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The Dancer's Body: Try a Ballet Workout

written by: Cheryl Gabbert • edited by: Angela Atkinson • updated: 10/27/2010

I grew up dreaming of being a ballerina. The beautiful costumes and the Nutcracker were mesmerizing to me as a child. Now that I'm an adult looking for a new fitness quest, I find myself looking back to my younger days, and once thinking of ballet. This time I'm dreaming of a ballet workout.

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    The Ballet Workout

    If you still dream of being a ballerina, and the joy of dance captivates you, a ballet workout just might be your fitness niche. Some of the country's ballet companies are now offering adult ballet workouts to the public, and they seem to be quite popular. If you prefer videos, there are ballet based workout videos out there too. From ballet style warm-ups to deep stretches and floor work, these classes can be an awesome part of your fitness routine.

    What will a ballet-inspired workout accomplish for you? How about longer, leaner, beautifully toned muscles. You'll achieve a certain gracefulness, and improve your balance and posture as well. Ballet improves joint mobility and flexibility. You'll enjoy greater body awareness and less overall stress. We all love the look of a ballet dancer's body, so why not give their workout a try. In addition to a great workout, you'll increase your knowledge of classical music and up your ballet vocabulary too!

    To get you started, here are three great ballet workout videos to try. No tutu required!

    1. Jennifer Kries: New Body Ballet, (2008)

    This is a new ballet inspired workout. It's 45 minutes long, and offers beginners and intermediate users a great introduction to ballet-inspired stretches and movements.

    2. Jessica Sherwood: Ballet Bootcamp 2

    Using classical music, Sherwood guides you through muscle toning and a series of fluidic ballet movements. You'll learn ballet terminology as a result of following these 2 disc, 85 minute routines. It is suggested that you have some prior knowledge of pilates and ballet before attempting this workout.

    3. The New York City Ballet Workout, Vol. 2

    Led by Peter Martins, the ballet master in chief at the New York City Ballet, this is a challenging 90 minute routine. The core and lower body muscle groups are the focus of most of the exercises. There is a dance at the end too, so you can really show off those new moves. This workout comes with a glossary that explains the ballet terminology used in the video.

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    Resources

    1. SF Gate.com, Home of the Sanfrancisco Chronicle: Choreographing Fitness: Ballet Workouts Find an Active Audience in the Bay Area, Laura

    Thomas.

    2. www.healthadel.com: Dance As a Natural Form of Exercise.

    3. www.fineartsassociation.org/dance-class.html.

    4. www.amazon.com.