Name: Bethany Keats
Dance Style: Ballet
When did you start doing ballet as an adult?
I started as a beginner adult when I was 26, which was term 3, 2012.
Did you ever take lessons as a kid?
I never took formal ballet lessons as a kid. As a part of my gymnastics, I had to attend half an hour of ballet-like exercises to help improved my floor routine but I never took proper classes. In fact, I was a bit of a brat in those ‘ballet’ classes as tomboy me thought ballet was ‘too girly’ – although I did keep winning Best Dancer awards at gymnastics for making up my own little dance routines while I waited in line for equipment.
Why did you decide to take lessons as an adult?
I took up ballet as an adult because my long commute to work in Melbourne severely limits my exercise options and I was no longer able to pursue my first love of rowing. Sitting at a desk all day was doing nothing for my posture so I thought I could combine exercise with posture improvement and looked up ballet classes – plus, I figured I could do with a bit of grace!
What is your favourite part about ballet?
I think my favourite part about ballet is the challenge and the personal reward I feel when I achieve goals and look back on how far I’ve come. I also love how I now walk straighter and hold myself better outside of class. The great body it’s giving me is a bonus!
What is your least favourite part?
My least favourite part is probably the frustration I feel when I can’t quite ‘get’ something – frequently related to my lack of flexibility!
Who/What is your ballet inspiration?
Having not grown up with an interest in ballet, there’s no one in particular I look up to. I couldn’t even name a professional dancer until recently!
Do you take any other dance/fitness classes?
While I’d like to do more dance or other fitness classes, I don’t have time to do any more than I currently do.
What advice would you like to give to those who want to start ballet or have just started?
To anyone looking at getting into ballet, you need to remember that the teacher can’t do everything for you. A teacher can help you and guide you but ultimately YOU need to work hard to improve. It may take you longer than you thought it would but you just need to keep trying until one day it falls into place.