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Ballet Talk for Dancers
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paxaman0

First Class!

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paxaman0

So I finally manned up and took my first ballet class! I am taking private lessons with my teacher who seems fantastic. In just a short, half-hour session we worked on Plie's, Tendu's and stretching as well as working the barre.

 

This was my first experience ever with ballet and it was a lot of fun! Apparently I'm a lot more flexible on my left side than my right side, and I'm not totally symetrical either. My left shoulder is taller than my right (barely noticeable) for some strange reason.

 

I really enjoy though how my teacher wants me to wear traditional dance form i.e. (white t-shirt, black tights, dance belt etc.) The only thing I have to purchase is the slippers. What would you reccommend in a good pair of slippers? Is comfort the only thing that matters? I assume I should try plie'ing in them first or something to get a feel for them?

 

Anyway, thanks for having this board up. Without it, I wouldn't ever have even started ballet probably. Next session is on Saturday, maybe for an hour, so we'll see how things goes!

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Willimus

Congrats! You want to be sure the slipper fits right. I'm not sure where you are located, but it would be best if there was a store in your area that sells slippers made by multiple manufacturers and has a sales staff that can guide you. After you study for a while you will learn what you like, how it should fit and what works for you, but some guidance at the beginning would probably be best.

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paxaman0

Thanks Willimus, that's exactly what I did do today when I bought my slippers! They are very comfortable, the only frustrating thing is that I didn't know you have to sow the elastics on the shoes, and since I don't know how to sue I'm going to have to go to a costume lady to get help with those. >.<

 

Also, kind of embarrassing question here; I bought a Capezio dance shirt, and when I walked out with it the lady at the counter said it fit me perfectly, but it feels a little odd (sorry for the graphic description but I can see my nipples sometimes) or is that just normal for a Capezio t-shirt? Sorry about the questions, I just don't want to look dorky before my second lesson next Monday.

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leopard dancer

Congrats and welcome to ballet! Privates are fun as you can concentrate with the teacher on specific areas to work and improve your technique. I do love the group classes with the ladies also.

 

I tried it all when I started when it came to what I wore to class when I started classes. I finally decided on the tights and ballet shoes as well. I personally started with leather shoes. When I went and took classes at a new local ballet school, I switched to canvass which were a lot more comfortable. My feet were closer to the floor, but when I dance, I can't tell. I could not at first sew the elastics on either. I was lucky the director of the ballet school offered to sew them on for me as she was also my teacher. Like what was said, you learn your preferences in shoes and other dancewear like tights, dance belts, and shirts once you have more classes under your belt.

 

 

 

 

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AndrewUK

I shouldn't worry about the t-shirt, I use Wear Moi, and they so same , just fitting and material I guess

 

Congrats also starting ballet, I think you will find the more you do the more you want to do and count the clock down to the next class !

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Willimus

Keep us posted as to how it is going

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paxaman0

Yah it's not going bad, I'm doing alright....I struggled a little bit my second class, I found out I have a really hard time dancing without my hearing aids.

 

I'm curious though, I'm 5' 4" and just started dancing, am I too short to have a career? I know sometimes it can be easier for us men to get parts because their are so few of us.

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GTLS Designs

paxaman0 - would you mind noting how old you are? Just to give us a little perspective as to your ballet journey....

 

Having just started ballet classes in early February, I think it is a bit early to be focus on a ballet career. Right now your first focus should be on the ballet fundamentals - positions, postures, and coordination (just to name a few). Things will progress from there and you will get a better idea of what ballet has in store for you.

As for height, I have danced with men who were close to 5'4" and they had very productive careers. With that said, they were also virtuosic dancers (lots of turns, big jumps, and full of dynamic movement) since pas de deux work was not always readily available (the female would need to be around 5').

 

Outside of the world of ballet, modern dancers come of all shapes, sizes, and ages. Many modern dancers have a strong ballet base and often take ballet classes to supplement their training. As you continue your path in ballet, maybe you could take some modern classes down the road for additional options?

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paxaman0

Yah, sorry about not stating that at the beginning haha. I'm 22 years old right now so I'm in the prime of my life! Fair enough, I've been working on my coordination skills as well as my posture for sure, so that is something to keep at. My plie's right now are pretty weak lol, I can only go down a few inches which makes me feel like I really suck at this.

 

I'm not really interested so much in other types of dance right now, I just really found a connection with ballet. I like how calming it is to do it, it seems like not much else matters when I dance as well as the different types of moves that you perform in ballet that are unique to that form.

 

 

Not only that, but also I have had some knee problems in the past and ballet seems to be helping me deal with that. So that's very exciting!

Edited by GTLS Designs
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coffeeguy

Congrats paxaman0! Wonderful to do ballet isn't it? :) I can absolutely agree that ballet is very calming!

 

If you're unsure which size slippers you need and you buy them on-line, measure the length of your foot and ask the store to make a choice based on that length. I just bought a pair of Dancer (Excel) split sole slippers which are great (and cheap!), unfortunately one of the straps already came loose (after one month of use!). What brand did you buy?

 

And the t-shirts are often fairly tight fitting, so no problem!

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paxaman0

@coffeeguy

 

I bought a pair of sanshas. :D They are very comfortable and quite nice, especially for sliding motions and whatnot.

 

I just started practicing third position today. Need to remember to keep those hips straight while I move that foot back! Really enjoying dancing, once my brain gets into it I seem to be doing really well. As far as washing clothes, can I just use any old detergent like soapy detergent (lemon-scented) lol!

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coffeeguy

You mean keeping hips straight while doing tendus backwards? Still difficult for me too haha! Also keeping both knees stretched while doing a ronde de jambe...

 

I machine wash my tights on cold setting with just a bit of detergent. I also use a net to put them in to keep them from tearing.

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