Saturday, August 30, 2014

Tights Update!

Everyone!  The lovely capri tights are indeed from Target! They are $6 nowadays (which...hmph), though at my local store they had a few in the clearance bin in fun colors (which I may have purchased. Because aqua capri tights are totally dress-code).

The tights are usually in a bunch of bins on an end cap in the hosiery section. Beyond capri tights, they also have footless, and regular footed tights in a variety of fun colors (be careful when you're picking out tights, they often get mixed in the bins).

I got the M/L size, and it fit me wonderfully (as I mentioned earlier). As I've also mentioned, I'm curvy in the hips/bum, and these weren't too snug anywhere. Yay!

This is the waistband. Yay, no elastic!

The leg opening has similar construction. I wear them just under my knees, but they would stretch down to mid-calf. The leg opening isn't too snug either, so if you have muscular calves (which I bet you do if you're a dancer), you won't feel like they're cutting off your circulation.

They are not opaque, though not totally sheer either. I would actually feel pretty comfortable wearing them over my leotard without a skirt. But they are definitely NOT like leggings.

In short? If you like to wear capri tights to class, you should swing by your nearest Target and pick yourself up a few pairs of these. At $6, you really can't go wrong.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The perfect tights

I was digging around in my tights bin the other day, and happened upon a pair of black capri tights. I decided to give them a whirl at some point (since I'm experimenting with my class look), and stuffed them into my dance bag.

Today was the day, and THEY ARE AWESOME! They're super soft and stretchy, aren't too snug (but not too loose either), and don't have an evil elastic waist (its the tight material folded over in a 1.5" band), so I don't get the dreaded "sausage" look! LOVE.

The bads news? They have no tag. I have no idea from whence they came (or what size they are). I did some pondering, and I suspect they might be from Target (the cheapy $5 ones), because I'd gone on a mini-spree there last year and got some colored versions to make dance shirts out of. If they are, I'll be sure to let you guys know, because $5 awesome tights are awesome.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Life Isn't Fair (if you're a teen)

As I've mentioned before, my current ballet studio has a set dress code for its students. Each level has a specific style/color of leotard that they're required to wear for class, and there is a no skirts, shorts, or pants rule (though they're okay for jazz).  There are only two exceptions:
  • Adult students (18+) can wear whatever they want (and men/boys obviously have different rules).
  • It's that time-o-the-month.
I attend class with the intermediate/advanced teenagers (aka: Grade V, even though we don't follow a syllabus), and that class also has a set leotard (a black Capeizo BraTek).  However, because I'm over 18, I can (and do) wear crazy leotards, shorts, skirts, and leggings.

My bin of (crazy) leotards.

The girls are mostly in the 12-16 age range, so they're at that point where they're getting uncomfortable with their changing bodies and want to hide them. This results in semi-sneaky attempts to wear shorts in ballet. Each time the wardrobe mistress notices, she makes the girls remove them while the girls grumble and groan, but overall its usually a fairly peaceful battle.

This week it got a little heated. Apparently, there had been a lecture regarding shorts and the dress code on Tuesday (I wasn't there, but the AD mentioned it later). Despite said lecture, some of the teens were wearing shorts again on Wednesday. Wardrobe!Mistress noticed, and told the girls to remove them. They didn't, and were still wearing them when we were setting the barres up for class.  As you can imagine, the wardrobe mistress got annoyed

"Take them off NOW," she said, glaring at the ladies in question.

"But Glorie doesn't have to!" was the argumentative response.

Um. Awkward.  Of course, this was a day when I was wearing the most random outfit ever--my Laico leo with a black sports bra (complete with showing straps!), pink tights, and knee length black leggings. Not to mention one leg warmer around the ankle of my healing foot. If there was ever a human that did not fit the dress code that day, it was me. Wardrobe!Mistress reminded them that I was an adult. Arguments continued. Finally the shorts came off and class went on as normal.

After technique class, the teens stayed to do some partnering, but I skipped out because of my foot. I ended up talking to both the AD and the wardrobe mistress about my attire. I suggested that I could at least wear black leotards so that I looked like a part of the class, and maybe a simple black skirt (to still have "adult" status). I was slightly surprised and delighted when they both said, "NO. You're an adult. You've earned it. You can wear whatever the hell you want." Well, yay!  Not that I'll ever wear shorts again, because I have discovered they are completely unflattering on me.

Also good because I totally just ordered two new custom leotards from an Etsy shop (I'll be sure to review when they arrive, but it will be at least a month), and neither is black. Oops.

*UGH BRAS. I'll get into that in another post.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Back to School

Classes started up again yesterday, and apparently I have no self control and am an overachiever.

It started out mildly enough.  I attended the normal intermediate/advanced class, only doing limited relevé, and did not jump (much to my sadness--sitting out of grand allegro was a little painful).  This class is followed by pointe, but because none of us are on pointe at the moment (everyone has been on break), it ended up being another class (except with tons of relevé--which I did not do, save for some turns and balances). 

Despite my (poor) attempts not to do too much, things were a little achy in the foot when we finished. So, when I got home I took some Advil, and iced it in a bucket of ice water.  Happily, I don't seem to have done any major damage--I did a small rise on both feet this morning and it didn't ache (whew).

I really have to remember to ease back into things properly and SLOWLY.  Which means both taking just ONE class a day, and fewer classes during the week.  I have no idea why this is such a complicated concept for me to master.  I guess I feel strange and a little useless just marking through combinations while everyone else is working hard. I have to keep reminding myself that I won't be back to it any quicker if I get re-injured.

Also on the plus side, all of this non-jumping should be really good conditioning for my port de bras and épaulement!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Note to Self: Injuries can be a sign you're over-doing it.

My apologies for the lack of posts! The foot/ankle is still being a jerk, so I haven't been dancing, and therefore have had nothing to report (except for complaints about being antsy).

I went back to the podiatrist today for a check up to see how/if the injection had helped anything. The pain on the inside part of my ankle has disappeared (hurray!), but a pinchy feeling is still occurring on the outside, sort of back near my heel. It doesn't hurt too badly if I just prop my foot up, but as soon as I put weight on it (a la relevé), it gets all grumpy.

The doc felt around and pushed that area a bit, and I definitely had pain. Turns out that it was my joint (the subtalar joint, to be exact). That made me a little panicky at first, but apparently it's just another inflammation thing (yay synovial fluid!) I likely had BOTH tendinitis AND the subtalar issue, thanks to my crazy dance schedule this past spring. Good times. I got another steroid injection (different side of my ankle this time), and so far it feels tons better (I'm numb and only an two hours in, but YAY).

If it continues to feel better, I can return to dance classes next week when the studio re-opens. I'll have to take it easy--limited relevé, no jumping or leaping. But at least I'll be back!

The bad news is that when the doctor was telling me what not to do (i.e. jumping) he noted that a lot of problems with that joint come from impact. Our studio does not have sprung floors, so I'm sure the combination of that PLUS my drastic increase in dance was not helping matters. (I feel like this combo is also to blame for the shin splints I got last year).

I'm thinking of cutting back a bit when things start up again; at the height of my craziness last spring, I was taking 7+ classes a week, and had drastically increased my time en pointe because of our spring show. Even my mom thought I was over-doing it. I'm thinking of cutting back a bit, but adding in some pilates to work on my strength and alignment. 

Anyone else out there do pilates? Has it helped your dancing? I'm looking into some reformer classes (which I have never done before), and any input or advice would be appreciated!