Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Frustration Station

I've been meaning to update y'all on the crazy that is my dance life right now (maybe even with pictures!) but I haven't had much of a chance to sit down, or to take said pictures.

Rehearsals are going well, though are exhausting as per usual. Because we're doing a musical, rather than a ballet, a lot of the dances are in character shoes (with a 1.5 inch heel), and that is its own special sort of torture.

However, if the title of my post is any indication, that's not what I really came to post about. I am completely and totally frustrated by pointe at the moment.

After my original foot problem, I eased back up onto pointe and was starting to do full classes in them (re-conditioning ones feet to pointe shoes is no fun. Especially when one is still sporting a super awesome bruised toenail on one foot). Then, of course, my luck went downhill. Two weeks ago, I started getting some pain in the Achilles area of my OTHER foot. Saw the doc, and it seems to be a different problem (just some inflammation, likely from overcompensating because of the other foot), so I'm on a heavy dose of anti-inflammatories and need to ice, etc. Luckily the doctor said I could still do pointe, as long as I didn't have pain.

Well, I don't have pain, exactly, but it feels weird. I do have some aching in the mornings, so I'm not sure what the deal is. In the meantime, I've also totally lost all my strength (or at least that's what it feels like), and have suddenly become hyperaware of my shoes, and how TINY the platform is. I mean...there's no wiggle room to get onto pointe like there is in a shoe with a wider platform (i.e. the Bloch Heritage I was wearing for awhile). I'm either on, or not, and that's sort of petrifying because if I miss? I'm down...I could fall, or sprain an ankle or whatever. Or at least I'm paranoid about doing so.

Also? Now both my big toes are bruised, which makes me wonder if the RPs are right for me (whimper). Between the platform and the bruised toe, I'm thinking I may have to go on a shoe hunt again, which does not thrill me in the slightest. UGH.

#dancerproblems, am I right?

Friday, October 3, 2014

In which I am a weakling.

I've always been of the opinion that dancers are strong, and therefore (as a dancer) I probably have more strength than the average person.

Apparently I am not nearly as strong as I supposed. In fact, I would venture to say that I am pathetically weak. This is a slightly distressing development.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I've started taking some aerial silks classes. I expected it to be difficult, because I knew going in that I have no arm/upper body strength. I didn't expect to discover that I have absolutely no core strength, and lack some degree of leg strength (specifically the inner thighs...which was unexpected to say the least since I try to be conscious of using my turnout muscles in ballet class).

I have a perfectionist sort of personality, so its frustrating for me when I'm not automatically good at something. Silks is something I am not automatically good at. Everyone else is class is able to climb, wrap their feet in without hands, and hang upside down, while I'm still down on/near the ground (the wrapping is easy, the holding myself up with my arms is not).

Last night, I was doing a splits maneuver (close to the ground), and while I'm able to get a great split (even the teacher said, "Your splits are amazing!") I don't have the strength to get OUT of it (lots of inner thighs and arms involved). Ugh. The frustration of it is simultaneously making me think, "Maybe this isn't for me, I should quit," and "Screw this, I am going to do ALL the strength training at home."

Since I've already shelled out the money for an 8 week long intensive for the silks, apparently my option is the latter. While watching my struggle out of the split, the teacher said, "I have homework for you: STRENGTH TRAINING." Later, she gave everyone the rundown on things to do at home that would help. This basically consists of planks, sit ups, push ups, and ALL THE PULL UPS.

My specific homework? Actually DO the homework. Ha.