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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Am I too old?


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I am 37 and wanting to start ballet lessons, I used to love ballet as a child and would love to tone up and dance to exercise.

I am a little overweight but am starting a diet to lose the weight.

Do you think I am too old to start and will end up making a fool of myself?

There are local adult classes near me but I worry they will all be full of super-toned talented ballerinas! :thumbsup:

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Welcome, skyrocket! You're never too old to do something you really want to do, as long as you are healthy and strong enough to do it. We have a LOT of beginning adult students here, and many of them are much older than you are. Go for it! Don't wait until you think you are already in shape, just go do it and let ballet help you get there. :thumbsup:

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Thanks Victoria!

I guess I am just nervouse about people thinking of me as the old fatty in the corner! I have about 2 stone to lose. If I practiced every day at this level how long do you think it would take me to tone up?

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I'm sorry, skyrocket, but we don't know that, and we really don't discuss weight issues here on Ballet Talk for Dancers. In terms of toning, that depends totally on your body type, what exercise you are doing, how much, etc., etc. Simply no answer to that question.

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Ah thats ok. I know its a 'piece of string' kind of question.

I am really looking forward to starting classes but very nervous all the same!

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Please don't let those worries hold you back, skyrocket. I started ballet in January at the age of 44 and the weight of -- NEVER MIND! I'm not the oldest in my beginner class, and I'm not the largest. Honestly, we're all so busy concentrating on what we're doing that there's little time to examine the other students for "flaws." I barely notice there's anyone else in the class, but if I do, I can see that some of those slender young things can't move to the music or point their feet as well as I do! (It's not a competitive bunch at all, though. We have a lot of fun chatting before and after class and nobody's worried about who's best or youngest or fittest.)


I hope you go ahead and have a really great time. You're bound to find there are aspects of ballet you're good at and other areas that need work, just like everyone else.

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I am 44 as well and just came back to ballet in September (43 then). I had taken some ballet and other dance classes in my late 20s.


I am not thin and most of the women in my classes are thinner than me although there are a couple who are bigger than me. It doesn't matter in our classes. The ages also range from twenties through sixties. There are quite a few women older than me taking classes and some are quite good too. If you have a teacher or are in a studio that believes ballet is for everyone regardless of age or size you will not have any problems. Fortunately, many studios who have classes for adults maintain this view otherwise they would not have any students! Adults want to enjoy themselves and many take it seriously. We do not want to be offended.I would not attend any class that made me feel bad about my age or body size. I have better to do with my time and money.

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No worries on age or weight, just focus on pointing your feet and your port de bras! Oh, and check with your teacher to see what attire is required and what is optional, and dress in a manner that allows you to move freely and keeps you comfortable - enjoy! :)

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Welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers, Skyrocket. Great that you found us.


And as everyone else has said, no you're not too old! Indeed, at your age you'd be one of the youngest dancers in one class I go to. It can be frustrating at first, starting to get your body and mind to think ballet, because the alignment and movements that will become second nature to you, can sometimes feel strange at first. But one of the things you'll notice as a an adult beginner is that by the end of your first year of study (if you stick to classes slow & steady) you'll have made tangible progress in getting the basics into your body. It can be very satisfying to look back after a year's study to see how far you've come.


That said, ballet is a slow process of learning, and we all need many repetitions to get the muscle memory into our bodies. I find, however, that the need in class to concentrate on the details in the moment, is a wonderful antidote to some of the stresses and demands in the rest of my life. You simply can't think about anything else except what your body is doing right now!

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Skyrocket, I just wanted to tell you that I LOVE your name, and I admire you for taking up ballet as an adult. I have a lot of admiration for all those who take up ballet as adults! Just wanted to add my encouragement!

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Skyrocket - one can never be too old! I took a few years here and there when I was younger, and I took it back up in earnest at 30 (I'll be 32 in 5 months). Both at my first school, which closed, and at my current school, I am one of the younger adults there. There are plenty of people in their 40's and even 50's I think, joining all the time, and there are people of all body types. You will not regret it! :D

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A very warm welcome to you, Skyrocket and believe it or not you have cleared perhaps the biggest hurdle to beginning ballet as an adult. Making the actual decision to go and do this and the heck with the naysayers is very empowering and puts you in the right mindset to start learning.


I also began ballet in January and at the advanced age of 53! It has been quite a journey, a slow one, a frustrating one, but I'm hoping, ultimately a satisfying one. There are minute little victories scattered here and there when as they say, the penny drops and the mind finally grasps what the teacher is asking for. The body perhaps will co-operate, perhaps not but once it's in the brain I find it is in there and retrievable for the time when it is ready.


Best of luck and keep us posted on your progress.

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Thank you so much everyone for your wonderful replies!!

Its great to have found a place full of lovely encouraging people!! (I wanted to say ladies but there might be some gents on here too!)

I start next week so will let you know what my first class is like!

For the lady who said she loved my name - its actually my horses name :D I did want to call my daughter Sky when she was born but decided it wasnt good form to name your daughter after your horse! :wink:


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I agree with many of the statements already posted, congratulations on making the decision to start ballet! I'd suggest spending a little time finding dancewear you can be comfortable in (fit-wise and modesty-wise) that satisfies any dress code you may have, then forget about what you look like to the other dancers. They will all be concentrating too hard on themselves to notice your figure anyways. And don't worry if you see dancers who appear to be incredibly fit/advanced in your class. If you look hard enough at anyone you will see they have their own struggles, which may be very different from yours.


From my experience one of the hardest things about learning ballet is fighting the urge to give up or stop during the exercises/combinations when you start getting confused. It's important that you push yourself to keep going no matter what, even if you don't know what you're supposed to be doing. (Provided you're not injuring yourself.) It's more of a mental thing but will help you later on. But the great thing about the beginning is progress tends to be quicker at first, with regular classes you should expect to see some improvement fairly soon! Forgive yourself for your mistakes, and pat yourself on the back for the small victories. Good luck to you!

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