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Just started pointe, trouble getting over box


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I'm 26 years old and started ballet about 3 years ago. I take class four times a week, 3 1/2 hours on Monday, 3 1/2 hours on Wednesday night, 1 hour on Tuesday and 1 hour on Friday. The class I was taking on Friday was pre-pointe, three weeks ago my teacher moved me to the beginning pointe class. It was so exciting going to get fitted and getting my first beautiful pair of pointe shoes, it has been a dream since I was little. My only disappointment is that as hard as I try I can not seem to get all the way over the box. Is this normal for somebody just starting pointe? I apologize if this is not the correct forum for posting this question. I wasn't sure whether or not to post in the pointe forum or the adult ballet forum. I would appreciate any advice.


Thank you.

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Hello lyricgirl, and welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers! :lol: And yes, this is the right forum.


There are a couple of situations which could cause this problem. One would be that the shank in the shoe you got is too strong for your foot. If you have a hard shank, you may need to work on bending it a bit to soften it and try to get it a bit more flexible.


The other problem would be that you might not have enough flexibility in your feet, and/or strength and rotation, to get you all the way up there. If you don't have much arch and instep, plus flexibility and strength, it's really hard to get there. Start with the shoe, but also talk to your teacher in terms of the structure of your foot, your strength, and your rotation. Do you have a high demi pointe, or do you have trouble getting all the way up in soft shoes?

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Hi Lyricgirl,


I also had trouble getting over the pointe particularly on my right foot when I started for the first time 2 years ago. It was frustrating because there were other absolute begginners with much less ballet experience and technique that did not seem to have this problem. I found it to be a combination of ill fitting shoes, and lack of flexibility and strength. Two years later, I have no problem getting over the pointe however I still struggle with proper weight placement on the right side.


Although I find pointe work quite challenging it has definitly helped my overall technique. You can really identify your weaknesses so that you can work on correcting them in technique class. Try not to get frustrated. My progress has been slow but very gratifying in the end. -Amathyst

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Maybe you want to talk to your teacher but as she has moved you up I am sure you will do fine in the near future. Everything takes a lot of time in ballet, especially pointe work :yes:


Amathyst: I have the same problem as you but for me its my left foot :)

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I also had this problem, and I thought it was my shoe(s) (more problem with my left foot than right), so mentioned it to my teacher, she said the problem was with me, not my shoes, until, at the end of the class the teacher asked me how my toes were holding up. I told her my toes were fine, it was the TOP of my feet that I was having problems with. :shrug: Then I showed her how the vamp of the shoe was cutting into the top of each foot. Then, she did admit my shoes were not correct for my feet, and that I needed a shorter vamp. I asked if the shoes would break in any more than they had already, and she said no. And, (this is the "good" part), then she said "when these shoes wear out, get a shorter vamp next time". :huh: Heck, when they wear out! I didn't wait for that, I went directly to the store and got a different pair of shoes! I was wearing Grisko 2007 and changed to Chacotts. Made a huge difference. Although, now I do have sore toes! But I am getting up and over the box! :thumbsup:

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  • 2 weeks later...

If you and your teacher determine that the shoes are at least part of the problem, and if you haven't done so already, you might want to fill out the pointe shoe suggestion form in the pointe shoe forum... Ms. De Vor gives excellent advice.

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