Ballet is an obvious one for me to include in this ‘staying fit’ series, and is considerably more graceful than my last activity too! I’ve been at the same dance school since before I can remember. After almost 14 years with the same teachers and same group of girls it’s impossible to imagine life without weekly dancing for me. My teachers Ann Louise and Laura really do feel like my aunties, and our Thursday nights are honestly some of the funniest times ever. I’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve been killing ourselves laughing and tried pulling it together to carry on dancing!
Fitness-wise, I definitely include ballet in my workout ‘routine’. It’s well known fact that dancing most definitely is a sport as well as an art. Only takes one look at a professional dancer’s legs to figure that one out. Obviously I’m nowhere remotely near that level, but I can agree that nothing works your bum quite like a grands battements and battements en cloche exercise 6 times through. AnnLouise does like to push us. Also, there’s a hell of a lot of leaping and jumping involved so it’s a great cardio sesh too, and I can safely say we all look less than graceful when we’re red faced and puffing afterwards. Good posture is drummed into us from pre-primary all the way through, which I’m now thankful for!
What differentiates dance from other workouts is the trying to look good whilst doing it: nobody really cares if your legs are properly turned out or if your eyes are following your hands in the gym, but trying your best to be aware of what every part of your body looks like is a challenge in itself. During any other workout it’s easy for your mind to be stuck on ‘OMG this hurts so much’ and struggle to push your way through, but I usually find it’s only afterwards that you actually realise quite how tiring dancing is. Concentrating on getting moves right and looking half decent whilst you’re at it is actually a distraction from the fitness element, so it can be a workout you don’t even realise you’re doing, woohoo!
I’ve actually done tap and modern for equally as long but ballet is by far the prettiest. For our next show (which will also be my last wahhhh) we’ve started a Les Mis medley that I am absolutely loving so far, and in black tutus it should look quite impressive. I remember watching the ‘big girls’ in their tutus when I was in the younger grades, and I’m sure they seemed much older than I feel now haha. Always the case isn’t it?
Perks of being one of the ‘big girls': choosing our own black leotards haha. After years of all wearing the same plain pale pink, then lilac, then navy, we’re all slightly too excited to pick our own strappy crisscross backless ones. Mine’s from Bloch and my tights are Primark – they’re not exactly traditional ballet ones being patterned black and all but hey ho.
How perfect is this light in the studio? After helping out with the little ones’ classes on Saturday morning we hung about for a play around in an empty room, and unsurprisingly the full length windows and mirrors on every wall work in the favour of photographs. Even the floor is slightly reflective so it’s pretty much a dream location.
Anyway, I should really get started on the ton of maths and physics homework I have due for tomorrow, so that’s enough for now! Thanks for stopping by!
p.s. If any of you are ballet dancers yourselves and are critiquing my position, then please be nice with any constructive criticism! I don’t pretend to be any expert.