Friday, April 10, 2009

Going Back to Ballet Classes - Join the Adult Ballet Dancers!

Recently I've talked to older dancers who want to get back to ballet classes after five, ten and even 27 years! Good for them! Ballet is excellent fitness, excellent exercise, and if approached with patience by a healthy adult with experience, or an adult beginner, artistic fulfillment can be achieved too.

The most fun part of reading all the blogs/sites that I can find on the internet is that - WOW - I find blogs for example, written by a young adult returning to ballet classes and ending up going to The National Ballet School of Canada for older dancer classes, and I know her teacher Bob McCollum! Too much.

I actually used to teach Bob! At long-time defunct Ballet Ys. Go Bob!

But, back to you. If you're reading this because you want to be going back to ballet classes, and you're thinking "I'm too old"..."It's been too long..." "can I really be an adult ballet student"....

Yes you can. An adult beginner, yes. Why not?

An adult re-beginner - absolutely! With a safe, patient approach - letting go of how it USED to feel - plie, tendu, degage, battment, now.

That really is true. If you are beginning again, begin again. Do not reflect on the past UNLESS you can remember the exact feeling of strength, of power, of control. That is good to remember because guess what - your muscles remember too! They really do. So if you trained to the point where you could execute ballet technique with certainty and elegance, please remember, over and over again. This is good for your brain, and will translate to your muscles.

If you are an adult beginner, you have made an excellent choice for fitness and exercise. You cannot get a more refined routine of movement to practice. You may have a longing for artistic fulfillment. For many, Pilates (wonderful) or yoga is chosen. But some are born to dance ballet, whichever way possible, whenever.

I"m thinking Bob may agree with me, he certainly was.

If you are an adult beginner or re-beginner and need the nit-picky details of ballet technique, get it fromTHE BALLET BIBLE.


  1. Hi,

    I thought your post was really inspiring.

    What sometimes lets people down is the lack of availability of adult dance classes - or that they are fully subscribed !

    I would particularly like to learn all the different movements, because although I recognise some of them on stage, I can't imagine what they feel like to do, and I think that would enhance my experience of being in the audience.

    So I think that is another benefit of attending a ballet class - when you see the experts making it look like no effort at all - you can appreciate the 10, 15 years of hard, repetative work that has gone into making it look easy. Everyone says that the hardest part is making the effort look effortless and dance classes go some way to understanding how that feels.

  2. I am adult re-beginner. I just started two months ago and I love it! The moves have come back to me even though I was rusty in the beginning. My motive to dance again is for fitness, but also I have re-taken up figure skating (after skating as a teen) so ballet is excellent off ice training. My coach has noticed the improvement in my arm carriage, posture and extension. I don't know if pointe will be in my future but who knows when I'm tired of skating I can focus on that goal :)Right now I am enjoying the physical and mental benefits either way.