I take an adult beginner’s ballet class twice a week. A lot of the students have taken ballet as teenagers or young children so they’re all really quite good. I, on the other hand, came into ballet for the first time at age 32 and still struggle with my natural sense of clumsiness and lack of coordination. Since I’ve moved to San Diego, I’ve only recently gotten back into it and it’s really hard.
One of the students in the class is a man. Not only is he the only guy in our class, he’s also 60 years old and this is his first time doing ballet. He’s amazingly flexible and has great natural turnout. When I feel like I can’t motivate myself to pull on tights and a leotard and drive over to the studio, I remind myself that someone my dad’s age is hauling himself over to the class and is willing to struggle through it.
Another admirable man who’s taken up ballet is John Lowe. He’s Britain’s oldest ballet dancer at 90 who is currently dancing with a professional dance company. This grandfather of 11 starting taking lessons at 79, and after 9 years of classes, he auditioned and successfully landed a part in a production of Prokofiev’s The Stone Flower for the Lantern Dance Theatre Company. He still practices three times a week in the studio and has installed a trapeze in his home to build up his strength. It just goes to show you, you’re never too old to start something new. Here’s a link to an article about his achievement.