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Ballet Talk for Dancers



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My son's teacher has told me that for modesty reasons my son needs to cover up his ballet clothes when he's outside the studio (This is her policy for the girls as well). He wears form-fitting leggings over a sleeveless white leotard. He's a typical little boy in that he HATES changing clothes and can't see the need to change clothes more than a couple times a day, so once he puts those ballet clothes on he really fights the idea of taking them off again before bedtime (and he'd prefer just to sleep in them as well).


Tired of fighting him in the dressing room after class, I began wondering if this is a common rule among studios. Do your boys dress/undress at the studio or are they permitted to just wear their ballet clothes out "on the street"? Do they wear a cover-up over their clothes? That's an easier option for the girls as their tights are so thin under pants or they can just pull on a dress, but it's hot and bulky to pull jeans over his leggings and weird looking to have those black leggings sticking out under shorts.


Obviously, it's easy to pull a Tshirt over his leotard and he does do that, but covering up those leggings are a more difficult challenge so for now I guess he'll just have to put up with changing clothes after class.

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How about a "warm-up? Like the kind they wear over basketball uniforms, they are loose enough to fit over the tights and leotard, and serve both purpose's of being discreat, while keeping those warm muscles safe against surface air. Even in warm climates it is a neccesity.

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During winter months my son usually wears a sweatshirt and a pair of athletic-type warm-up pants over his dancewear. They are usually pretty roomy, and you can get the type of pants that zip or snap all they way up the sides. They are really easy to get in and out of before and after class.

During the summer, he just pushes his tights up so they are hidden by his shorts and away he goes. :yes:

(Only works with footless tights or his MStevens footed tights with holes cut in the bottoms of the feet.)

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Most of the males that I have seen after class have either a track suit (nylon outer with fleece inner) or something similar. Some of them are cropped length and they roll their tights up in the summer.

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Most studios we've encountered have the same policy for boys and girls - no dance clothes outside. My son wears a white t-shirt most of the time, not a leotard, so that's not an issue. On occassions where he wears a leotard he just throws a shirt over it. Even when he wore leggings instead of tights he always wore blue jeans or sweats over them. We lived in Texas during his leggings phase and it was never a problem. Now he wears flannel pajama pants over his tights - even when it's hot outside. This is pretty typical for the teen set where we live even in school so he doesn't feel like he stands out if we decide to drop by a store or something on the way home.


As for dressing/undressing at the stuio - DS avoids this. There is never really room and it takes a while. Also, if he arrives for class already dressed then he doesn't have to bring a bag, backpack, etc. to hold everything in. It makes arriving and leaving a lot quicker.

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Our studio also asks both boys & girls to wear something over their dancewear when coming & going. We are located in a large (not by NY standards but 15th largest city in the US) downtown area, and feel it's in their best interest to wear street clothes when outside.

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I appreciate ya'll's feedback! We don't have any older boys at our studio, so there's no way to watch and learn these things.


I think the pajama pants option would work out best for us-- so thin and baggy. We picked up a cheap pair at Walmart that my son really likes-- bright green with various amphibians with them. He looks forward to wearing them on his next class day. I like the rolling up the tights under shorts idea, but my son's leggings are too tight around the lower leg to do that.


This is such a wonderfully helpful forum-- thanks!

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I dont think its modesty anyway - just sensible. Ballet clothes are not street wear. Students and teachers are used to seeing them inside the studio, but members of the public are not used to seeing them on the street.



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*knock knock* butting in here - hope it's OK. Jjust to follow on from Jimpickles' comment about it being not just about modesty. Can I second that, by adding from my own upbringing by a dancer turned actress mother, who was quite firm with us about street wear, ballet and theatre costumes and make up, on grounds of learning appropriate professionalism. We learnt that the theatre is the theatre, and just as you don't go on stage wearing anything exccept what is appropriate for your role (so you take off your favourite ring or necklace or stud earrings etc etc etc), so when you leave by the stage door, you leave behind the trappings of the class or perfornmance. So you don't wear your watch in class, for example. I always feel that the getting into the dance clothes - for class or performance - is part of a focus and concentration on the task you're about to do - class or performance, and a way of separating it from the hurly burly of the rest of one's life.


Maybe to explain it this way might help your son understand and feel quite serious and grown up in learning professional ways?? I know that's the effect it had on me :wub:

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Guest rosiedax

:wub: My son's schools(3) did not permit dance clothing on the street. He wears cotton jazz pants over his tights. Issue of professionalism and student safety.

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If the dancer work hard, as suppose to, he will sweat and his dress will be wet. If he will dry it on himself it produces a) bad smell :devil: possible of arthritis for his back.

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This is also true, or at the very least, muscle spasms that certainly feel like arthritis!

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