Tag: ballet

Ballet Is For Everybody, and Every Age

Ballet is the motherload for health, fitness, strength, and flexibility. However, traditional belief is that ballet is only for children and aspiring young professionals. That simply isn’t true! Adults of every age (and any age) can enjoy the remarkable health benefits of ballet. Ballet is the ultimate fountain of youth, and you are never too old to start taking ballet classes. I know many adults who began their ballet training in their 50s, 60s, and even 70s. This Bonus Episode features professional ballet dancer, teacher, choreographer and all-around great guy, Radoslaw Kokoszka. He shares his remarkable story of becoming a professional ballet dancer as well as his personal philosophy of ballet and dance in general. His unique and gentle approach to teaching ballet to people of all ages...

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My Fixation With Feet

My fixation and fascination with feet started with several years ago when I began studying ballet from an incredible woman, Jayne Persch. She is a teacher with an impressive background and a passion for life-long learning. However, I didn’t get her fixation with feet. And toes. At the beginning of every class, not only did she have us exercise our toes, she had us play with them! Ewe! I didn’t want to touch my feet, or my toes. What did that have to do with ballet class? Pretty much everything, as well as general health and well-being. When your feet hurt, everything hurts. But not only that, it interferes with your ability to feel the floor, stand your ground (so to speak),and messes with your balance, posture, and overall health as well. Here are a few fun facts about feet. 1)....

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Seize The Day

A few days ago I woke up feeling heavy and sluggish. Gingerly I rolled over in bed, got up, and staggered toward the enticing aroma of fresh coffee brewing. Ahhhh, coffee! I followed it into the kitchen where my husband and 3 dogs greeted me with wagging tails and a cheery “Good Morning!” Easy for them to say. Eventually the coffee worked its magic well enough for me to give everyone a pat on the head (including my husband) before going down to my girl cave to get some work done. I also had to clean the kitchen, get dinner in the crock pot, get dressed and head out the door for ballet class. I had a lot to get done, and I was in a crappy mood. I made sure I took my bad mood with me as I made my way downstairs. But something funny happened. All of a sudden my creative juices began...

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Ballet Bourbon Balls

Just in case you need a snappy new recipe for your New Year festivities, I have a treat for you! This bourbon ball recipe is from one of my ballet teachers from years ago and is a twist on the traditional rum balls. Every holiday season, my teacher would come to the ballet studio armed with paper plates of Christmas cookies. Her baking skills were surpassed only by her phenomenal dancing and teaching abilities. No matter how hard we tried to resist the temptation of these tasty treats that were certain to wreak havoc on our ballet bodies, the minute she pulled the cellophane off of the plates and the smell wafted across the dance floor, we all folded like a deck of cards. Her Bourbon Balls were my personal favorites, and after relentlessly pestering her for the recipe she finally capitulated....

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You’re Only Too Old If You Think You Are

When I was in college I began taking ballet classes. Everyone laughed at me, because I was “too old” to start dancing. Ballet was for children or aspiring professionals, not adults who were stuck with the freshman fifteen. I ignored the naysayers and went to ballet class anyway. Funny, everyone stopped laughing when they saw the results. After enjoying a rewarding career as a respiratory therapist, I decided to go back to school and pursue a career in physical therapy. Once again the naysayers came out in full force. The application process is too long and arduous. The competition is too fierce. I wasn’t smart enough. And my personal favorite—I was too old. And yet again, I ignored the naysayers and went through the grueling application process. I graduated from Colorado University with...

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Sticks and Stones, and Broken Bos

Sticks and stones may break your bones. As a martial artist, I know this to be true, because I personally experienced it first hand. I once broke a bone in martial arts, but it wasn’t my own. It belonged to my partner. It’s a long story, and perhaps I’ll share it someday. Although I love martial arts, I haven’t been training at all over the past twelve months. At least not in the traditional way, at the dojo and with partners. Between running a business, publishing a book, and keeping up with life, I’ve been pretty busy these days. However, I have been able to keep up with my ballet training. I am fortunate to study ballet with a remarkable woman who has a strong Tai Chi background, as well as many other incredible accomplishments. The woman is amazing! Jayne doesn’t teach a traditional...

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A different kind of family Christmas….

Everyone has their Christmas traditions and time they spend with friends and family. Our Christmas tradition is simple; my husband and I spend a quiet Christmas together. But when my mother-in-law took a turn for the worst and my husband left town on the 23rd, my plans for Christmas suddenly and dramatically changed. No quiet Christmas Eve dinner at home. No Christmas Day champagne brunch at the Brown Palace. My Christmas just got thrown a curve ball. I knew I would be bombarded with invitations if my friends knew I would be alone on Christmas. However, I really didn’t want to be pulled into someone else’s dysfunctional family Christmas. Nor did I want to go to a movie and go out for Chinese food. I figured sitting at home watching old movies sounded like my best choice. Then I...

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And the journey continues….

It takes a tremendous amount of courage for a woman to walk into a testosterone infested  Dojo and begin training. It also takes an enormous amount of trust. I had neither. I was scared to death for the first two years. However, the guys were incredibly tolerant, gentle and patient with me. Most of the time I was the only woman in class, and they dutifully took turns working with me. I thought that was awfully magnanimous of them. I soon discovered that it was because I was prettier and smelled better than any of the guys, even on my worst day. They had plenty of opportunities to work with each other, and they seemed to enjoy tossing me around for a change. Even though I was enjoying the classes, I was still incredibly intimidated. I was a good student, not because I was interested in going...

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