More and more adults all over the world are joining adult ballet classes, and the reasons are infinite. Whether is health, exercise, brain training, artistic development, trying to lose stage-fear or just having fun and meeting people, they’re becoming unstoppable. If you’re thinking about heading a studio and start ballet lessons but there’s still some questions in your head, don’t worry, we’re here for you. Here are some tips for your classes if you’re an absolute beginner so you can leave your fears behind!
You probably think about leotards and pink puffy skirts when you hear the word “ballet”, but you don’t even need tights to be in a dancing class. If you’re afraid of how you might look on your practices, don’t worry: you’re not required to dress like if you’re about to hit the stage for the next The Nutcracker season. Most adult-dance programs are really flexible with dress codes, so leggings and a T-shirt should me more than enough. Just remember you will need comfortable and flexible clothes that don’t get in the way of your movement, and if you can see your whole body and check your alignments, even better. From sweats and tank tops to yoga clothes or even leotards (to live the fantasy), just make sure you’re clothing makes it easier, not harder.
Footwear is really important for ballet classes, and since you’ll be using your feet the whole time and is a really demanding practice, you need them to be comfortable and safe. A shoe that hurts in the store is gonna hurt in class, so don’t be afraid to size it up or even get it costume-made, because a shoe that fits like a glove is gonna be your best friend for a long time. Pointe shoes come after, so don’t worry about them. Some studios allow people to take the class in socks, but usually you will be required to use flat ballet shoes for beginners. Avoid buying them online and ask in your studio about what brands or fabrics they recommend because it might change according to the floor they use or the rules they have.
Dancing is really strict, so you always have to be on time for the class, but “on time” for dancers means “early”. Rushing into your class will interrupt the process, is really rude, is disrespectful with ballet etiquettes and it will leave you with no chances of choosing your spot at the barre. Beginners usually should take the middle-area spots so they can see what other are doing and can be easily guided by the instructor.
If you feel lost on your first classes, congratulations: you need them and you’re right where you need to be! Is completely normal to have the sensation everybody else is doing better than you do, and maybe you’re right, but that doesn’t mean you’re doing something wrong and you should leave ballet forever. Ballet can look effortless, but is one of the hardest disciplines there is, so be kind with yourself and enjoy it. Practice will make you a master, and even if you feel stuck remember is just a step further to own your techniques.