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Sizing on mens dancewear


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I have finally decided to that the next step and purchase tights for the first time, however it would seem that as compared to the majority of male dancers I have a denser and larger build. Most companies list there XL as falling somewhere around the range of 5'8"-6" and 150-175, maybe its just me but that either sounds sickly or stickly, anyways I fall rather under the 5'10 195 and can't decide what size I should buy

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Hi, Brollix2, and welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers. :)


For what it's worth, XL will fit you just fine. Remember, tights stretch by their very nature.


But you're a teacher, and this is the first time you've ever bought tights? Can you provide some more detail?

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Actually its a bit of an odd situation. I started dancing ballet 2 years ago but being that I had loads of free time and I'm a quick learner I made an intensive study of it in those 2 years, most of the focus went into technique and partnering. However teh studio I was at never required tights so I never felt comfortable doing so. More recently I move to a very rural area and 3 months after doing so I had helped choreogaph a ballet piece for a school show, my father is a drama teacher, and was approached by one of the dancer's older sister, she was opening a new studio and was wondering if I would be able to teach. At first I was very wary of the idea seeing as how little experience I had myself. During the summer I started teaching a younger ballet class and came to realise that every school within at least a 1 hour radius was jazz based and most of them had only recently begun to introduce ballet within the last 2 or 3 years. For the most part I am a dance conditioning and technique instructor with one of the emphasis on my hiring being my knowledge of vocabulary(before leaving college I was a student in education, and have experience in P.E. Weight training, dance, yoga, pilate, etc)(Also studied french, bio and anatomy). I am co-teaching with a wonderful other young teacher with around 2 decades of ballet experience herself which is quite helpful.

Edited by Brollix2
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... Most companies list there XL as falling somewhere around the range of 5'8"-6" and 150-175, ...

Trust me on this ... size charts are filed under "fiction"! :) I have dance belts that vary more than 2", same manufacturer same model same size; I have "Medium" tights that are longer and wider than another company's "XL" (same material). Don't even get started on the 2-3 size difference between street clothes and dance clothing!


Best in my experience is to buy from the most reliable manufacturer you can find (look through the archives here for a variety of opinions). You'll likely have to buy online, and they are not returnable, so just get 1 or 2 pair and see how they fit. Maybe get one of each candidate size and throw out the loser. Then you can get more of the same later - that's why you want a reliable supplier. You may have to repeat the process with a different maker. It's boring but I just keep getting the same stuff, over and over.


Fortunately Mel is right about stretch. I'm 6'1/175 with longish legs and XL works well, though XL footed are a bit short so I rarely use them. But in a pinch I can wear L even if they are footed - I just have to yank them back up periodically. :D

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You have two years experience in ballet, and you're teaching??? :)


Since you're already in the situation, do the best you can, but under most circumstances, I'd really like you to have much more ballet-specific training than that before you started teaching. You're lucky to have a more experienced colleague. Try to confine your teaching to the very beginners.


Now, as to the tights, your being a teacher may make this question irrelevant. Male teachers need to wear pants. It's not so much for the kids, it's for the parents, who won't take kindly to a man in tights if their daughters are involved, no matter how good a dance belt you have on! They'll sound like my grandmothers! "Dear, your FORM is showing!"

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Gotta agree with the Major. A teacher can get away with Jazz pants, but no tights.


For class where you're the student or performances, tights are standard. I have a XL pair of tights that are way too long, and they bunch up at the knees and ankles.


Compare tights more by inseam than height or weight. they are cut to fit snugly against the crotch for ease of movement.


Baltogs tend to run large, Capezio and M. Stevens a little smaller.


Black is really the only color you should buy.

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Fortunately, all of the students are beginners in ballet, also the studio owner has put an emphasis on continued learning so, when I can find the time to, I am taking intermidiate-advanced level adult classes at a very respectable studio about 1 hour away.

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