The magic of music and dance is something special and it is a great class to introduce babies and toddler too. The joy of movement is something that we instinctively know and we have all seen little ones move there bodies in response to music or the beat of a toy chiming away. Baby ballet formalises this joy and gives both toddlers and parents a chance to socialise and explore dance. 

Benefits of Ballet and Dance Classes

  • Music is great for developing the brain and helping with pre-maths skills
  • Large gross movement and play improves proprioception and vestibular system. Both of these are important for spacial awareness, balance and posture. 
  • Creative movement and dance helps build core strength and muscle development. Ballet also improves co-ordination in young children.
  • Dance class gives babies and toddlers an opportunity to socialise and learn social skills like turn taking and following instructions. 
  • Dance helps children to become aware of themselves and can help them express their emotions. This is a great form of expression for young children and both boys and girls really benefit from self expression. 

When to start Baby Ballet

So when is the best time to start a baby ballet class? Firstly classes for very young babies and toddlers are not going to be a formal class that starts at the bar. It is more about parents or carers and children moving together while enjoying the sensory feel of dance and music. With this in mind as soon as your baby starts to sit up and crawl you can start some form or baby ballet. Many classes start at 6 months old and are a great way to bond with your baby. 
If you are looking for a little more dance then when babies learn to walk and can toddle about independently then baby ballet is a great option. Don't expect your little one to be pointing their toes and running on tiptoes from the off. These skills are tricky for adults and take time. All baby ballet classes are run by dance teachers who structure the class in a very age appropriate way and each child develops at their own pace. The point of baby ballet is to enjoy dancing and moving with joy. 
Pre-schooler's are a prime age for trying out ballet classes. They are old enough to have gained some control over their limbs and often enjoy the social interaction that a class gives them. It is also a great way to gently get them ready for school and developing important skills like listening and following instructions. They gain confidence and independence during these classes. 

What to Wear to Baby Ballet

While it can be cute to dress your little ballerina in a flouncy pink tutu or white t-shirt and black leggings there is not usually a requirement to spend lots of money on a uniform. Each class will have their own guidelines but generally clothes that are easy to move in are best. Clothes that won't get in the way of arms and legs are idea. Ballet shoes come in small sizes but again often barefoot is fine. Any of our soft sole baby shoes work well as a pair of indoor slippers that can be worn for dance class. The sweetest little fairy ballerina baby shoe has just been added to our soft sole rangeand can be used for baby ballet as well as worn as an indoor shoe elsewhere. The lightweight and flexible design is ideal for babies and toddlers new to walking and the non-slip suede sole is the perfect middle ground. 

So do a little search of your local classes and I am sure you will find a baby ballet class as they are really growing in popularity. Sign up for a trial class and give it a go. You may find that your baby and toddler needs a few classes to settle in and find their feet so don't be discouraged if they don't leave your side the whole class, that is completely normal. Leading experts in pre-school ballet does an introductory offer of 3 class trial for £20 as they realise that one class is often not enough to get a feel at such a young age. 

Happy Dancing, 
The Dotty Fish Team