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Back to School / Back to Ballet: Find your fresh start this September

Updated: Apr 21, 2020

Student and ballerina by Berenice La Placa

September is here, bringing with it a return to the routine of studying and working – and dancing in regular ballet classes!

Despite it officially being the end of the summer, this time of year is fabulously full of promise. After all, as we welcome the arrival of September we simultaneously enter a new calendar month, a new academic year and a new season…

When we go back to school, university, work and dance classes for the autumn, we are keen to get back to what we know and reconnect with friends and colleagues. And, if you are anything like the Ballet Papier team, you are also eager to show off the fashionable new additions to your wardrobe and commence the countdown to Christmas!

However, September is also the perfect time to establish new habits and enjoy a fresh start.

As dancers and dance lovers, we must learn to appreciate the process of learning to dance because the hard work in the studio never ends. It’s just the same in life more generally – we must learn to live in the moment while finding the courage to reflect upon where we are and where we would like to be. By setting new goals, and striving to follow our dreams, we can enjoy the journey and make progress towards our intended destination.

The renewed sense of optimism that this month brings has inspired the Ballet Papier team to consider how we can all make the most of this “back to school” feeling.

While we would never suggest that anyone should suddenly make dramatic changes or put too much pressure on themselves to be “perfect”, we do love the idea of trying to improve ourselves.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Find ways to be more organised – use a notebook to keep track of important information and try to always pack your bag the night before.

  • Punctuality is important and can help stop you feeling overwhelmed so strive to arrive early – especially for dance class!

  • The little things matter and can change the way you feel so try to put some effort into your outfit and hair every day, even if that just means wearing your favourite top.

  • Improve your concentration in the studio and beyond by drinking more water.

  • Aim to watch more dance, whether at the theatre or online. Why not challenge yourself to discover something new each week?

  • Set aside some time to stretch every day.

  • Take five minutes out of every day to work on your balance – concentrating on balancing is a good way to clear your mind and the improvements to your balance will benefit your dancing.

  • Perform a series of rises onto your demi-pointe every day. Whether you are aspiring to get your first pair of pointe shoes or have been dancing en pointe for years, strengthening your feet, ankles and legs with rises is always a good idea.

  • Be kind to yourself and others by celebrating your own small successes and those of the people around you. We can all succeed together!

How will you make the most of your fresh start this September?

Ballet students (find the different one) by Berenice La Placa

Georgina Butler is a journalist, dance writer and dance teacher based in the UK. She is a First Class Honours graduate of the Royal Academy of Dance and a graduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Visit to read more of her work and follow her on Twitter @GeorginaLButler and Instagram: @glbdancewriter

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