What Age Can a Child Start Ballet?

Ballet is a beautiful and expressive art form that has captivated audiences for centuries. Many parents ask me “What age can a child start ballet?” and whether it’s the right choice for them. As the founder of Laud Ballet School, I have witnessed first-hand the transformative power of ballet in the lives of young dancers. In this blog post, I will address the question, “At what age a child should start ballet?” and provide insights into the various ballet classes and programs we offer at Laud Ballet School. Jo Laud

When is it the Right Age for a Child to Start Ballet?

At Laud Ballet School, ( a school registered with the Royal Academy of Dance) we believe in providing opportunities for ALL and that can include 80 year olds who’ve always wanted to learn or children as young as 2 ½ years old who want to explore movement and music and all points (or should that be pointe’s) between. As children grow and develop we offer a comprehensive range of classes catering to various age groups and skill levels. Ballet offers numerous physical, social, and emotional benefits for children and adults alike, and we strive to create a nurturing and supportive environment for our students’ growth. Whether you’re a beginner, a seasoned dancer, or someone with a lifelong dream, our ballet classes and programs cater to individuals of all ages and aspirations. Join us at Laud Ballet School and embark on an inspiring ballet journey that will enhance your life in countless ways.

Laud Ballet School & RAD Age requirements

As RAD Registered teachers we will identify when a candidate is ready to take a class and move up a grade however the very earliest we would recommend starting a class would be  2 ½ years.  From age 2½ we have Twinkle Toes and Fancy Feet. These two groups offer ideal classes tailored for our youngest students to provide their introduction to ballet before the established grades and exams. See more detail below.

Twinkle Toes & Fancy Feet2½ – 4½
Classes for our younger students

Catering to Different Age Groups

At Laud Ballet School, we offer a wide range of classes catering to different age groups and skill levels. Here’s a breakdown of our classes:

  • Twinkle Toes and Fancy Feet: An introduction to dance for children as young as 2 ½ years old. In this class, children learn to explore movement to music using instruments and props.
  • Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) Grades: Ballet classes starting from age 3 ½ and upwards. These classes gradually develop students’ technique, musicality, and performance skills, encouraging their exploration and growth.
  • RAD Vocational Grades: Ballet classes for students aged 11 and above. These classes offer an in-depth study of ballet, preparing students for potential careers in dance.
Pre-Primary in Dance5
Primary in Dance6
Grades 1-57
Grades 6-811
Intermediate Foundation11
Advanced Foundation13
Advanced 114
Advanced 215
Solo Seal15
Discovering Repertoire12
Laud Ballet School RAD Classes

Adult & Advanced Classes

  • Masterclasses: Skills Development & Repertoire: Available for both juniors and seniors, these classes further develop technique, focus on performance skills, and prepare students for more advanced work. Students also study repertoire, learning dances from renowned ballets like The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, and Coppelia.
  • Body Conditioning / Barre Belles: Body conditioning classes are available for both children and adults. These classes are designed to work all muscle groups, improve strength, stamina, and flexibility. They complement students’ training and serve as fantastic keep-fit classes for adults.
  • Adult Ballet: A class for adults of all ages, whether they want to revisit their childhood dance classes or step into a ballet studio for the first time. It’s an excellent opportunity to learn and develop a new skill while staying fit alongside like-minded individuals.
  • Silver Swans [Jo Laud – RAD Licensed Silvers Swans Teacher]: Tailored classes for adults aged 55 and above. Whether they are returning to dance or fulfilling a long-held childhood dream, these classes help improve flexibility, stamina, balance, and overall fitness. They are designed to be fun and enjoyable, keeping participants engaged and active. As one of the first RAD licensed Silvers Swans teachers, I am dedicated to providing an inclusive and inspiring experience.

Qualifications and Experience of Our Ballet Instructors

Our ballet instructors at Laud Ballet School are highly qualified and experienced. They possess not only expertise in dance technique but also in health and safety, including first aid. Our commitment to the well-being and safety of our students is of utmost importance. We have a team of dedicated teachers who create a nurturing and supportive environment for each student’s growth and progress.

Benefits of Learning Ballet for Children and Adults

Ballet offers numerous benefits for individuals of all ages. While it provides physical advantages such as working all muscle groups and improving cardiovascular health, there are many other valuable aspects:

  • Development of Social Skills: Ballet classes foster interaction, teamwork, and cooperation among students.
  • Discipline and Self-Reliance: The structure of ballet classes instills discipline and teaches students how to rely on themselves and their abilities.
  • Working as Part of a Group: Ballet requires synchrony and harmony with fellow dancers, fostering a sense of unity and collaboration.
  • Prioritization and Focus: Ballet training helps students develop the ability to prioritize and focus on tasks, enhancing concentration skills.
  • Increased Confidence: As students progress in their ballet journey, they gain confidence in their abilities and develop a positive self-image.
  • Stress Buster: Engaging in ballet can be a fantastic way to reduce stress and promote mental well-being.

