Cost to Become a Dance Instructor: A Financial Guide for Aspiring Teachers

An energetic dance instructor leads a class, illustrating the cost to become a dance instructor, including fees for certification, education, and studio operations, as presented by INSURE FITNESS GROUP.

What’s the cost of becoming a dance instructor? You’re about to find answers. From certification fees and educational expenses to the price tag of running a studio, every future dance instructor should be aware of the financial commitment required. This guide outlines the essential costs you must consider without diving too deeply into the specifics, priming you for what’s ahead in your dance teaching journey.

Understanding the Financial Investment

Becoming a dance instructor is not just about mastering dance steps; it requires a substantial investment in education, certification, and supplementary training. This financial commitment paves the way for a rewarding career in dance education, equipping dance instructors with the necessary skills, credibility, and expertise to inspire students and impart their love for dance.

Education and Degree Programs

Pursuing a bachelor’s degree in performing arts or dance education is a significant first step toward becoming a dance instructor. This higher education lays the foundation for your dance knowledge and teaching skills, enabling you to teach dance effectively. Institutions like the Royal Academy of Dance USA offer advanced and specialized training programs to shape the next generation of dance educators.

Reputable programs like the Diploma in Dance Teaching Studies involve part-time study over two years, costing an annual membership fee of $87.

Certification Program Fees

Certifications such as those offered by:

  • DEA
  • DMA
  • NDEO
  • RAD
  • CDTA
  • Cecchetti USA
  • Dance Teacher Certification
  • Advanced Teacher Certificate
  • Associate Specialized Training Certificate
  • Student Assistant Certificate

Add credibility to your dance teaching profile with a teaching certification. While online certifications can start from as low as $200, more intensive programs like the Dance Masters of America training program cost $400.

The National Dance Education Organization’s CiDE costs between $5,500 to $6,200. However, these certifications enhance the dance teacher’s career prospects and credibility, making them a worthy investment.

Supplementary Training Costs

In addition to degree programs and certifications, dance instructors should also invest in supplementary training programs like the Certificate in Dance Education (CiDE) and training offered by the American Dance Institute. The frequency and cost of these supplementary training programs can vary, with dance workshops and masterclasses ranging from $9 per hour to $875 for a week-long workshop.

The Price Tag of Experience

Experiential learning is an integral part of a dance instructor’s journey. This involves investing in:

  • Dance classes
  • Workshops
  • Performance tickets
  • Networking events

These experiences allow dance teachers, also known as dance educators, to work as instructors in diverse teaching environments to maintain and improve their dance skills, build connections, and stay informed about the dance community and various dance styles through dance lessons.

Dance Classes and Workshops

Maintenance and improvement of dance skills necessitates regular attendance of dance classes and workshops. Some key points to consider are:

  • The average cost for children’s classes is $16 per class
  • Adult beginners typically pay between $60 to $150 per month for traditional dance school tuition
  • These classes provide invaluable hands-on experience and exposure to different styles and teaching methods.

Performance Tickets and Networking Events

Networking events and live performances provide opportunities to connect with professionals in the field and gain insights into the latest trends in dance education. Tickets to dance show performances typically range between $13.74 and $19, depending on the show’s location.

Networking events can cost between $100 to $2,300, depending on the scale and offerings of the event.

Setting Up Your Dance Studio

Setting up a dance studio is a significant financial milestone in a dance instructor’s career. It involves securing a suitable space, procuring essential equipment and supplies, and investing in marketing and promotion.

Let’s take a closer look at these expenses.

Space Rental or Purchase

Securing a suitable studio space is pivotal to establishing a dance studio. Renting or leasing a dance studio space in the United States can range from $2,000 to $5,000 monthly. It’s important to consider location, studio size, and amenities when renting or purchasing a space.

Essential Equipment and Supplies

Following space acquisition, outfitting your studio with the requisite items becomes the task. This includes mirrors, ballet barres, padded or marley floors, and a sound system.

The cost of these items can vary significantly, with mirrors ranging from $300 to $700, barres priced at $90 to $120 each, and small stereo systems available from $150 to $300.

Marketing and Promotion Expenses

Promoting your studio effectively is vital to attract prospective students. This includes:

  • Website development, with costs ranging from $895 to $50,000
  • Social media advertising, with costs ranging from $0.26 to $2 per action or follow
  • Print materials

The cost of these services can vary significantly.

Salary Expectations vs. Startup Costs

A financial feasibility assessment of your dance teaching journey necessitates carefully balancing potential income and startup costs. Let’s explore the potential earnings and how they match up against the startup costs.

