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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Training Too Much?


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I'm a 15 year old male, currently taking 20 hours of class a week (men's class, mixed technique, contemporary, jazz, pilates + yoga) + 15 hours rehearsal/yagp coaching. I'm also in the athletic training program at my high school, which is geared toward serious student athletes. There's a lot of plyometrics, cardio, bodyweight exercises, etc. with some weight training, but not enough to make me bulky. 

Is this too much? The class at my school is an hour long, 5 days/wk. I also start every day with 30 min of pilates on my own. 

I started quite late (12) so of course I need to work harder to stay on top of everything. Burnout has never been an issue for me, I've never entered a class feeling tired or anything negative. Just excited to learn & work hard. Sometimes it's difficult to stay on top of schoolwork, but I've never let my grade slip. 

However, I've read a lot of stories, here and elsewhere, about kids who did burnout, and as a result, quit dancing... I know that I have the hunger to learn, + energy... But should I cut back before I head down the wrong path? :shrug:

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balletgoober it is wonderful to such an enthusiast new member, but I must say the number of hours one studies dance is not as important as the quality of the teaching and the way a student approaches work. The work must be done correctly.

That being said, our residential students carry a physical schedule of 5 to 6 hours a day of physical dance classes 5 days a week with an extra 1.5 hrs. to 3 hrs. on Saturdays. Those classes include ballet technique, pointe, variations, partnering, character, jazz, modern and spanish dance. There is one 1 hour 45 minute ballet technique class 5 days a week followed by a 45 min to an hour class of either pointe, variations, men's work or partnering. They then have 2.5 hours of repetoire rehearsals daily. They also study music, mordern or jazz or pilates twice a week for an 1.50 hours. Saturdays is the day for charcter dance and character repetoire. Depending upon level, it could be anywhere from 1.5 hours to 3 hours. Our school provides a pilates reformer that they use as needed on their own time.

Our school is a residential ballet high school program allowing the students many hours of professional training. When I do the math, it seems they have anywhere from 30 to 33 hours of mandatory physical dance classes in total depending on the level of the student. It is a quite a heavy load an must be monitored by the dance faculty to make sure no one is doing too much work for their physical abilities. Balance is important because over training can indeed lead to burn out, but also injury.

I hope this has been helpful. Just love your enthusiasm!😊

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Thank you for taking the time to answer my question! Yes without a doubt, quality > quantity.. I always work my hardest in all of my classes & make sure that i’m recovering quality training first and foremost. However i’m considering dropping a few hours, because as you said, balance is important! I appreciate your feedback & words. :lol:


Edited by ascballerina
Removed quote of post directly above
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balletgoober, have you discussed your thoughts with a teacher you trust? It may be best to include your teacher is your thought process.

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We have a student-teacher meeting before the beginning of the year, so I will bring it up then :yes:

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Just a reminder there is no need to quote the post directly above yours!  I fixed it for you this time. B)

Please do keep us updated on the outcome of your meeting!

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  • 5 months later...

I just realized that I never posted an update, and i’ve been very busy so haven’t had very much time to post on this forum.

I did end up cutting back a few hours, now training 30 hours a week, and my preformance in class and rehearsals has improved. 

I appreciate everybody’s feedback and advice on this situation. 

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Good tp hear from you balletgoober. We wish you continued success in your journey toward a professional career. Keep up the good work.😉

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Thank you vrsfanatic. I am very grateful for all of your advice and wisdom. :)

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