Pointe/Pre-Pointe Information 2019-REVISED 5/9/2019
AT SDA STUDIOS-for pre-pointe and pointe, you MUST take TWO ballet classes per week to be strong enough and THIS RULE REMAINS IN PLACE UNTIL YOU LEAVE SDA!! This is for the safety of your body. Dancers might be in pre-pointe for 6 months to a year (taking 2 ballet classes the same amount of time before joining pre-pointe) before getting pointe shoes, but every dancer progresses differently, some move faster than others. Additionally, you must make up a missed ballet class, your attendance in your weekly ballet classes will be taken into account when being evaluated to go to pre-pointe, plus: classroom behavior/etiquette, overall body strength, leg strength and musculature, foot/arch shape, placement of pelvis and being able to hold your abdomen in when dancing and AGE...you must be at least 10, but 11 is much more common to begin the process of pointe. HOW DO I ADD PRE-POINTE CLASS TO MY SCHEDULE? Preparing to dance on pointe is long and tedious. You must prove you are patient, serious about it and dedicated enough to spend the necessary amount of time working towards it. Here is how to begin the pre-pointe class addition:
Admittance to pre-pointe is in August or January only. In order to start pre-pointe class, you must be taking 2 ballet classes for a minimum of 18 weeks of classes or 1/2 of an SDA year. Then you may email to ask for an evaluation of readiness and approval to begin pre-pointe class.
Conduct yourself according to all SDA etiquette guidelines with regards to class attire, behavior and effort. In ALL your classes, but most especially ballet classes. Take all corrections constructively and work on your technique and PLACEMENT. Strong correct placement is a must for pre-pointe admittance.
Ballet class attendance must be close to 100% to be evaluated to join pre-pointe: if you miss a class, you MUST try hard make it up-be sure to fill out a make-up class note.
YEAH! I'm in pre-pointe class, now what?
While in pre-pointe class, you must get a Theraband and complete weekly exercises at home and bring your pointe sheet in every 2 weeks completely filled out with exercises completed in full. THIS MUST BE DONE and not completing sheets can hold you back and prevent you from joining pointe sooner.
Continue with your 2 ballet classes as above and continue to demonstrate excellent SDA etiquette.
Pointe evaluations will only be assessed in late Aug/early Sept and again in late Jan/early Feb. If you’re evaluated and considered not ready, you will be re-evaluated at the next scheduled time.
Pointe evaluations are a 2 week long process and exactly when they are held is determined by your instructor at her discretion. They take up the whole class and are NOT done privately.
Ballet class attendance must be close to 100% to be evaluated: if you miss a class, you MUST try hard make it up.
Theraband for Pre-pointe and Pointe Theraband color is BLUE for SDA dancers. $9 per band, CASH only (no checks or credit cards). Write name on it with an ink pen towards one end. Bands can last up to 10,000 uses, but do get tears and break if not cared for properly or overstretched beyond 300% elongation. Cleaning: Immerse the band or tube in fresh clean water in a sink or under a running faucet. Rub a small amount of mild hand soap over the wet band or tube and then rinse in fresh water. Lay flat to dry or drape the band or tube over the back of a chair or similar object & allow to thoroughly dry. Once dry, rub a small amount of talcum, baby powder, corn starch, or similar powder over the surface of the band or tube to prevent sticking.
I've got permission to get my Pointe Shoes-NOW WHAT? Learning to dance on pointe is painful and difficult-we said this before. You must CONTINUE to prove you are patient, serious about it and dedicated enough to spend the necessary amount of time working towards it IN YOUR 2 (or more) BALLET CLASSES. Here are some other things to know about what you can expect AFTER YOU GET YOUR POINTE SHOES AND DANCE IN THEM!!
MAKE AN APPOINTMENT to be fitted at Diana's! They have the largest selection for 1st time pointe dancers.
DO NOT SEW NEW SHOES UNTIL CHECKED FOR FIT BY MISS MARY OR THEY CAN’T BE RETURNED! Sometimes your instructor will disagree with a fitting and you have to go back to try for a better fit.
