So, I landed around 6:30 pm from Las Vegas, I had to be in class by 7:30. Mind you we still had to collect our luggage wait for a transport to pick us up and take us to our car, and then drive on out. We drove directly to ballet, and I arrived about 30 min late, but was able to get a nice hour in. I got to sweat and practice silly glissades, and other simple exercises to get us back into ballet mind. We finished off the night with sauté de chats! WUNDERBAR!
Wednesday I didn’t feel much. I thought my back would be hurting, to my surprise I felt most stiff and sore in my calves and my feet. I didn’t do anything that day, no ballet because class doesn’t start at the other studio until Thursday.
Thursday- oh god, it hurt! My calves and feet the mooost! But an hour and a half of class it was! We did some step through waltz combination across the floor that was fun. We got to do an arabesque turn, chasse to elonge 4th and then windmill arms. A lot of girls weren’t prepping in 4th with squared off hips before something or other in the combo. Okay- I’ll start writing things down. I’m forgetting so easily! My Tuesday and Thursday classes will be far harder than my Monday and Friday classes. So anyways, by the end of the night my calves are done for. TIRED.
Friday, suck it up! My calves aren’t as horrible. I keep stretching them out, even on Wednesday and Thursday I made sure to stretch them out every so often and to still utilize them like you normally would so they don’t get stiffer. Worst thing to do if you have muscle tightness is to stay immobile because your body/blood won’t help to pump out the toxins that suffocate your muscles making them hurt. So Friday, class started at 4:30! Way earlier than 7:30. My Mentor informed me there were far fewer girls than anticipated and fewer returning. I know a few girls graduated on to college, and such and such. But…. it was just sad to see a large class of a dozen or so drop to about half that. Personally I like smaller classes, but the enrollment this year at this studio has taken a huge hit. URGH- so there’s about 6 of us in class including myself. This is a pre-pointe class so it’s a little easier. Two girls who I had been teacher assisting last year had moved up into the class. There was also another new girl I didn’t know, so they seemed to be struggling a little. A girl who also goes to both studios was there and we were just sailing through the exercises. They were fun, a little more basic and easy so the newer girls would struggle but still had a little knowledge of what they were doing. Like trying to keep up with us when we did pdb back and front quickly with a degage in second. I was actually impressed with myself how fast I was doing them and and keeping up for once instead of being ultimately confused.
We did pique turns and I was doing REALLY well. I wasn’t monster stepping away after each turn like I used to, and I could actually feel my foot slide down the back of my leg. I was doing complete steady turns, but I wasn’t moving out far enough after each turn. So I need to move more. Threw in some tour jetes which are always good, Mentor had to focus on the younger girls for this because a lot of them had never done it before, and oh boy were they helicoptering! It’s so cute 😀 It’s also so frustrating for them because I know they feel their body just out of control and they’re not sure if they’re doing it right or wrong etc. They’ll get it they’ll get it. We did some complex things at the barre too, like a balance away from the barre, then turn, pique, plie on standing leg, sousus, plie. Then you repeat because you’re turned around now. We practiced some epaulment which was fun and hard. My neck is a little sore from it. We were doing developes releve, hold your leg out, arm in second, then lift arm, swish forward, while bowing a little- keeping leg erect- and then port de bras to high 5th. So you just push out that rib cage. Which is hard because you’re using your core to balance on one foot in demi point, leg in the air, now you’re jutting your rib cage out and pulling yourself back with your shoulders and arm and careening your neck to the side and back. That was fun. A lot of the younger girls were mostly concerned with getting it right instead of dancing. I must admit though, it’s tough to dance when you’re trying to learn. It’s much easier for me to dance because I feel really elated to be back and a lot of the steps I’m very familiar with and my learning curve isn’t as bad as it used to be. I still mess up but I often laugh it off and my teacher just shakes her head at me because we both know I botched that up and I will try and fix it.
Like my chaines, oh god, do I hate them. I think I’m getting the hang of it though. I imagine myself as a board, or a card from alice in wonderland. Y’know how they wobbled about. Like that but you gotta lock in everything. It’s just my spotting is horrible. MUST. FIX. My splits were AWESOME yesterday. Almost back to where I was at the end of the year. If I keep at my 30 day challenge regime I just might have my splits!!!! I’m going to work more on planks and some other exercises for my back and things.
Unfortunately, I didn’t hear what I had personally hoped my Mentor would say, at least to me. She said it to my fellow dancer who goes to both studios too. She spent all summer going to 2-3 different studios all summer to keep up and refine herself. Mentor said she has come a long way and the summer classes really helped. I did hear from my Mentor though that my lines were much nicer, my balance/holds were good, my pas de chat was good, my feet still awesome… so overall I may not have significantly changed but I didn’t regress too much. Mentor seems really focused on the girls who are newer and I’m okay with that. I’m not so selfish to think I should have all the attention all the time, and I can see my Mentors subtle corrections she gives me without even making eye contact or verbal announcement . She’ll be walking by and tap herself on the shoulder and I immediately know my shoulder is too far up. She knows I’m watching her and vice versa.
Something that has been bothering me is my right ankle is really weak in a sense that it’s strong and rebounds from suddenly collapsing on itself and I’m not hurt, it just… collapses though. Like “boing!” couldn’t hold that. It did it all during the summer when I was releveing on it for our Raymonda scarf variation. It would cause me to wobble off point, get back on and then I’d be a beat or two behind trying to fix myself. UGH. Gotta figure it out, maybe a lot more strengthening exercises at home. It has always been the weaker one since it’s the one that I sprained when I was a pre-teen.
Monday is class 😀