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Why can’t I do pirouettes on pointe?

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I am 13 years old and have been dancing for 10 years. I take three classes a week with each day ranging from 2:30-3:30 hours of dancing. I have been on pointe for almost two years and still have trouble doing pirouettes. This is just so frustrating for me because I am a great turner on flat shoes and can easily do 2-3 turns on the regular. I am a left turner, I don’t know if this matters at all and I can’t do pirouettes on pointe. I am currently wearing gaynor minden shoes that I have had professionally fitted for my feet. When I do pirouettes on pointe I tend to try to go to passé and then attempt to turn. This may because I am scared. I can do a single pirouette on the left sometimes a double, but my right is just horrible.


Please help me as I am going to join or studios junior company soon, and even though I practice everyday I still cannot get the hang of it.


thank you!

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Victoria Leigh

Welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers, Althea! You will find a whole lot of information on pirouettes here in this Young Dancer forum. :)

 We cannot really diagnose the problem without seeing what you are doing, knowing your training, and more about how you have been taught to turn. There are numerous reasons that things can be problematic, including placement in the preparation, your relevé strength on pointe and placement in the turning position, where your movement motivation is originating, etc., etc., etc.  Has your teacher worked with you specifically on these issues? Do you have an understand of where the energy and motivation for the movement begins?  Try reading the topics here on turns, and you might be able to discover it yourself from the responses from our faculty of professional teacher's responses. Or, have tried having a private lesson with one of your teachers? Let us know how it is going, and if you still have the problem, you could post a photo of you in the preparation and another in the relevé retiré position but not turning. The photos would need to be posted in an album somewhere that I could access, and then you send me a link via Contact US, which comes only to me. :) 

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