I’m happy to announce that my 8 months’ ballet hiatus (+1 year before those few classes in January) is over!
Besides going from administrative worker to a student, I started the new season with a new exercise plan. I have been running on-off and doing yoga (rarely and irregularly) and I walk a lot, probably 1-5 km daily, but my dear hobby ballet and other activities such as gym, pilates, other dance classes etc have been on hold.
Mr James bought me a season card to gym and I booked at first 2 weekly ballet classes (90min+90min). It would be fantastic to have even a third or fourth, but in Oct-Nov I have regular lectures which will clash with ballet. And classes are unfortunately not very cheap so at least at first I have to settle for these two and hope that I can increase the amount in the spring.
The two classes that I’ve taken are on different levels which is good and especially useful. I can tell you that it wasn’t easy to go back, especially considering that the others have been practicing almost two years while I’ve been gone. I was delighted to meet the regular “gang” on Monday, and I was really hoping to see some of those people I used to take classes every week with! The class was fun, although I noticed that even when my mind knew what to do, my body just wouldn’t listen. :D I lack strength and flexibility, and also the coordination of arms and legs is a bit rusty… Moving to the front and to the sides are ok, but going backwards…not so much. B-)
The other class (Tuesday) is a bit easier but I took it because of the teacher: she’s young but I really enjoy her approach to ballet and teaching and I remember getting some good ideas and mental images from her, such as how the movements should feel and what kind of visual images I could have to be able to execute a step or movement correctly. This class is and was slower but a real ballet boot camp! Lots of relevés and my muscles were totally not-functioning in the end of the class, but it was totally ok. :) I was able to see how much I really am lacking strength and I definitely should learn to stretch. At least sometimes. Also, when the class is slower, I have to concentrate and really think what I’m doing, how to tendue or jeté, where I have my weight, if I’m leaning back, do I carry my elbows and arms correctly… so many things to remember and so little time!
There would be another interesting class in another school at the same time on Tuesdays, but “luckily” the teacher is still on sick leave and I don’t have to make the choice between those two classes right now. It’s more expensive to take classes in several schools so I’ll probably be able to take the other class only now and then.
Anyway, getting back to ballet is great and I’m already looking forward to next week! If anyone else is interested in recreational ballet, I would like to recommend a blog written by my ballet friend: Pointe Til You Drop. She’s also on Twitter and Facebook.
Other dance classes will probably include bailatino (a Finnish invention which combines salsa, samba, merengue, cha-cha, mambo, cumbia, paso doble, son, reggaeton, tango, pilon, rumba and/or jive but one doesn’t need a partner, also the steps are real dance steps, so it’s not a zumba-style variant), salsa and afro dance.
Dance classes will be spiced with gym, running and Pilates. This combination should give me energy but also keep me going and from time to time away from books and laptop. ;)