Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know which course is right for me?
If you're new to Ballet or did some as a child, you'll want Level 1 Beginners. Ballet Floor-barre will also be suitable and will fast-track your progress, increasing ballet strength, flexibility and turnout while working on correct technique.
Adults learn differently from children, applying intellect rather than just copying the teacher, so if you did ballet as a child but not to a very high level, it will be best to start afresh.
If you did ballet into your teens but have had a break of 10 years or so, Level 2 will be suitable, possibly Level 3 depending on a few things including your age and level of muscle and tendon fitness.
Contact Serena to discuss.
If you received formal training (e.g. taking exams) and were doing pointe-work but have had a long break, a higher level may still be suitable but it will be important to be patient with your body and not ask too much of it, too soon. You may find you remember everything but will be lacking the strength, skill and elasticity - particularly in the Achilles tendons - so resisting going full out too soon would be wise.
Always work safely and within your means, under the guidance of your teacher.
What style of ballet do you teach?
Ballet for You has developed its own syllabus specifically for adults with technique and terminology based on the English style of Ballet as per that of the Royal Academy of Dance. Whilst correct technique is very important, quality of movement and development of artistry, especially in the higher levels, are also what Ballet for You is about. Handouts are provided after each lesson to all levels excluding Advanced, so you can read and have a reference of the new steps and combinations you learn each week. There are also several video links so you can practice alongside.
How do I pay?
Bank transfer is the easiest - see booking form - or you can pay in person. Credit and Debit Cards are not accepted at the moment. (Please note that cheques need to be made out for the full amount.)
when do I need to pay?
Payment is required at the time you enrol. Please note that until payment is made towards your fees, your place is not secure and could be given to someone else. This is because places are limited to avoid overcrowding and allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
Fees under £140 need to be paid in full with your booking form.
Fees over £140 can be paid in two halves; the first with your booking form and the second, before the start of term.
Fees over £280 can be paid in 3 lots; the first with your booking and the last before week 4 of the term.
If you need to spread the cost of your courses further, or if you need a special payment plan, please contact Serena.
Are there discounts available?
There are generous discounts for attending multiple courses as well as a £10 Ballet for You loyalty discount once you've completed 3 or more consecutive terms. Attending 2 courses comes with a £25 discount; 3 courses offers a £70 discount and attending 4 courses comes with a £95 discount (excludes Ballet Floor-barre, Variations, Pointe; also excludes the Improvers and Advanced Intensive packages which are already heavily reduced by 25%). There is also a £10 discount available if attending a 60 min Ballet Floor-barre course with a Ballet course (excludes Intensives).
What size are classes?
Class sizes range from 10 to 25 students so everyone receives plenty of individual attention, support and encouragement. The Level 1 courses in particular are small as it's important that the foundations are grasped correctly from the start to prevent any unsafe habits form forming.
can I attend casually on a drop-in basis?
I'm afraid not. Classes are structured with the whole term in mind, with each lesson (and level) building from the last resulting in real progress, consistency and a sense of continuity. I find that this approach gets better results and students feel a greater sense of achievement.
The higher level classes are taught with more of an open class feel but they too are run as courses which also helps class sizes to remain at a safe and enjoyable level.
what if i miss a class?
If you miss a class, you can attend another up to the level of your skill within the same term. It is ideal to attend the same level class within the same week so as to not miss out on that week's material. It is not normally possible to carry missed classes over to the next term.
can I try a class before enrolling?
Enrolment opens about a month before the previous term ends and you can come and watch a class at this time before committing to a course. If you have done ballet before, you can take part in a class (payable) so long as the course is not full but again, this will need to be before the new term starts.
What should I wear/bring to class?
Comfortable clothing - Leotard and tights and ballet skirt if you like; leggings and a top are also fine though nothing too baggy especially not round the knees, ankles or mid-drift. Please try to avoid clothing with stripes or neon as those can make it harder to judge correct placement.
Gents should wear men's balletwear or leggings / cycling shorts and a t-shirt. A dancer's belt (support) is also recommended.
Soft ballet shoes - if you haven't purchased these before, it's best to try them on in a ballet shop rather than order online as sizes can vary. Some will come with elastics already sewn; if not, just ask in the shop. There are several dance shops in Covent Garden. You'll receive a list of stockists if enrolling on a level 1 course.
Long hair should be tied neatly away from the face; if you have a ponytail, please pin this so it doesn't move around as this will affect the way you move your head as you dance.
If attending a Pointe course, here's some guidance for prepping your feet and buying Pointe shoes. Please note that Pointe is not suitable for everyone and is not available without attending the preceding Pre-Improvers course. You'll therefore need to be at least at that level of skill. Please speak with Serena before enrolling.
For Ballet Floor-barre you'll need a mat or towel to lie on and a long pair of socks instead of ballet shoes which will be used as stretching props.