member get up and move. A dance team with so much heart that every video we share goes viral. That dance team is the “Boogie Down Crew.” Every time my ego tries to get in the way, they remind me to dance like no one is watching. It is so much more fun that way.

Group of people with Down syndrome wearing a green shirt and dancing in unison with arms up high

Group of people with Down syndrome wearing blue shirts and dancing in unison

You should try it.

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