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Advice needed. I want to be a dancer but...


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I'm 18, slightly overweight, and not flexible... but I desperately want to dance.

I danced from about age 5 to age 12. Then, for some reason, I stopped. I regret it so much. I wish I had kept with it. I did ballet, tap, and later on, jazz. Now, I'm 18 and I want to get back into it. But I'm not skinny like I used to be. I'm little, only 5' and half an inch. But I weight about (x)... And I'm also not flexible at all, mainly in my legs where it matters.


Can I still work my way back into being a dancer? I'm not terribly overweight, and I'm sure I would lose the weight by dancing once I started again, but it's the flexibility I'm worried about. Any advice? And I too old for it? And what are the most effective stretches to get my legs flexible, quickly?


Thanks : )

Edited by Mel Johnson
removed weight in accordance with board policy
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Welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers, rachelmz. :)


While nothing is impossible, the odds are not really in your favor at this point, in terms of becoming a professional dancer. However, that does not mean that you cannot dance! You can study whatever forms of dance you like, and enjoy it, and improve your overall physical condition through the exercise, if you do it often enough and regularly enough. One never knows where it will lead, but, if you it is something you love to do, then do it! :yes:


As far as leg flexiblity, that is what classes are for. You will learn stretches in class, but those kinds of stretches need to be done when you are thoroughly warmed up, which means after either the barre work or the whole class. Stretching for flexibility without proper warmup just leads to injury.

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Hi! And thank you very much for your advice and encouragement. I am glad you do not think it is too late for me! I do mainly just want to dance for the sake of enjoying to dance, not necessarily to ever go professional (not that I would mind that though, heh :) ). I was just afraid that if I signed up for a class, I would show up on the first day and people would look at me like 'how can you be a dancer?'...


But, would that be your suggestion then, to just sign up for a class?


Thanks again!

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I was just afraid that if I signed up for a class, I would show up on the first day and people would look at me like 'how can you be a dancer?'...


I've taken open adult classes to supplement pre-pro classes ever since I was 15 or so, and have seen some people much less likely to be considered "dancers" than yourself. Some people start when they are 70 years old. Some people are well over 200lbs.


Realistically, unless you were showing up for a summer intensive, exclusive pre-professional studio, or company/trainee audition, then no one will judge you just for coming to class. And trust me, 18 is actually one of the youngest ages you're likely to see in adult classes. I am *always* the youngest one in adult classes by at least 20 years, and I'm a few years older than you.


Yes, just go to a studio and ask if you can take a free evaluation class (most good studios do this, most bad studios don't do this, but some good studios also won't do it, so if you can't get one just pay for a single drop in to see if you like it, but it's always worthwhile to ask for a freebie.) If there are several studios in your area, try them all out. Just look for a beginner adult class, since you've danced before you shouldn't need an introductory class.

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