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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Benefits of time off?

Guest ProudBalletParent

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Guest ProudBalletParent

Hello everyone, it's been a while :) Well, here's our CURRENT situaiton, :P It seems various teachers have expressed to us their opinion on dancers taking time off from dance (ballet specifically).


One teacher has her dancers take the whole month of August and the whole month of December off. She says she feels that their bodies need that.


Yet another teacher says that time off should be in moderation. For instance, maybe a few weeks in the summer and a few weeks around the Christmas season.


We have recently gotten off our holiday vacation from school and dancing. My dd (who will be 11 this year) had a total of 18 days off from dance classes. However, she is the type of child who has dance in her blood. Therefore, I would find her in the basement with her cd player and ballet shoes (sometimes in costume, B) ) dancing her heart out. Not just "flitting around", but actually using the counter top in one section of our basement and using it as a barre and going through a full barre.


The problems? Well, when she went back to her dance classes, BOTH her instructors noticed that she was popping her ribcage. With her dancing as much as she did, but with no one to supervise, she devellopped a bad habit that seems to require much thought to correct for her.


If she had been in classes, I feel she would not have learned this bad habit.


What are your opinions? At this time of year, I have to start thinking about my dd's summer dance schedule (good grief :pinch: )


Thanks everyone, and I hope your holidays were wonderful!

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Two weeks in the summer, two weeks in the winter are good continuous breaks. Occasional days off throughout the year are also beneficial.

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  • 2 months later...

Dear Mel Johnson (Mr. Johnson, Mr. Mel, ?),


As a newcomer to this board I am curious about whether one class per week during the first month of the summer is enough to help stave off the development of bad habits due to unsupervised practice at home?


My daughter will have four weeks off between the end of the ballet year and the beginning of her summer ballet classes. She has the option of taking one class per week during that four week stretch.


She is similar to ProudBalletParent's daughter in that she takes the dancing at home to another level and I'm concerned that, although she is having fun and that's fine, she may be more likely to get injured or learn "wrong."


Can you offer a suggestion?


Thank you!

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Depending on the student, that can be a viable option. I'm not crazy about unsupervised practice for those below an advanced state of study. I'd rather see a student take two weeks entirely off, then ease back into classes with a reduced schedule before undertaking something as arduous as a Summer Intensive. If, on the other hand, the summer course is just one class a day, five days a week for the month of July, then one class a week on hiatus might be a proper transition.

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