First class in two weeks, where’s my oxygen tank?

I expected my return to ballet class to be somewhat brutal. I did the usual on my vacation: I ate too much, and exercised too little.

I expected today’s class to be more mentally demanding than physical. Vicki B. is more of a technical, fundamentals type of teacher. Mr. and Mrs. O are more cardio demanding at times.

That was not the case today. As usual, Vicki B’s barre combinations were a bit mind scrambling, but I managed to pay attention and not get too lost. And got a few hands on corrections (there were only six people in class today, so I got my share).

I was surprised we were done with barre shortly after the 45-minute mark. Vicki’s classes sometimes consist of an hour barre. Maybe it was the sign of things to come.

Her combinations tend to be a bit more complicated (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing). But since I haven’t had her as a normal teacher for about three years, I’m having to get familiar with steps I haven’t practiced as much as I used to when I was a regular in her classes: Brises, pas de basque steps. And the hand and head movements are a little different. When you’re used to SAB-Balanchine movements, Cecchetti and Vaganova can be a little foreign if you haven’t done them in while.

Toward the end of class, during the grande allegro combination, I found myself to be a bit winded, moreso than I could remember. And I couldn’t figure out really at what point the class became so physically demanding.

It just short of built up toward the end.

I blame the two-week layoff. I’ve got to get in a lot better shape if I’m going to do the intensive in about five weeks. Or the fact that I’m “old.”

But one just graduated company girl told one of the teachers the class was “hard.” And she’ll be on a major university’s dance team in the fall.

And the one other guy in class, who auditioned for one of the professional spots with the company and is in his 20s, seemed more winded than I was.

So maybe I’m not in as bad of shape as I thought.

The bad thing is that this was the only class of the week for me with the Fourth being tomorrow.

But I have three makeups from my vacation. So I plan on taking four classes next week to get back into the groove.

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7 responses to “First class in two weeks, where’s my oxygen tank?

  • The Dancing Rider

    Sounds really hard – class and prepping for intensive.

    Just had first class in decades. Lived through it. Was challenging, even with basics. Barre “arms” seemed way different from whatever method mistress was showing when I was 25….

    Can’t imagine doing anything close to what you are doing.

  • loveballet89

    Congrats on the first class! I think the first six months after I returned to dancing, I pretty much ignored the arms. But I’ve long since reached that point, and I get called out if I don’t have the proper arms, hand, head movements (not to mention having the legs and feet doing what they’re supposed to be doing.

  • RO

    Wowww sounds tough!! Good thing you lasted the entire class and weren’t merely as winded as the ‘young chap’ in your class πŸ˜‰ I think it’s hard to switch between styles of ballet, let alone teachers. Every one of them has their own styles and own details that make their classes unique. It sounded like you enjoyed yourself though!! πŸ™‚

  • thespicymermaid

    Time of, even two weeks, makes such a difference. Time to bust out the inhaler.

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