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Ballet Talk for Dancers

The Underwear Issue

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I know this is a...touchy...subject, so moderators feel free to delete should need be! At any rate, I am looking for some help.

We have a new teacher at our studio who demands we older girls (10+) do not wear underwear of any form in ballet class. This has, of course, brought up some issues. I rummaged through some old discussions in the parents' forums, but nothing recent, and I was just wondering what you all thought about our situation and how to deal with it. We are all here having a sleepover for the sole purpose of compelling this list of questions, so excuse me if this is really long!


Underwear Issue #1 - This is for my classmate; who is thin as a rail in absolutely ever part of her body except her bust. She wears a (specially ordered) 30 DD (yeah, we didn't know those were made either!!!) bra size, and a plain black, racer back sports bra underneath her leotard (she says the racer back gives her more support). But our teacher doesn't like it and said that beginning next week if my classmate wore the bra she would not be allowed to participate in class. There are a few reasons we (the dancers) believe this is a bad idea; 1) she'll be bouncing around the whole class, 2) leotards don't give her all that much coverage, 3) all that bouncing around would be painful, and 4) the boys say that it would make them uncomfortable (I, being gay, agree with them!).

Does anyone have any tips for how to deal with this? Are there certain leotards that give more support? or is there a way she/we could approach our teacher about this subject without seeming rude/offensive?


Underwear Issue #2 - We have asked our teacher already about this, but her (non)-answer was not at all helpful. No skirts, no shorts (which I understand), no undies! We have a young dancer (age 11) in our group who has started her period, and so for a week of classes every month needs to wear a pad. Unfortunately, her mother is completely against the idea of tampons until she hits at least 16, so she's at a bit of a loss for what to do in the time being. Would it be better for her to just wear discreet panties with a pad during that week and risk having to sit out on class, or should she have her mother speak to the teacher? What have others done in this situation?


Underwear Issue #3 - This one is mine, and probably the most touchy subject, but I know many people have this issue (a couple of the people watching me type, my mother, etc), so I thought it should be brought up. I have issues with my menstrual cycles, and therefore must always wear a panty liner, even when I am not dancing. This is for hygiene issues, as without one discharge will leak through all the layers of my clothing. It is rather disgusting actually :green::yucky:. Anyway, I have not yet found a way to get my liners to stick to my tights! They always roll up and become very uncomfortable (and visible...thank you for that lovely comment my lovely Peanut Gallery). Are there tricks to this? Or am I condemned to bucking the rules and wearing underwear my whole life?


Underwear Issue #4 - Okay, this is just a general question about the Underwear Issues from us isolated northerners...what the big deal? I mean, I get if there is a very visible panty line/you can see the underwear/etc..., but why would seamless/thong underwear that is not visible be banned? From what I've read, the main thing is hygiene, but when we asked someone's mum (who's a Nurse Practitioner) she said there isn't really an issue? The example she gave was marathon runners, nobody's ever told them they can't wear undies for hygiene reasons. Is there another reason its not commonplace? Just out of curiosity!


Anyway, I think that is all our questions...if you managed to read that whole spiel, good on ya! And thank you :grinning:.

Once again, if this is to touchy and subject or is in the wrong area, moderators feel free to delete/move it!!

Thanks so much everyone!


KJT and the team



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Clara 76

#1- your classmate is going to have to have her parent or guardian speak with the teacher. Breast tissue does need support, but perhaps there is a way to add support without having the straps show.

#2- Stick the pad to the tights. Wear tights that come all the way up to the natural waist- not the hips. It works and has been working for dancers since way before tampons were invented.

#3- See #2

#4- Underwear is not necessary. Tights have a protective fabric and underwear makes for fussy lines. You likely won't be wearing underwear under your tights, under your tutu, so might as well get used to it now!

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Okay, thanks Clara :) I'll pass this on!

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Just a comment on #4, once you get used to wearing no underwear, even the idea of wearing underwear becomes very strange! Trust me, it's much more comfortable without the extra layer :happy::)

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Lady Lavender

Hello! As for #1, you seem to have a strict dress code, but is there anyway she could wear a leotard that would cover a racer back bra? Like a racer back leotard or one of those mock turtleneck, zip-up leotards that don't have a hole in the back? You could also look into leotards with BraTek. I'm not sure how supportive and comfortable they would be for her specifically, but I know plenty of girls who have really loved them in the past.


And as for #4, its totally fine! You just have to get used to it. :happy: Just be sure to wash your tights regularly.

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I'm not really sure what the big deal is either but maybe its because it doesnt look nice? There are leotards with built in bras though. I just stick my pad to my tights but I have to stretch out my tights so when I pull it up it doesnt get all bumpy and start to show through.

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