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Is Vaganova too aggressive me?

I’m a 21 year old beginner ballet student… I know it’s late in the game, but I want to dance professionally and I’ve recently been considering formal training (I’m currently doing a Barre class on DVD 2 or 3 days a week). But the school I’m looking into is based in the Vaganova method. Among other things, I’m 5’1, I pronate and I have low arches. That being said, is Vaganova too aggressive me? For some reason or other, I’ve been under the impression that the Russian school is the toughest of the five and I’m genuinely concerned for my feet, since they’re not great to begin with. Is my hesitation unfounded? Any help you can give me is greatly appreciated.

Many thanks,

  • Kendra

    I don’t mean to be demoralizing, but if you’re seriously considering a career in ballet, you MUST be doing more than 2 to 3 days of DVD barre work a week. If you want to dance professionally, expect to practice everyday for at least two hours.

    It’s true that the Vaganova method is quite strict, but if you’re truly dedicated to becoming a dancer, you really don’t have time to worry about pain or stress on your feet. No matter which school you go to, your feet and body will always ache, and that’s just a part of training you’ll have to accept.

    I know this all sounds kind of cruel, but, coming from someone’s who’s studied ballet for eleven years, that’s just the nature of ballet training.

  • Dear Elisheva,
    in my opinion, you may need to find a teacher that teaches you according to the correct science of dance. I used to do Vaganova and it’s not something that worked for me. I too was pronated and had low arches. Pain doesn’t make you a better dancer. There are a lot of new dance science and dance medicine information out there now in order to lessen injury and train more effectively thereby producing dancers who can dance better and safer. By training correctly I am now enpointe and doing performances after 4 years of training almost everyday.

  • Sam

    You need to find a good teacher and stick with it. All the basics of ballet *should* be the same, no matter what syllabus. I personally love Vaganova. As for not having the “perfect” body it doesnt matter. Keep in mind it takes about 10 years to create a great ballet dancer. Look up Eric Conrad on Youtube, he has some great videos.

  • jacqueline

    Hello, I would like to inform you that there is sadly, absoloutley no possible way for you to become a professional ballet dancer. In order to dance professionally, dancers start ballet at 9-12 years old and they start pointe at 11-14 years old. They start training at a professional ballet school no later than 15 years old. At 16-18 years old they become a trainee with a professional school and after a year or 2 they apprentice with a ballet company. Throughout their training they also attend summer intensives across the country and you also must be born with musicality, facility, and the correct body for ballet. The ballet body is skinny, no curves, high arches, hyper extended legs, perfect turn out, short torso, long legs, long arms, and a small ballerina head.

    However, with this being said you still most certainly can dance recreationally. Forget, what you have in mind. Start training at a pre-professional ballet school and within 2-4 years (depending on how hard you are willing to work) I’m sure you can start pointe work. I wish you the best of luck.

  • Dani

    I started dance when I was 8 with Vaganova. I personally like it better than other dance schools. It is very strict, but I also have really low arches, and REALLY bad pronation. But if you do start, make sure to work on technique, and don’t go on pointe before you have great technique, because I went on pointe to early and on top of that I didn’t have great technique and my foot bone structure is NOT meant for pointe, so now i have to get surgery to dance on pointe. So make sure you work really hard on technique and you should do great!

  • Tinkerbelltomypeter

    Hello… I am 24 I started ballet 4 months ago. I wish to dance neoclassical. I must say technique vaganova is perfect you are mature in mind enough to handle the strains that would come with it. You cannot take 3days practice of some DVD. I was in pew ballet for three months 5 days a week with practice 6 days a week 1-3 hours depending of schedule of classes. Now I am in Russian school I work 3 hours a day 5 days a week that is in school. I then have hour and half of Pilates Gyrotonic two days a week, I practice 1-2 hours additional 6 days a week,and, of next month I will be having one session per week with personal trainer.. You are not young, you have the odds against you as it is. Even more reason to push yourself and work harder. Remember you are TRYING to accomplish what takes yearssssss to accomplish in a much shorter time and with no real foundation… You must reconsider your game plan

  • Remi

    If you want to dance professionally you really need to take a class. A class 3 or 4 times a week added onto your DVD training a probably some other type of dancing (or gymnastics, Pilates, yoga).

    I don’t know much about dance teaching methods, but a class is better than no class.