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I know when ballerinas perform a full-length ballet that they must have the stamina to last throughout the numerous variations they must dance. I have a problem with having enough energy to last that long. When there is a particular variation, for example the Gamzatti one in La Bayadere, I lose my breath by at like two thirds of it. How do I build up stamina so I don't burn out so fast?

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Time, maturity, and lots and lots of work :) Dancers are not expected to have that kind of strength at 16 or under. It takes years of training and then adding years of performances to build that kind of strength and stamina. By the time you have reached professional status, and then do some years of corps and soloist work, you should be able to build towards that stamina.

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If you run out of steam that early, that usually means that the variation is way too difficult for you -- right now. There are reasons why variations are danced by ballerinas. They are difficult, and they demand enormous staying power. Try other variations that aren't so hard. Stamina is built gradually, by going for long periods of work over a long period of time. You can't jump right away to the White Swan variation, for example, but the girls in the pas de trois might be just what you should be doing. I taught a variations class one time and all the students wanted to do the Swan Queen. Boy, did THEY ever learn why it takes a ballerina to dance that part!

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This kind of ties in... how is it ballerinas never ever look sweaty after dancing an entire ballet? I get hot after a few allegro combinations in center... I don't get it!

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Just pick up one of their costumes as they take it off :wink:

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