What is Barefoot Ballet Fitness?
Barefoot Ballet Fitness is a unique combination of ballet exercises that are low impact and a great workout, with a good stretch to finish - all set to a background of exquisite classical music.
It is just ballet - not a mix of Pilates and yoga and ballet.
Classes are one hour in duration, increasing your fitness and flexibility and leaving you inspired.
Working barefoot strengthens the smaller muscles in the feet and ankles and gets you in touch with the floor, improving your balance and increasing the flow of energy and lifeforce through the body.
Many women that I meet, both young and old, tell me that they did ballet as a child and loved it – yet there is little opportunity to continue doing ballet as an adult, purely because you love it, in an environment where you feel comfortable.
Barefoot Ballet Fitness provides the opportunity to reach back to ballet as a form of fitness training,
in an environment where it truly does not matter how good or bad, how fat, how thin, how tall, how short or how many years it is since you did your last plie! Everyone is equal and everyone is a star.
Ballet is a beautiful vehicle for expression plus a very effective way to keep your body fit and limber.
As we age, we need to keep our bodies moving and Barefoot Ballet Fitness is a way for people who have done some ballet in their past to pick it up again, working at their own pace in a comfortable, non-competitive class situation.
The only proviso is that you need to have done at least three years of ballet training in order to get the most out of the class.
I began ballet at the age of four, training with Carol Maddocks and June Brisbane on Sydney's north shore. I was granted a scholarship to attend the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA) in Melbourne and trained there for three years with Anne Woolliams and some of Australia’s finest teachers including Gailene Stock, Jan Stripling, Artor Turnbull, Garth Welch, Patricia Cox and Martin Rubenstein.
I have trained in classical ballet in both Royal Academy of Dance and Cecchetti methods up to Advanced level. I studied Martha Graham technique for three years with Artor Turnbull. I have also trained in tap dancing, flamenco and jazz ballet.
Following a successful audition in my final year of the VCA, I worked and toured as a professional ballet dancer for four years with Don Asker in his company which was based in Canberra, Human Veins Dance Theatre (now known as the Meryl Tankard Company).
I have taught ballet to children and adults, both experienced and beginners, for the last 25 years and specialise in choreography.
Frequently Asked Questions
So I don't need to wear shoes?
Shoes are not required. However, ballet ‘paws’ are recommended for classes and are available for purchase from Blochs and other ballet suppliers for less than $30 per pair. I will have a supply of ballet ‘paws’ available at classes for purchase, should you wish to buy some.
However, if you don't have any 'paws' don't let that stop you! Kick off your shoes and go barefoot for a while. It's good for you. 'Paws' just help when we get to the pirouette section.
Of course, if you still have them, dust off your ballet shoes and wear them, by all means!
What clothes should I wear?
Please wear what you would normally wear to an exercise class – stretch tights (footless), or track pants if it is cold, and a comfortable stretch top. Wear whatever you feel comfortable in that allows you to move easily and still allows me to see what’s going on with the body.
You can even wear your old tutu if you feel like it – whatever makes you happy!
How often should I attend classes?
If you decide that Barefoot Ballet Fitness is for you, commit to coming at least once a week - or more if you love it. That way you will see change and feel great.
To stay in top condition, we need to be exercising or walking, swimming and/or doing Barefoot Ballet Fitness classes, at least three times a week.
If you're already in good shape, keep going. If you could be in better shape, make a decision to change your life and stick to it. I will help you on your journey as much as I can but the decision to change is yours.
What if I haven't done any ballet before?
Barefoot Ballet Fitness is not designed for adult beginners. You need to have done at least three years classical ballet training to get the most out of the class.
However, if you would like to start learning ballet as an adult, come to the Barefoot Ballet Basics class which is specifically tailored for adult beginners.
How much does it cost?
Classes are a flat rate of $15 per class which is payable on the day of the class - EFTPOS is available.
Can children attend these classes?
No, barefoot ballet fitness classes are for adults from age 18 years and up.
What if I am an adult who would like to start learning ballet?
Barefoot Ballet Basics is for you! If you are an adult who would like to start learning ballet, come to the 9am class.
As Martha Graham said "Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance. Great dancers are great because of their passion".
I LOVE teaching adult beginners and I am ready if you are!