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How can I change my weight and obtain a ballerina’s figure without my mum noticing that I’m doing it?

Hi, I’ve been dancing for almost 11 years now and now I’m 13. I didn’t used to have a problem with my wieght and size but now as I’ve got older I think I’ve lost my ballet figure! I Really want to go on to the royal ballet company or somewhere like it and I don’t know whether they’d acept me if I didn’t quite look right and didn’t have the correct build for being on the stage.

I’m really heavy for my age – around 8 stone – well it’s heavy for a dancer and I feel that whenever i’m being lifted my partner finds it a struggle and I feel really bad and embarassed! I know that i’m supposed to help and hold my own body wieght but I find it hard. I was never really taught how to do it properly so that’s my first question; How do you hold your own body wieght when being lifted?

I have really broad shoulders. I know there’s nothing I can do about that because it’s my bone structure but it makes my head look kinda wierd and the rest of my body quite wierd as well and big. It makes me look rather butch, and people (boys) keep saying I look like a man. I just thought that if a slimmed out a bit then they’d realise that its my shoulders, not me. I don’t know where to start thought because my mum is quite large and counts me as skinny; I wont deny that compared to her i’m normal for a person, not a ballet dancer; she’d go mad if she found out that I was trying to loose a bit of weight and slim out. The first place I want to start is my bottom and thighs, i have quite a round bum which sticks out whether I hold my muscles or not – I think I have too many muscles in my bum. My thighs are mainly flab with some muscles but all the muscle is in the wrong place because my dance teacher (i’m not saying she’s bad or anything) didn’t teach me how to use the right muscles.

I’ve looked at pilates but I seem to get a book or anything without my mum finding out because if she did she may even take me out of dancing! Please help me I just don’t know what to do! Bernadette

  • Avie’

    Well,there isn’t much way to get around your mum noticing. I’ve been trying to get around my mum lately. I just eat what I want,feed some to the dog,and say I’m done. She bothers me about it some,but I get around it. I know how you feel about pilates,id like to get a video,but there isn’t much way I could get it without my mum being involved :/. oh mums…

  • Jen

    A lot of ballet school recommend taking pilates classes in addition to ballet, because it teaches you about your “core” muscles, which should be being used in ballet too. Maybe with this information, your mum would let you do pilates too?

  • Marissa

    I would recomend doing pilates, not just in order to lose weight, but because it would help with developing the right muscles for dance. explaining to your mum that you want to do pilates to improve your dancing would probably make her more receptive to the idea. also your mum probably wouldn’t object to you trying to eat healthier, eating more fruit and veggies, cutting back on junk food and soda. don’t overdo it though. you are still growing and even for a ballerina you are only a few pounds over the average.

  • Zoe

    At 8 stone, you weigh 112 pounds (had to convert to understand what you are talking about). You don’t say how tall you are, which makes a bit of difference. In any case I was kind of shocked to realize you only weight 112 — you make yourself sound like an elephant, and you are certainly not, at 112 pounds, whatever your height. If you are very very short, maybe, but if you are 13 this is especially not the time to go on an unbalanced crash diet.

    I would be more concerned about the following two things: (1) what you said about after 11 years of dancing you aren’t using the right muscles — if you want to get into the Royal Ballet you need to find a teacher who WILL teach you how to use the right muscles; and (2) please be very careful how you go about losing any weight. Cut out any junk food; eat lean protein, vegetables and a little fruit, and some complex carbohydrates like rice or whole grains.

  • Natalie

    i would recommend doing pliates!! but if you are not able to do this then i would recommend u just eating helthier.. because you do dance (ballet) you wouldnt need to do exercise so just eat healthy. tell your mum that its an experiment to see how long you can last..

  • Hi,

    I really wouldn’t recommend trying to loose much weight on your own. As already said, at 13 you’re still growing and developping physically and crash diets aren’t healthy for anyone, but especially not for a growing body. If you are determined to loose weight, eating more healthy is a first step. If you want to do more, explain to your mother that you are not feeling well about your current weight and ask her help in seeking a qualified nutritionist to help you change your eating habits if necessarry.
    Some teenagers have concerns about their weight when there is no reason. If this is the case (which I can’t assess without knowing you personally) the key is to change the way you think and feel about yourself, which is, of course, easier said than done.
    But a nutritionist or dietist (I don’t know how you call them in English) should be able to assess this and help you get the assistance you need.

  • I think everyone above has pretty well said it. Eliminate junk food, eat the lean proteins. Don’t cut out fats – good fats are a little butter, a little fat from meat, and olive or flax oil in salads. Raw or lightly steamed veggies – and sadly, no desserts if you are serious, but fruits for a snack are good. Cheese is a good snack in small quantities. You might have a growth spurt and suddenly be thin! Don’t get fanatical about it, it’s very common to have weight fluctuations as a teenager.

  • layla

    Your just the same as me, i also want to be a ballet dancer and would be a dream to be in the royal ballet, im ballet crazy! i also am around your weight and have a problem getting it off i always seem to go on diets but let myself down by after eating something i shouldent! but lately im trying hard to cut back what i eat when i eat it, an dim doing quite good i think so all i can say is try what im doing. ino its not alot of information but i just wanted to let you no your not alone 🙂 xx