Ballet for Weight Loss
There are people who choose ballet for weight loss. I think swimming still comes in first for calories-burnt-per-minute.
Ballet is a lot harder to do for many reasons. Some of those translate into calorie burning, and some don't.
Ballet is an art. It engages the spirit, mind and body. I'm not expecting that many swimmers don't experience the same thing, but I'm speaking about it as a performing art, and an art that requires soulfulness for an audience to want to watch. No offence to swimmers.
Ballet is resistance training. You are using your body weight, bench pressing with every plie, every fondu, every releve and every jump. The ramifications for bone density and growth (if you're still growing) are significant.
Resistance creates strength. Pushing into the floor for every tendu, degage, grande battment and jump using any sliding motion, is resistance.
Wearing pointe shoes at the barre, is resistance.
Doing a series of changement from a grande plie, as is taught in some boys' classes, is resistance.
In a Cecchetti adagio, pirouettes are done from a grande plie, that's using resistance.
A dancer weighing 110 pounds burns 63 calories every 15 minutes in a ballet class. That's 360+ calories in an hour and a half.
So if you are trying to lose fat, or maintain your current weight, and you do a ballet class three times a week, you must eat 360 calories less on the days you don't do a class, unless there is other exercise that would compensate for that.
Walking 3000 steps burns very few calories - yet takes at least 23-25 minutes. Depending on your weight, you will burn 25-35 calories. Easier not to eat them! And yet, walking has other fantastic benefits.
So whatever your choice of exercise, enjoy it, eat well, get exactly the right fit in your ballet shoes and pointe shoes at the ballet store, and feed your soul at the theater when your favorite ballet company is in town!
Dianne M. Buxton is a graduate of the National Ballet School of Canada. She taught at, and choreographed for The National Ballet School, York University, and George Brown College, in Canada, and taught at Harvard University in the U.S. Click here for ballet shoes, pointe shoes, strengthening exercises, dance news, dance books, ballet forum,diet and health for dancers,DVD's and more.
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