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DanceMomLaura

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Reply with quote  #26 
My DD started her first hip hop class at age 10.  The year after she moved into other genres, such as ballet, jazz, musical theater.  She was asked on team at age 11.  The rest, as they say, is history.  She "caught up" just fine with all the dancers on her team, most of whom have been dancing since they were 3/4. 
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dancerachael1

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Reply with quote  #27 
While I started dancing at age 3, I didn't start doing ballet until age 12 and I am now dancing in a professional ballet school. I think starting at the right time is up to you and your daugther. I suggest just enrolling her in a fun more relaxed class that meets once a week. If she expresses a love for it, you can enroll her in more and, if not, she can always drop the class. This is what my mom did with me and it was really nice becaue there was never a ton of pressure, and that is actually why I feel in love with dancing. I hope this helps!
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DanceMommy2Riley

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Reply with quote  #28 
My daughter started dance at age 10 and started ballet at 11. Ballet is now her favourite style and she is very good for a child that started later on in the game (all of her dance friends started dance at age 3). She is hoping to try YAGP this year in Toronto. [smile] 
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hopefuldancer17

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Reply with quote  #29 
My daughter started creative movement at 3 and moved to a ballet school at 5. Honestly, I'm pretty sure she could have started at 8 or 9 and been just fine. But she loved to dance, so we kept signing her up.
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #30 
Quote:
Originally Posted by my2miracles
Check out this young lady - she's a 1st year trainee at Joffrey Chicago.  She started dance at age 9.  You can also find a lot of videos on YouTube featuring her.  She's a fantastic dancer. 

http://joffrey.org/people/jasmine-getz-0


That's Jasmine!  She danced at our pre-pro studio for awhile.  Super sweet girl and extremely talented!
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AusDM

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Reply with quote  #31 

My DD started at 8.  We didn't have much choice in the matter because we're rural and there wasn't a dance school available within an hour's drive.

She's now nearly 15 and while she can notice some difference in some things, i.e "tricks" - which she isn't really interested in anyway, she is on par with most things technique wise and elements that are within her control physically - by that I mean she may not be quite as slim and flexible as others, but she makes up for it in other ways (story telling, etc).

One of her dance mentors didn't start until he was in his early teens and he has an active career within the Australian dance industry, so never say never.  I think if you have a drive and passion for something, age isn't a boundary.  I remember seeing a video of an outstanding young man who was approximately 11 or so, competing at an American competition, and at the end of his routine they said he had been dancing for just over 12 months - it looked as though he had been training since birth!  So there is no correct answer as such.

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NCKDAD

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Reply with quote  #32 
I would say easier to start “late” with good training than 2/3 with poor training. Hard to fix years of bad mechanics and technique
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ElleWood2

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Reply with quote  #33 
Thanks for the replies.

I started my first child at age 3. I think that is possibly why she lost interest, but I don't really know. With my younger daughter, I'd rather wait until she sees ballet on television and it sparks an interest in her and she says 'I want to take ballet'. Then I'll put her in it.

Might also see if my son wants to, as well.

There are some dance classes that start kids even younger than 3 but I don't see the point in those. Just my opinion. She can learn a lot about poise and balance at this age by just doing regular activities, I think.
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dncemom01

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Reply with quote  #34 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ElleWood2
Thanks for the replies.

I started my first child at age 3. I think that is possibly why she lost interest, but I don't really know. With my younger daughter, I'd rather wait until she sees ballet on television and it sparks an interest in her and she says 'I want to take ballet'. Then I'll put her in it.

Might also see if my son wants to, as well.

There are some dance classes that start kids even younger than 3 but I don't see the point in those. Just my opinion. She can learn a lot about poise and balance at this age by just doing regular activities, I think.


My dancer (16yr old dd) starting dancing at 2. We put her in dance because she was spending all her time at the backfield for her older brother and really wanted something that was hers (does that make sense?). Dance or gymnastics were the only things we could find locally that had classes for someone her age and I wasn’t interested in mommy and me classes at gymnastics. She has tried softball and gymnastics but dance stuck and she has been going strong. We are on year 14 with no signs of stopping.
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irishdear

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Reply with quote  #35 
My frustration, or perhaps sense of restlessness, comes from the fact that I did start my daughter so early, 2 years, and now at 8 am wondering after hours of dance classes, two plus years on two teams, and trips to competitions as well as a trip to nationals in Orlando, if my daughter is as passionate about dance as I am.  That is my fear.  At 8 she seems as interested as the rest, but she is not begging to go to class or waking up wanting nothing but dance.   She is your typical 8 year old who loves life and dance is part of it.  She also plays the cello and sings solos and is as passionate about those two things as she is dancing.  I want a clear picture of the future regarding her dance talent and have had to face that I won't have that.  It would be nice to have a little print out of what opportunities she will have down the line, where she stacks up, assurances that she will have YAGP and solos at the recitals, but the reality is that I will never have that. It is about the journey, and for me, as her mother, I need to let her have her journey.  
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irishdear