Potential Earnings Overview

The earning potential for dance instructors can vary significantly. Here are some examples:

  • The average annual salary for a dance instructor is around $40,385.
  • Experienced instructors in prime locations can earn up to $52,000 annually.
  • Hourly rates can range from approximately $16.79 to $50-70 per hour for experienced instructors in prime locations.

Balancing Income and Expenditures

A sustainable and profitable dance instructing career requires a careful balance between income and expenditures. This involves:

  • Setting suitable fees for classes
  • Creating a baseline budget
  • Setting financial priorities
  • Establishing a separate ‘Dance’ bank account for managing business finances.

Additional Considerations for Specialized Dance Instruction

Specialized dance instruction, such as adaptive dance programs and competitive dance coaching, can offer additional income streams. However, these specialized programs also come with their costs and considerations.

Adaptive Dance Programs

Adaptive dance programs cater to individuals with disabilities or special needs. These programs require additional training and equipment, with costs ranging from several hundred to a few thousand dollars. However, this investment allows dance instructors to broaden their student base and offer a more inclusive dance environment.

Competitive Dance Coaching

Coaching competitive dancers can be another viable income stream for dance instructors. Still, it comes with additional costs such as travel expenses, competition fees, and costumes.

The average family can anticipate incurring an average of $1500-$7500 for travel expenses when participating in a competitive dance competition.

Financing Your Dance Teaching Journey

There are various opportunities for financing your dance teaching journey, including scholarships and grants. These financial aids can help offset the costs of education, training, and setting up your dance studio.

Scholarship Opportunities

There are numerous scholarships for dance instructors to assist with educational and training expenses. These scholarships are usually merit-based and can significantly reduce the financial burden of becoming a dance instructor.

Grant Possibilities

Grants are another viable option for financing your dance teaching journey. These grants can range from those offered by the National Endowment for the Arts for choreographers to grants specifically for dance nonprofit organizations.

The Long-term Financial Benefits of Being a Dance Instructor

Becoming a dance instructor offers both immediate and long-term financial benefits, including:

  • Career advancement opportunities
  • Potential to build a reputable brand
  • Increased demand for your services
  • Higher-income potential

Career Advancement and Higher Earnings

There are numerous career advancement opportunities for dance instructors, including becoming a head instructor, opening your dance studio, or starting your own dance company. These advancements offer personal satisfaction and increase earnings, with dance school owners maintaining a profit margin ranging from 15% to 20% of their revenue.

Building a Reputable Brand

Attracting students to your dance studio necessitates creating and fostering a reputable brand. This involves providing exceptional customer service, maintaining a cohesive online presence, and effectively marketing your dance studio.

A well-regarded brand can increase demand for your services and higher income potential.


Becoming a dance instructor involves significant financial investment, but it also offers rewarding returns. Aspiring dance instructors can ensure a sustainable and profitable career by carefully considering the costs associated with education, training, and setting up a dance studio and balancing them against potential earnings. With additional opportunities for specialized instruction and career advancement, the financial benefits of being a dance instructor can extend far beyond the initial investment.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost to learn how to dance?

Learning to dance can cost anywhere from $10 to $20 per hour for group classes and $60 to $150 per hour for private lessons, depending on the instructor’s fee. Private dance lessons nationally average between $75 and $100 per hour. The cost of dancing as a hobby ranges from $60 to $150 per month for tuition at a traditional dance school.

How do I become a dance teacher in NY?

To become a dance teacher in New York, you can pursue Dance Education – with an initial NYS Certification in Dance (MA) program, which leads to New York State certification to teach Dance Pre K-12. After completing three years of full-time, paid teaching experience, including one year of mentored teaching, you can apply for professional certification.

How do I become a dance instructor in Texas?

To become a dance instructor in Texas, you must pass the TExES Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12 (PPR) and the TExES Dance 6-12 exams after receiving approval from your teacher preparation program. Good luck!

Do you have to be a dancer to be a dance teacher?

You don’t have to be a dancer to be a dance teacher. However, extensive experience in dance, choreography, and teaching is essential to pursue a career in dance education.

What are the typical costs of becoming a dance instructor?

Becoming a dance instructor typically involves obtaining a degree in performing arts or dance education, specialized training programs, certification fees, and setting up a dance studio, including space rental or purchase, equipment, and marketing expenses. These costs can add up significantly.

Meet The Author:

Parker Franklin

Parker, IFG’s Brand Manager since 2022, began his wellness journey in 2020, leading to a significant personal transformation. He holds a journalism degree from Murray State University and started his career as an award-winning journalist in western Kentucky before transitioning into marketing and PR.

At IFG, Parker is responsible for writing content, managing The Fit newsletter, and overseeing promotions and collaborations with affiliate fitness organizations.

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