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How Adult Beginners in Ballet Can Progress to Pointe Work

Most adult ballet beginners I talk to are motivated to add home practice to their dance class schedule. If you want to progress to pointe work, you can save time and money by learning exercises targeted to prepare the foot muscles for pointe. An added bonus to this focus is, that the same exercises enhance your balance and all your ballet footwork.

Exercises involving just the intrinsic (in the foot only) foot muscles do not require a ballet barre (or bar), a mirror, ballet wear, dance music, or any kind of workout equipment.

Furthermore, once you have learned these exercises properly, you can do them while you watch television, read, or engage in casual conversation.

Adding an exercise to determine and then improve your turnout requires enough floor space for the length of your body, and a small cushion or folded towel if you are very thin.

Practicing press ups on one leg in a cou de pied or retire position requires a kitchen counter or chair back for use as a barre.

Checking for a correct ballet position to practice in, is best done with your ballet teacher. However, if you have a full length mirror, you can also check at home, once you understand what is right for spinal posture, pelvic position, and leg positions.

Plan on adding ten to fifteen minutes a day for foot exercises to progress toward pointe work. While your feet get stronger, you will find a better push off in all your releves and jumps. Landing through the foot will become easier as well.

Some adult ballet beginners may never get to dance ballet in pointe shoes because of previous dance injuries, extremely inflexible ankle joints, or another reason. Yet, adding specific foot exercises to your routines will definitely help you progress toward pointe work and better foot work in general.

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