Will ballet dancing help my little girl?
Will ballet dancing help my little girl?: -
I have had a passion for ballet since I was little, although I was too shy to give it a go. I now have a gorgeous little 6 year old who has been doing ballet for 7 months and is so enthusiastic, it's lovely. The thing is, she has already broken her leg at the age of 16 months and her wrist at the age of 3. I've been assured that these are mended and that there is no underlying medical condition, however, she is so reserved when it comes to all other forms of exercise that her fitness is poor and her weight is increasing. I can only afford ballet lessons once a week. Will these eventually make a difference to her long-term fitness or are there other activities I can do with her at home that will contribute towards the positive effects of her ballet classes?
Also, will ballet help with flat feet? I've read of famous ballerinas dancing despite this problem.
Thanks for your help :)
Reply by Odette
to Will ballet dancing help my little girl?
Thank you very much for your query.
There is nothing but positive benefits from doing ballet classes. Ballet has many benefits in terms of exercise; it will improve co-ordination, posture, flexibility and general health and well-being.
If you are looking to ballet as more of a hobby for you daughter then it should be done purely for the enjoyment and love. So, if your daughter is very enthusiastic with ballet I would definitely recommend you to continue with the classes.
Doing one class a week is better than doing none, however, ballet is something which takes constant time and endurance to see much improvement in terms of physical fitness. It is hugely known to tone and lengthen the body, but I believe that is mainly the case if you are doing it consistently or training more seriously as a professional dancer.
You can't guarantee ballet will solely improve long-term fitness because ballet classes can tend to move quite slowly, or sometimes don't seem intense enough as there's a lot of stopping and starting.
Ballet does require athletic ability and perhaps combined with other sports could more greatly improve your daughter's fitness.
Alongside with ballet, I would strongly encourage swimming as another form of exercise. A lot of professional dancers go swimming to keep fit in the holidays as it is not too strenuous on the muscles yet still has huge fitness benefits. You say your daughter is reserved when it comes to other forms of exercise, but try to encourage swimming as I believe this could be the answer to keep her fit.
Pilates is a popular activity used by training and professional dancers to improve their strength in dancing. Pilates is a form of exercises which needs to be done correctly in order to achieve any benefits so, unless your daughter feels enthusiastic about pilates, then perhaps give that one a miss until she is older and able to understand the concepts of it.
Onto your question about flat feet, I believe ballet may help with flat feet as it stretches the muscles in the feet and therefore strengthens them. A famous ballerina, Dame Alicia Markova, got taken to ball classes by her mother to correct what she thought was a problem of flat feet and weak legs.
I wish you and your daughter all the best, it's always lovely to hear from you so don't hesitate to come back!
All the best