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Reply with quote  #36 
I guess in response to your question...I don't think the ones who start at 2, 3 or even through 6 or 7 have any real advantage in the true sense.  No child that young, especially not 2 and 3 who are developmentally just learning body awareness, have any sense of what they want for themselves dance wise.  In the end, you can give a child as many hours of dance as they want, the journey will end unless it is the dancer herself that wants it. He or she has to be passionate about it, and from experience, that isn't something a kid can really truly possess until they have had a bit of life experiences.  You do see kids every once in awhile that have that innate passion for dance early on,  but, for every one of those you have hundreds of typical children who don't know enough about who they are to have true passion for anything.  That is the most important ingredient though when it comes to truly beautiful and talented dancers in my opinion, and since that is something that has to come from within them, there would be no need to get them into dance any earlier.  😉  The dancers I know who are now dancing professionals happen to be dancers who came to the art after age 8 - not before......just my experience.  Doesn't mean you obviously won't see otherwise, but this is just what I have seen.....eventually more important than the starting age is the desire the dancer possesses.
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #37 

If it makes you feel any better, irishdear, my own dd (who is now just shy of 18 & hoping for a professional career) didn't find that drive/passion until she was 12.  That year First Position came out.  Prior to that it was really just a fun extracurricular.  She danced no more than 1 day/wk until she was 9/10.  At 12 she auditioned for & made the comp team so that was the year the commitment ramped up considerably.  From that point it's been full speed ahead... & she's never looked back.

I don't know how things are run at your studio but if you are concerned that she's doing what she's doing simply because it's what's she's always done as opposed to because it's what she "has" to do, you might consider dialing back a little if possible.  And then slowly build back up.  Easier said then done if you're in an environment where they push kids from a young age, I know (although I know that they probably don't see it as pushing).  I'm sure you feel like she's a big girl & perhaps worry that if you don't stay on the train she'll maybe get lost in the dust but.... she really is so very young. Please don't get confused by the exceptions (like the Hope Award winner).  She "is" the exception, not the rule.  There is no rush.  And there's a lot to be said for not just slow boil training, but a slow boil journey.            

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irishdear

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Reply with quote  #38 
Thanks Heidi459,

You know, I wasn't really feeling this restless until her best friend, who she dances alongside, was hand picked for the ensemble at YAGP.  I am over the top proud of this little friend, but it also got me thinking about my DD.  Objectively she is no where near ready for that.....however, she is dancing on the same teams as the friend and  was invited to the same private class (with older on pointe dancers) and even shares a solo with her on the jazz team.  As I had said earlier but deleted, my daughter has been told to wait on pirouettes.  I immediately start thinking of all those sad faces I see, the girls lined up as understudies, week after week wanting something they aren't getting, those coveted things (solos, Elite Team placements, opportunities) that aren't coming.  I feel so sad for them, that they aren't seeing the handwriting on the wall.  People need to be honest about this, it's out there....the dancers who seem to want but can't get.  My daughter has not articulated feeling pressure and she is NOT jealous of her friend going on to YAGP - her response to me is "I am not ready for that mom....maybe down the line, but not now...."  and then she runs off to hug her dance buddies and laugh and giggle before class....I've decided to continue, but am going to take a little step back.  I think my restlessness comes from being a bit over attached to her relationship with dance.  I need to let her own it.
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irishdear

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Reply with quote  #39 

 
While I started dancing at age 3, I didn't start doing ballet until age 12 and I am now dancing in a professional ballet school. I think starting at the right time is up to you and your daugther. I suggest just enrolling her in a fun more relaxed class that meets once a week. If she expresses a love for it, you can enroll her in more and, if not, she can always drop the class. This is what my mom did with me and it was really nice becaue there was never a ton of pressure, and that is actually why I feel in love with dancing. I hope this helps!
 
this is huge......"because there was no pressure"  my daughter has always loved dance because of this...she loves being on stage and being beautiful and flowy.....once the pressure starts, which it has because of competitions and friends going to YAGP, the focus changes...but for my daughter she absolutely needs to have her love of performing placed above competition, because once it becomes that, I know my daughter well enough to know that she will loose the best of what she comes to the table with...
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