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I'm 13 and took a summer intensive this year at my ballet school and now I got informed I am skipping 2 levels. I'm very nervous because the level I am going into is hard looking and the girls all are breathtaking! I'll be taking classes 5 days a week for 2 hours. I am very nervous and I'm not sure if i'm good enough to take class with the older girls who are amazing. I'm not sure what to do. I'm really happy but really scared at the same time. My devolpes are slightly higher than 90 degrees but the other girl's are a lot higher than mine. How do you improve your extensions/devlopes. Also, is there any advice at all on what I should do about me skipping those levels and my nervousness? Some other girls in the lower levels or the one I used to be in doubt that I should be in the level I recently got placed in... it makes my self-esteem really low I guess. I started ballet at 11 but took some ballet classes for fun when I was 3-5 years old. I had to work super hard to catch up with my age group but now I'm going to be one of the youngest in my class. I am afraid my teachers will be frusterated and angry with me if I can not do something correctly :) what should I do?

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Also, My mother said the director of the school probably saw potential in me and that is why she put me in such a high level... but what if I don't have what it takes or I'm just too slow to understand the hard combinations and everything.

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  • Administrators

Masha, it sounds like you are doing very well for such a short time in training. I do wonder, though, about being on pointe before you had even completed two years, much less three.


Moving up is a good thing, and shows that your teachers do think you are doing well. However, if you do not have the confidence to deal with that big a move, why don't you talk to them about moving only one level up? Maybe when you talk to them you could also have them explain why you are moving up so far so quickly. If you know the reasons, and agree with them, then that should make the confidence factor a lot easier. But they do need to know that you do not feel confident about it right now.


As for extension, first of all, stop the comparisons, and also stop listening to other students. If you have good extension now, it will get better in the next couple of years as you mature and get stronger. I do not expect most 13 year olds to have great developpés yet, because they usually do not have the strength, even if they have the flexibility. :)

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Thank you so very much!! I will talk to my teacher about levels and moving up. Thank you for all the advice! I am on pointe and I have heard the you need to have had at least 3 years of ballet technique to go en pointe. But the teacher for pointe at my school said my feet are developed enough for pointe. When I started pointe I had only one pointe class a week. During this years summer intensive I did pointe monday-friday and I love pointe a lot so I would practice between classes and doing exercises at home. The director taught us pointe during the summer intensive and she was the one who moved me up so much. What could happen to my feet if I was not ready for pointe? Would I be able to tell now that I am not ready? I don't want to do pointe if I am not ready and if it will injure my bones :)

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  • Administrators

You are not too young, Masha, but it's just that normally one does not reach the level of technique necessary for pointe in such a short time. But, perhaps you are an exception. :) If you are happy with your teachers and your school, then you need to trust them to do what is right for you.

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