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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Strength exercises


inbetween2

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I was told today that my daughter needs to try and strengthen her feet. They said her feet are weak because when they push her to point her feet go all the way down easy however she can't hold that position (excuse me not the right wording, new to all this) Anyway just wondering what type of exercises would help her strengthen that. They also said that it is quite common since she is only new so hasn't had a chance to devlop it. Any advice would be great

 

PS sorry about the spelling, it is late here and I don't know how to fix it.

Edited by inbetween2
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Inbetween2, when a child is new to ballet it will take time and correct training to strengthen her feet. Ballet itself will do that. All of the barre exercises are designed to both strengthen and increase flexibility in the feet, over time. Some children are naturally stronger than others and may be able to do some things sooner, but it still, at this age and a beginning student, it needs to be done with correct training which teaches her HOW to point and which muscles in the body are used to do this. The strength of her core muscles and leg muscles must also develop, as pointing the feet is not just about the feet. If she is not a strong child, and is old enough, some Pilates one on one training should be able to help, but find a Pilates teacher who is/was a dancer. How old is your DD, when did she start ballet, and how many classes a week does she have? Is it a serious ballet school?

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Thanks for that. My daughter has only just turned 9 and has only just started ballet end of last year. She is very strong everywhere else meaning her core strength is very good I guess that is from

All the gym she has done, but she has had to work very hard at it as it as she isn't naturally strong. She seems to be more flexible naturally. I thought that would have come from years of dance but when she said that she needed to strengthen I wasn't sure on what to do. The teacher did give us some ideas like walking on her tip toes

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No No NO!!! That is not the way you teach a child ballet or strengthening! Walking around on her toes is not a good thing to do, and can cause stress in various areas. She will work on half pointe in classes, but it is not something one is to do outside of classes at 9 years old and a beginning student! Or any age, really. If she is naturally flexibible, that is great. Strength will come with training. IF it's good training. I'm afraid that I would have some serious questions about that at this time.

 

Nine years olds are not expected to be strong in their first year of ballet, and I would not tell a child that age to work on strengthening. Not even older and more trained students should be told that without teaching them EXACTLY what and how to do it.

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Oh thank you so much! I woul hate to Hurt my child. This is the problem when you don't know anything about dance lol. I will just tell her not to worry it will come with time.

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Inbetween, I hope you will also consider looking at other schools, if you can. From the things you said I can't be convinced that she is with a really good teacher. I don't know that, but I really have a feeling that something is not quite right there.

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Yeh I am a little confused about the whole thiing really. This school was meant to be one of the best in the area. So now I have no idea. I don't understand why they would tell us to do that. I am thinking maybe I got the whole thing wrong, but I don't think so. She did say to my daughter and myself to walk around on the tip toes, she also said to pick things up with the toes.

 

My daughter loves all styles of dance but ballet is becoming one of her favourites.

Edited by inbetween2
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Picking up pencils with the toes is fine.

 

I suggest you do some watching of her classes and other classes. Have you seen the advanced dancers at this school? Do they have a record of turning out dancers who continue on in major programs and eventually companies? I think, where you are, that most dancers are trained slowly in the early years, with fewer classes and hours of training than here in the States. But then they move on to the company schools if they have the potential for a career. How much ballet is she getting right now, and does that schedule increase as she gets older?

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I think they have a couple of people at the Australian ballet and they have two young ones that are doing something with the Australian ballet. So not that Many but have had some. I guess this dance place does all genres of

Dance not just ballet.

My daughter is only doing grade 2 ATM so doing 2 45 min lessons a week and a half hr private because they have exams coming up. It was in the private that they said this. We don't get to watch the classes which is common over here.

 

I was thinking about taking her to a workshop that the Australian ballet are doing in may. Thought it might be good experience for her.

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And for you. Watch as much as you can and ask questions if you can. You need to find out if she is getting decent training.

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If her training is up to par with what they expect from her age and amount of training.

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What should she be doing in regards to time for her age? Because all 9 year olds are doing the same at this school?

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I can't answer that, inbetween. I don't know her school, and I don't know the teachers. That is why I am saying that you need to ask the professionals at the Australian Ballet School.

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