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Ballet Talk for Dancers


Guest jada1789

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Guest jada1789

Hi! I've just decided to go back to ballet at the age of 33 after a 12 year hiatus. I love this forum! It's full of useful information for adult dancers! I plan to start classes again after the holidays, and am doing everything I can think of to prepare myself...I already take cardio/strength training and pilates classes at the gym and have stepped up my yoga and stretching at home. I'm also doing ballet exercise videos and excersises to stregthen my ankles and feet, which were always problems before. Is there anything else I could be doing in these few weeks to help myself? Also, I'm self concious about my weight. Everything I've read says to get over it and wear a black leotard and pink tights anyway, but I really don't want to do that! I'd like something more flattering, a little more coverage, and a little more warmth since I know I'm going to be creaky! Any suggestions? And is it ok to wear a black sports bra under a black leotard even if it will probably show a little, or is that tacky and unproffesional? If it is not acceptable, how can I get adequate support? Are there any kinds of ballet slippers that have cushioning, and if not, is there any way to add some ? And does anyone here feel the need to take supplements such as glucosamine to spare their joints of the wear and tear? Its a lot of questions, I know! :) Thank goodness I found you! Thanks in advance for your help!

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Hi jada, and welcome to the Adult Ballet Students' Forum here at Ballet Talk on Ballet Alert! Online!


Don't worry about a thing. You're doing lots more than most adult returnees do to prepare for starting to work again. In fact, you may want to ease up a bit, so you don't start out already worn to a frazzle. :) The weight issue is a non-starter. Don't worry about it. If the studio you're going to be studying in has a history of adult students, then they've seen bigger'n you, believe me! Likewise, find out what the dress policy is for adult students. Wear what will allow you to work unencumbered, and conforms to the school policy. If anything goes, you're a returnee, not a newbie, so you know what's classy and what's clunky. Likewise the sports bra, no problem. Shucks, I used to teach a lady who wore a longline bra to class! Never full corsets, but....


And I don't much feel the need for supplements, except an appropriate multiple vitamin, perhaps. Glucosamine and Chondroitin take quite awhile to show any benefits, if there are any to show, and then the maintenance regime goes in. Added expense, in my opinion, for insufficient benefit. I will, however, tolerate other opinions.

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Hi Jada, I similarly returned to ballet after a long time off and it's one of the best decisions I ever made! :)


I've noticed in my classes that a lot of people add an extra layer over their tights and leotards -- yoga or sweat pants, tee shirts and sweaters -- so if that makes you feel comfortable, that's an option. I usually wear a pair of shorts made out of sweatshirt type material -- I got them at the Gap -- over my tights and leo to spare myself and others the sight of my thighs :D or sometimes a pair of black tights. It's more of a psychological thing for me, I like the feeling of not being so exposed, while at the same time not being so bundled up that my teacher can't see what she needs to correct me.


I take glucosamine chondroitin and believe it's helped my very aging joints. Don't take it pre-emptively, though, wait and see if you even have any joint pain from class -- you might not! :shrug: I'm much older than you and did get pretty achy -- like, almost not being able to straighten up after getting out of bed the morning after a class! -- and started taking the supplements. They've worked out great for me.

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Welcome Jada! Get prepare of becoming addicted!

I cannot say that I'm in a similar situation as you since I started ballet as a complete beginner two years ago.


Enough about me, the split-soles from sansha has some kind of small heel cushioning in them. I find it to be more comfortabe for my heel than regular full-sole leather slippers. I don't know if the other brands of canvas split sole has cushioning. But on the other hand I ding that the studio floor is rather sprung, so you get some cushioning from the floor itself already :)


Have fun!

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Guest jada1789

Thanks for all the great advice! It is especially a relief to know that I should back off some of my preparation work! :sweating: Registration for the next term is on Jan.3. I can hardly wait! Unfortunately it looks like will only be able to take one ballet class a week, because most of their classes are offered in the afternoon, which I can't make. There is a modern class which I could also take once a week, which I know will complement the ballet, even though it would not be my first choice. In small town Missouri, I have to take what I can get, and since theNYCB won't return my calls... :)

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Guest garlrm06

Hi Jada! If you're school is very strict about dress and T-shirts, and other aforementioned cover-ups are out, how about a black long-sleeved leo over black tights (I like the footless ones). And a neat little ballet skirt is a very reassuring thing - kind of like those little skirts that people have on their bathing suits. In no time, you won't even be thinking so much about your weight - a very good thing


I like to keep in shape on off-class days with floor barre exercises, NYCB workouts, and Pilates tapes/DVDs.

Good luck, and happy dancing!

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