Ballet Pointe Shoes - Am I Ready?

by Audrey
(Normandy, Tennessee, USA)

Ballet Pointe Shoes - Am I Ready?

Okay, so I've taken ballet from 5-7 quit for a while, and started dance back up again from 6th to 10th grade. I'm now fifteen. My arches aren't the best, but I have good ankles. My balance is better than most girls in class, but flexible wise not so great. I'm 5 2" and about 102 pounds, a bit more stocky than other ballet dancers(but oweing much of that to muscle)
I've been constantly dreaming of being in pointe shoes since age seven, and it would be more than amazing if I could start in them soon.
Thanks in advance! :-)


Reply by Odette

to Ballet Pointe Shoes - Am I Ready?

Hi Audrey,
Thanks for your message and lovely photograph, it is great to hear from you.

It is tough to give you a direct answer to whether you are ready yet, although it does sound like you have been studying ballet for a good amount of time now. Flexibility is not something you have to judge so much for pointe shoes, since it is mostly about your ankle stability and general strength.

Let me ask you a few more questions to help decide if you are ready for pointe:

1. Does your demi-pointe feel strong and stable enough in class? It is important to be able to rise and releve on a high demi-pointe, so that you are able to articulate your feet when it comes to pointe work.

2. How is your overall technique and strength in your legs? It will take a lot of work, especially in the legs to support you on pointe.

3. Has your teacher given you any clues to whether
you will be on pointe soon?

You are certainly old enough to begin pointe, so now it is just a case of getting permission of your teacher and making sure you are at the right level in your class to begin.

You can also do some key preparation to get you ready. I really think Lisa's pre-pointe book could be perfect for you to get an exact idea to whether you are ready for pointe and it can even help improve you for when you can start.

ballet pre-pointe
Remember, just like I did before I went en pointe, ballet students MUST take responsibility for their own strengthening prior to beginning pointe work.

Australian dancer, Lisa Howell has made a video which explains how pre-point strengthening works.

Don't leave it to your teacher!

You can watch this pre-pointe video
yourself here
(just wait for the page to load up then the video is on the top right of the page).

I hope this helps Audrey and please do keep in touch to let me know how your dancing is getting on.

Best wishes,

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