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FlowerPower

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  1. It's quite sad that fitness/athleticism isn't the preference - wouldn't it make for better dancers? ๐Ÿ˜•
  2. Hello! I'm new to this ballet business too - although I did 'train' as a young child, it was a good couple of decades ago and I remember about five instances of the whole experience. So I was effectively an almost complete beginner when I started about 3ish months ago. Let me describe my first "beginners class" session - the class started a bit late so we jumped straight into the fastest demonstration of tendus imaginable, the teacher explained posture as we were doing them, set moves known to experienced class members were done so I had no idea what was going on, centre work was a blur and half the time I couldn't see anything. I was also pooped physically/mentally by mid-session. If that's a recipe for not wanting to return, I don't know what is! ๐Ÿ˜ง However, I'm a stickler for 'if you really want it, try the brand new thing for at least 3 months before moving on'. Of course if there are more pressing things to do then that is understandable. The next session was much better: we warmed up nice and slowly, focused on posture and went through all the movements slowly on both sides before the music. I place myself near to people who I know are usually good at following the class so if I get lost I can figure out what I should be doing if the teacher is too far. If you don't know who these people are, ask the teacher to place you. I also started going to class three times a week - two with the first teacher and one with another. They have slightly different styles of teaching and their temp replacements were totally different too. I'd recommend to go for drop-in/taster sessions to try different teachers and figure out your learning style. You'll then be able to approach them for a private session if you want. I'm easily the first teacher's least technical and capable student (not an exaggeration - many students are from other dance and performance backgrounds or are more advanced). I've mentally/emotionally found it very hard to deal with being consistently not very good, particularly at keeping up in the centre as I struggle with recalling the sequences. Even with repeated exposure. I also felt super silly when doing the movement across the floor for a while. However, we're not the only ones who can't keep up - please don't worry that you can't. As a student had said to me 'just try to do something like the basic steps or move with the group, the rest will come later'. To keep going back, I've been counting each little victory and I fully recommend that to everyone. So far, my posture and technique have definitely improved, my turnout too. I understand hand movements to the point that it's a bit more instinctive (I still forget and hold my hand weirdly when totally focused on the feet!) and I can reach the second section of movements in the centre before completely zoning out (hurrah - I had posted a desperate 'I understand nothing' post a couple of months back about this). I've reached the point where I can now practice at home. The point of the spiel about my recent experiences is that if you really want to give it a shot, try different teachers, go at least twice a week (if you're financially able) or do a set absolute beginners course, and keep going back for at least a few months to get a feel for it before throwing it in. Good luck! ๐Ÿ˜€
  3. Possibly a combination of a lot of work (as going to class almost straight after), decreased fitness, and my current diet/exercise. I had put on several kilos from a couple of injuries at the beginning of the year and now being able to mostly exercise properly (swimming, outdoors, jumping around being silly etc) I can maintain a healthier diet - although it is currently aimed towards shifting the unnecessary weight which probably isn't helping the energy levels! I'll try out the banana before class. Have bought these - probably overkill to buy two, but my second-hand book has cool notes in them!
  4. Thank you guys for your reassurances and sharing of personal experience! It is super appreciated and a relief that I'm not a lost cause (well.. may yet be ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿคทโ€โ™€๏ธ). I think being surrounded mostly by people who know the movements or figure them out quickly has made me assume that I need to have figured them out or be able to keep up with the sequences too. Amusingly, I should know better as I take part in outdoor sports that require fairly decent levels of coordination and problem solving for even moderate difficulty and find myself reassuring beginners in the same ways that you guys kindly have with me!
  5. 'Morning, thank you for the replies and the welcome! Yes, I'm not in an absolute beginner's class but they are accepted - the range of students range from absolute beginner to persons wanting a general beginner session. The absolute beginners class schedule doesn't work well due to work and other commitments and I cannot take a specific set course for the same reason. I think the teacher will be okay with me keeping my arms in a set place for a bit or to simplify it - he's already specified it's okay not to follow all the arm movements while in the centre of the room away from the barre. We do work on the same sequences for most of the session and I usually opt for the simplified sequence where possible - I'll try to make it for two sessions in a week when I can to help with understanding/remembering the moves. The_Red_Shoes - I'll see if I can find the 'Classical Ballet Technique by Gretchen Ward Warren' to buy!
  6. Hello, Adult beginner here! I'm not an absolute beginner as I danced as a small child, but it's been so long (maybe 20 years?) I hardly think it counts.. ๐Ÿ˜‚. Feel free to skip to the next bold line if you're too tired for a backstory! Anyway, I'm four lessons in and still struggling to keep up with the sequence of movements - it's a bit overwhelming if I'm honest. I struggle to recall any lengthy sequences or if I'm at the end of the session (although the end of the session fog is improving). In the end, I basically look for another person in the group who looks the most put together in my eye line and copy them but this isn't that helpful as my brain isn't then absorbing the information to recall later. I think I struggle in part because my brain is split between getting the correct movement with the feet and moving the arms into the right position. I can only really concentrate on doing one of these at a time and as soon as I lose my concentration, I end up having to catch up my feet as I've lost my timing, the brain gets fatigued, and I become a bit of a disaster. ๐Ÿคจ At least I think I made the teacher laugh today (they did that suppressed 'I can't laugh in their face' laugh) as they turned around in time to witness the above for the umpteenth time since I joined. ๐Ÿคทโ€โ™€๏ธ Now for question(s): I super want to learn but I think I need to understand how the position of the hands relate to where the feet are. Is there a set pattern, i.e. when the leg moves to the side, the arm will also always go to the side etc? Are the arm movements different for moves such as plies vs tendus even if they go in the same direction? Or is it a counter-balance thing? Or does the teacher set all of this? Does anyone have any links/books/videos etc that can help explain or practice this? Ouf, my head hurts again going through that. ๐Ÿ˜… Any advice/pointers will be hugely appreciated.
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