Both younger and adult beginners dream that they can learn to dance ballet. They picture the tidy look of the black leotard, the pink tights and the satin pointe shoes. Hip hop, modern and ballroom dancers learn ballet technique to build strength and avoid injury. And some adults who start late work hard to eventually start pointe. Needing to understand basic classical ballet, is what they all have in common.
If you want to learn to dance ballet, start with finding a reputable dance studio. Many dance academies will allow you watch a class if you like.
Hip hop, contemporary dance classes, and ballroom dancing and many more forms of dance are supported by basic classical ballet technique.
The correct use of your posture, turn out and learning correct placement will help you to build strength and avoid dance injuries.
Even football players learn ballet to prevent sports injuries!
Simple ballet wear is preferred by teachers because they can see how you use your muscles (or not), and they can easily see how your joints are aligned. The visual result is important in ballet, but the proper technique is also related to preventing injuries.
The freer forms of dance depend on good technique as much or more than ballet, because dancers are asked to do more innovative and untested movements, repeatedly, in modern choreography. The risk of strain and sprain are less predictable.
If you are an adult ballet beginner, have a couple of soft ice packs in the freezer! You will feel soreness and stiffness the day after your ballet class. Ice is soothing to your muscles, a drug free solution to the results of your exertion. Unless the ice pack is fabric covered, be careful not to put it on bare skin.
There are specific foot muscle exercises, which will move you toward dancing in pointe shoes safely. Understanding your foot type, what the intrinsic foot muscles are, and finding out about the flexibility of your ankle and foot joints is important.
Also realize that any ballet move you do that is a little awkward will seem much more so on pointe, and must be corrected before you get into toe shoes.
If you have time to study a little anatomy and movement mechanics you'll understand why some things are easier for you than others. Go to The Body Series for excellent guides on movement anatomy and the benefits of stretching.
If you want to learn to dance ballet, start where you are. Get the best start possible with the dancer's guide to learn to do ballet and get into pointe shoes.