A common misconception about ballet is that it’s strictly for younglings. Almost all of the best ballet dancers in the world started training from an early age, and a huge chunk of their childhoods was spent on honing their craft to perfection.
There’s also the fact that ballet is an activity that requires a lot of flexibility which is something that young people have a lot of.
If you’re an adult who still wishes to take up ballet but is apprehensive that you’ll be the only grownup in your class, fret not. Ballet is actually something that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. There are adult classes that you can enroll in. Yes, kids might have the edge when it comes to flexibility, but adults learn faster- the mature brain is able to grasp concepts that children might take years to understand completely. Even if you don’t have a background in dance, you can get the basics down in no time.
Still not convinced? Here are some of the benefits that you, as an adult learner, will be able to gain through ballet training:
Improves Your Posture
Good posture can contribute a lot to your health. Most of the back pain that people who live sedentary lives experience can be attributed to poor posture.
Having a neutral posture (with hips squared and parallel on both sides, straightened spine) is essential to ballet. Since you’ll be working with this posture for most of the time you’re doing ballet, you’ll eventually get used to it so much that you’ll start doing it even when you’re outside the studio.
Just look at Audrey Hepburn. The actress was trained professionally in a ballet conservatory, and her training was really evident in the way she carried herself in front of the camera.
Makes You Fit
Though they are vastly different activities, the amount of training that goes into ballet and football are almost the same. You will sweat. A lot. Flexibility is not the only thing you need to work on. You would also have to improve your cardio and core strength. Every inch of muscle in your body will be actively engaged in the movement. This is the reason why ballet dancers have very well-toned bodies; serious ballet students would often find themselves a few pounds lighter after a few months of ballet training.
Makes You More Cultured
Hundred years of history shaped the way ballet is today. It is more than just dance and movement, it is art – a form of creative expression. It’s not just your physical side that will be exercised, but your creative side too.
Soon enough, you will become obsessed with ballet as an art form. You will go out of your way to watch performances. You will buy books about ballet and its history. You will listen to the music that ballet composers have produced. Overall, training in ballet will make you appreciate all of the artistry and musicality that goes into each step. You’ll become a more cultured, well-rounded person.
Exercises Your Brain Cells
A sedentary life leads to a sedentary mind. In ballet, your mind is actively engaging with your body and the music. You would need to use a lot of brain power to memorize the steps and make your body move the way you want it to. You would also be forced to make yourself move to the music and feel its rhythm.
There have been studies about the positive effect of classical music on brain activity. It is said to stimulate the production of alpha waves in the brain. Since ballet often uses classical music, just the act of listening to the music alone can make you “smarter” and make your mind healthier.
Gives You Confidence
Ballet is all about performance. If you started training as an adult, your chances of performing on a stage in front of an audience are less than what you would expect from someone who started ballet at an earlier stage. However, you are still expected “perform” for your classmates, teachers, and yourself.
This is a chance for you to overcome your shyness. As you gain more confidence in your movements and skill (not to mention the fact that you’ll become fitter as you train more), you’ll be able to harness some of this confidence in other aspects of your life too.
Written by: alexis712