Success Stories and Testimonials

At Laud Ballet School, we take pride in the accomplishments of our students. Here are a few testimonials from parents and adult students:

“My daughters have been attending Laud Ballet School for nearly 3 years. Jo is a top-class professional who cares for her students, teaches them to love dancing, and helps them grow their skills in a fun and safe way. Dancing should be fun first and foremost, and Jo makes sure it is.” – SW

“Jo is such a lovely teacher. She has the patience of a saint, and my daughter loves going every week. Jo clearly loves ballet, and her enthusiasm is infectious. The adult classes are great too!” – CT

“Jo is so supportive and works with all students to the best of their abilities. The working environment is friendly and professional. I’m constantly learning and being inspired throughout each lesson. Could not recommend more!” – LH

“My 3-year-old daughter loves to dance and loves going every Saturday. It’s the highlight of her week.” – VH

“My daughter goes here every week and loves the classes.” – AH

Creating a Nurturing and Supportive Environment

At Laud Ballet School, we prioritise the welfare and support of our students. We maintain an open and supportive approach to teaching, always providing encouragement, support, and a listening ear to address any questions or concerns students may have. Our goal is to create a safe and inclusive space where dancers can thrive and reach their full potential.

Specialised Programs and Performance Opportunities

For aspiring professional ballet dancers, we offer masterclasses that further develop technique, focus on performance skills, and prepare students for more advanced work. These masterclasses also include the study of repertoire from famous ballets, enriching students’ knowledge and understanding of the art form.

We also provide showcase events for families and friends to witness the progress made by our students, giving them opportunities to showcase their skills and talents.

Enrolling in Ballet Classes

If you’re interested in enrolling in our ballet classes, it’s easy to get started. Simply visit our enquiry page, and fill out the simple form to start the process. You can also contact us via WhatsApp via the website if you need additional assistance.

Jo Laud on the radio with Amy Oakden BBC Tees

A radio interview with Amy Oakden of BBC Radio Tees.

I had the opportunity for an unexpected chat with BBC Radio Tees and the wonderful Amy Oakden. I was able to share some of our lockdown experiences, finding an appropriate space for the Ballet School once restrictions were lifted. Always a pleasure chatting with Amy feel free to listen in. Jo

Laud Ballet, Dancing Through Lockdown and Now Back to School

How We Danced Our Way Through Lockdown

There are new rules to be followed which will require social distancing on arrival during and as you leave class.

Students will be required to sanitise hands before and after each class. Floors, barres and any other equipment used during teaching will be thoroughly cleaned after each class.

These measures are necessary to enable the school to function safely and in line with the new compliance requirements set by the Government.

To accommodate these measures, notably social distancing we had no option but to seek new locations large enough to afford the 3m square space per student we are required to work with.

The safety and wellbeing of our students is paramount so we ask that ALL students follow the guidelines and adhere to teachers requests during this period of transition before an ‘ALL clear” and return to a more normal way of teaching can be permitted.

During the initial lockdown we created a YouTube channel with content for ALL classes. The online classes are not publicly accessible but if you’re already engaged with Laud Ballet as a student or parent of a young dancer drop me a text or WhatsApp to 07771 722289 or email and I’ll send you the link.

There is more than one way to “Keep Calm & Ballet On”

Take care,

Jo x

Billingham Community News

IF you have always fancied giving ballet a spin then you might want to hot foot it to the SRC Sports Centre
in Billingham. There, dance instructor Jo Laud is now offering lessons for all age groups from twinkle toed toddlers
to Silver Swans.

“I tend to get more enquiries about the adult classes than any other,” said Jo, who as a Royal Academy of
Dance (RAD) registered teacher has been teaching ballet for more than 15 years.
Describing ballet as a great form of exercise, she said: “For the over 55 age group in particular, there is
research that proves dancing is one of the best things you can do.”
Working just about every muscle group, she said it is good for both the body and mind, and that, along
with the social aspect, can help make people generally feel better in themselves.
One of the first teachers in the country to be licensed by the RAD to teach Silver Swans (over 55s), Jo has been dancing since she was nine.

Training as a child with Anne Jeanes at the Forum, it seems only fitting that she should now be teaching
in the town. With opportunities for everyone from complete beginners to advanced dancers, Jo believes ballet
brings benefits whatever your age. For children she said: “As well as the obvious physical
benefits of dance related exercise, there is the social aspects of being part of a group of friends outside of
school. It also teaches self-reliance, focus and when it comes to balancing dance around homework the
ability to prioritise your time.”
The good news, for both adults and children, is that you can take it up at any age.
Want to know more about the ballet opportunities coming to the SRC Sports Centre on Marsh House

Call 07771 722289 or email for details or to
book your place.

" No one's ever lonely in a dance class"

A quote from Gary Avis
Senior Répétiteur and a Principal Character Artist of The Royal Ballet