Always ask your ballet instructor if the class will stretch out together. Stretching is very important in ballet. It is used to loosen and strengthen muscles and to lengthen your posture. Stretching is vital, and it has to be done before you begin each ballet class session and before a ballet performance. If you avoid stretching, you are at a higher risk of injury during class. Always stretch after the class is over.
Unless you speak French, you might find these difficult to say at first, but if you repeat them over and over to yourself as you perform the steps, you’ll find it becomes easier. These steps will be the same throughout your ballet career, so if you are serious about your dancing you could buy a ballet dictionary or download and print a ballet glossary from the Internet so you can learn some names before you even get to the steps! Beginners classes are usually slow-paced so don’t worry about having too many names to learn at once, your ballet vocabulary will build over time.
Getting the right size shoe is always important, but it’s every more important when it comes to ballet shoes. You need to have a shoe that supports your foot correctly. Don’t be tempted to buy the first pair of ballet shoes you try on. Try a few pairs and see which fit you snugly and feel the most comfortable. If possible purchase these from a store that specializes in dance clothing and where the staff is trained in helping new dancers choose the right size footwear.
Remind yourself that every ballet class will begin at the ballet barre position. This will become a habit. Just to be cautious, your ballet class session could start at the ballet barre learning dance steps and positions. The ballet barre is used to build your agility, strength, and flexibility. Take the ballet barre seriously; it will not be a waste of time or energy. If you avoid the ballet barre, you are unable to dance. All dancers in each level (beginner, intermediate, advanced, even professional) begin ballet class at the ballet barre.
Does your ballet school have a strict dress code? You need to find this out before you turn up for your first class! If you wear the wrong type of clothing, even if it’s the wrong color your ballet instructor may not allow you in the room – ballet is very strict on rules! Spare money and embarrassment by doing your homework and ensuring you have exactly the right style and color of ballet clothing that your ballet school requires.