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ballet academy
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injury prevention
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Ballet Injury Prevention – Before You Dance In Ballet Toe Shoes
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Ballet injuries can be prevented in most cases. The most important factor is to learn and practice correct classical technique. Choosing the best ballet academy that you can find, is how you start.

It is very easy now to find the web sites of your local dance studios and find out who is teaching, what their credentials are, and how long they have been teaching ballet or other dance styles. While degrees and teaching certifications do not guarantee the teaching quality, they are excellent guides.

A ballet studio environment is important. Firstly, the dance floor of a studio is key. Most studios have sprung floors with an excellent surface for ballet injury prevention. A sprung floor is one that is built to allow a degree of give, as opposed to a floor built directly onto cement.

Besides the teacher and the environment, the responsibility rests with each student. Learning with concentration and careful practice will develop strength properly in your body, as well as increase your powers of mental ability to work well even if you are a bit tired, distracted, or some other condition.

Lisa Howell is one dance writer who states very clearly that you, the dancer dreaming of a perfect pointe ballet expertise, must have reached a level of maturity before you are ready to dance in ballet toe shoes. I am so glad that she brought this factor into her list of requirements for a student to fulfill before training in pointe shoes.

Certainly technical factors are key, such as:

  • ballet turnout being strong in the correct muscles, the rotator muscles
  • sufficient ankle flexibility to rise onto the platform of a pointe shoe
  • strong ankle muscles that can accommodate the constant adjustment for balancing
  • strong core muscles that support your ballet posture
  • a correct demi plie, being able to relax the calf muscles for depth
  • sufficient strength if your ankle and foot joints are hyper-mobile, or extra flexible

Ballet students know there are a “million” more technical details to remember, that's what it feels like. Yet the items mentioned above are key, and can be practiced easily at home on days that you do not have a ballet class.

Learning how to buy pointe shoes and learning about pointe shoe brands fuels those precious dreams of getting into ballet toe shoes. The high numbers of dancers who avidly read and post on large dance forums express this.

Mostly, however, the discussion of ballet injury treatment is more common than the issue of preventing dance injuries. Common to all athletes, dancers must:

  • be sufficiently warmed up to practice
  • be well fed with highly nutritional food, the best lean proteins included
  • be well slept
  • learn stress management as they mature and get more involved with ballet
  • be dedicated, not obsessed or perfectionistic
  • be able to critique but not criticize themselves in front of the unforgiving mirror
  • understand their body type, how to work with it, not against it

I have taught many children who were born pros. They read and practiced everything they could get on how to dance in ballet toe shoes and get strong. This included basic anatomy. Understanding your joints and muscles gives you an extra advantage to perhaps be the best in your class.

Life can get overwhelming for young ballet dancers as they learn to balance their training workload with school and family demands. But I hope that ballet continues to make you love life more. Rest when you need to, so you can excel in your ballet classes and always be aware of ballet injury prevention.

Street Talk

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