After several years of training, many of our ballet dancers begin preparing for pointe work. Dancers must have a strong technical foundation, proper alignment, incredible balance and control, and foot and ankle strength to begin pointe work. We start our dancers in pre-pointe class where they learn about pointe work in more detail. In pre-pointe, dancers are given specific exercises to prepare them for pointe work. Our pre-pointe dancers usually earn their pointe shoes during the winter break and make a special trip together to go get their first pair of pointe shoes. It’s an exciting time, and they work so hard to finally earn those pointe shoes!
One of the lessons that our pointe teacher, Ms. Kassie, does with the pre-pointe dance students each year in the fall is a foot anatomy lesson. She has them draw on their feet various parts of the foot to help dancers learn about their alignment in greater detail. It’s important for the girls to see whether they are in correct alignment or in supination or pronation as going up on pointe with incorrect alignment is very dangerous.
After their “art” lesson, the students do various ballet movements to really see how their feet are working through the process. Here is a fun exercise to try at home. Stand with both feet flat on the ground. Now individually, try to lift just your big toe, then just your second toe, and so on. This is just one of the exercises our pre-pointe and pointe students do to gain strength and control in their feet.
Now that you have had a little look “behind the scenes”, stay tuned to see our annual pointe shoe fitting trip over the winter break where these girls earn their pointe shoes.
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- Providing quality dance training to the Leander, Cedar Park, and Liberty Hill area since 2004.