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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Balancing Mental Health with Training


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(before I start, I should say that while this is me asking for advice, I think this is also just a good discussion to have in general) So, background information: I'm a late starter hoping for a professional career.  I began at 12 and am now around 13-14 (for safety reasons I don't feel comfortable posting my exact age).  My first year I did one class a week at a recreational studio, this year I began two classes a week in Level 2 (of 5) at a pretty good pre-pro school, and in January, second semester, I was moved up to Level 3, 3 classes per week.  I'm just on the cusp of intermediate level, not quite on pointe yet but hopefully soon.

Before the quarantine, I was very excited to be getting a higher level of training.  However, due to COVID-19 I've been dealing with a lot of mental health problems, particularly anxiety.  I'm also dealing with a major technique issue that wasn't a problem in Level 2, but has become one as I progress into more advanced technique.  I don't think I will be able to fix it without at least a few private lessons.  These combined factors have made it very hard to motivate myself to go to classes.  I knew going into this that it was a great opportunity to catch up a bit more, as more classes and more time is available to me now.  However, it's been very difficult to take class.  Instead, I've vamped up my cross-training, doing a full workout at least 6 times a week.

My question is, do you think this is acceptable training wise?  How are other dancers coping?  Do you think companies will expect slightly less technique (or older auditioners) in the coming years, or will standards remain as they always have been?  When I say this I mean of pre-professional dancers who were still training during the pandemic, not of pros who are already in companies.

Anyways, those are my thoughts.  I hope everyone is doing well.

Edit: I meant to post this in cross talk, but it accidentally ended up here.  If it needs to be moved please feel free.

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OldSoulDancer, I am glad you raised the subject because I don't think there is anyone here who is not suffering mentally in some way with all of this. Kids- please feel free to share your stories here....... this is hard enough on adults, and I believe that you all need a place to share what you are experiencing.

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