YOU MUST CONTINUE the Theraband weekly exercises at home and bring your POINTE SHEET in every 2 weeks-OR NO POINTE SHOES MARY BE WORN IN POINTE CLASS.
TRY to make up missed pointe classes-taking 2 per week isn’t too much pointe and won’t harm you.
What WILL harm your legs and feet? Wearing your pointe shoes AT HOME-this is a NO-NO! We can tell when you’ve been wearing them at home-first they break down/ get soft very quickly and they have a distinct look on the satin from non-slip flooring that’s not dance flooring! WEAR ONLY TO CLASS!
Your feet will hurt and you may get BLISTERS! Research home remedies for these and be prepared with toe tape, Band-aids and antibiotic ointment as needed…sometimes your toe nails will bruise from shoes worn too much, improper fit or being too worn out. Check under your toe polish every now and then and keep your toe nails neatly clipped. YOUR FEET ARE YOUR DANCE INSTRUMENT-PLEASE TAKE CARE OF THEM!
FEET HURT A LOT MORE THAN NORMAL? CAN’T GET YOUR SHOES ON EASILY? You have either outgrown them or they are completely broken down and you need new ones!
NEED NEW SHOES? BRING YOUR MOST PREVIOUS PAIR WITH YOU TO ALL SUBSEQUENT FITTINGS!
POINTE SHOE FITTINGS-THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO! IMPORTANT READING-DON'T SKIP THIS!!
Your teacher says you’re ready for pointe shoes, can you go buy them on your own? YES! Call Diana’s Dancewear and schedule a fitting when convenient. Diana’s Dancewear: 792-0970 (call for hours). Diana’s has the largest selection for beginners to try shoes.
How long will the fitting take? Fitting times vary for each individual dancer. Appointments are typically scheduled for 30 minutes but could take as much as an hour or more. You should allow for 1-1.5 hours; this is not something you can rush through. The process goes quicker if you arrive a little before your scheduled time, have your tights on and are ready to start on time. Also, your dancer needs to be able to verbalize how the shoes feel once they have them on. This isn’t something mom is going to be able to describe for them!
What do I need to wear? Ladies MUST wear convertible tights for the fitting AND have toenails trimmed neatly. If you don’t have your tights, buy a pair; fittings should NOT be done with footies provided by the store. (avoid this-WEAR YOUR OWN BALLET TIGHTS!)
What happens at the fitting? You will need to put on a pair of toe pads that you will buy and pull your tights down over them and start trying on pointe shoes. The shoes will be VERY STIFF and TIGHT. They must support your entire body weight safely and so must NOT be bought with room to grow into. They shoe will squeeze your toes through the metatarsal; but if you feel pressure on your big toe (like it’s pushing into the floor) the shoe is too wide and your foot is slipping down in the shoe-this is BAD! After trying MANY different brands and sizes, you will settle upon a pair that feels the best.
How much is this going to cost? Parents be prepared to spend approximately $100-$130 for shoes, toe pads, spacers, elastic and ribbons. Payment methods vary - some do not accept checks. Please ASK when you call to schedule your appointment!
What happens if they don’t have your size shoes? Sometimes the stock is low, so the store will order a pair. However, if you decide NOT to purchase at the time of the time of the fitting, be prepared to pay a ‘Fitting Fee’ of $25 or more. Pointe shoe fittings are very time consuming for these businesses and it’s not fair to the store to set aside time for an intensive ‘free’ consultation only for you to take your business elsewhere or online to get the shoes.
You have your shoes, can you go home, sew them and practice in them? NO! VERY IMPORTANT, DO NOT SEW ANYTHING onto shoes, nor make ANY marks on them (initialing them or wearing them around the house, yes even on carpet), or do anything to the pointe shoes until you show them to your instructor for final approval on the fit. After that is accomplished check out the videos BELOW to see how to sew and tie your ribbons!
NEED A NEW PAIR? ALWAYS TAKE YOUR OLD ONES WITH YOU TO A SUBSEQUENT FITTING!!!
HAVE YOUR SHOES? HERE ARE THE VIDEOS OF HOW TO SEW AND TIE YOUR RIBBONS SDA STYLE!