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6 Easy Snack Ideas for Dancers

This weekend I sat down with our friend, Kristin, for some snack talk! ;) You might recognize Kristin from a couple vlog videos of mine. Not only is she a great dancer, she's also a registered dietician. Since a lot of talk in our community lately has been about balancing work and family and ballet class, I thought it would be helpful to share some quick, easy, & healthy snack options for our crazy on-the-go schedules! We filmed a video with more details of each snack if you fancy getting your info that way :)

1.  Z U C C H I N I  C H O C O L A T E  C H I P  M U F F I N S
These muffins are an easy snack that will stay good through the week! Try making them in normal muffin/cupcake size and also in bite size! Kristin found & modified this recipe, using sour cream instead of greek yogurt, and adding 4 tablespoons of ground flax seen in place of flour for extra Omega-3s.

2.  G R A N O L A  B A R S
There are tons of granola bar options out there, so Kristin suggests finding a couple that you like the most and have them on hand. The ones we picked are: fig bars, granola cookie/cracker with peanut butter, cheese & crackers (cream cheese w/ chive pictured), & a trail mix bar.

3.  P E A N U T  B U T T E R ,  N U T E L L A ,  &  B A N A N A  W R A P
This is a slightly "heavier" well-balanced snack with protein, fat and carbs. Cut a large tortilla in half, spread nutella & peanut butter on it, top with slices of banana, and roll it up!

4.   C H O C O L A T E  M I L K  W I T H  F R U I T
Horizon makes an 8oz. pouch of chocolate milk making it really easy to get a serving of dairy, protein, and carbs. Enjoy it with a piece of fruit for an even more well-balanced snack. (tip: Kristin loves to drink a glass of chocolate milk as a recovery snack after class!)

5.   T U N A ,  C R A C K E R S ,  &  C H E E S E
Another good protein snack is to top crackers with tuna and/or cheese. You can switch this up by using saltine crackers, multi-grain crackers, different varieties of cheeses etc. This also works well with deli meat in place of tuna.

6.   T R A I L  M I X
Probably the easiest of all the snacks - a custom trail mix. We've made ours with an assortment of nuts (pecans, peanuts, pecans, pepitas), pistachios, cranberries & dried blueberries, dried banana, and dry dates. Mix all of these in a jar of choice to keep sealed at home or at work.

If you have any other great snack options you'd like to share, leave them in the comments below! Watch the video version of this post right here:

I hope everyone is having a happy and healthy year so far, as we inch our way into Spring!



Struggles of the Adult Ballet Life

As some of you know from my Instagram post last week, I recently had a meltdown trying to balance too many things going on in my life right now! I'm wearing a lot of hats as it is, but this past month or so was particularly crazy. My breaking point was when I found myself crying over absolutely everything and over absolutely nothing!

The cherry on top is: I'm a perfectionist. So when it comes to creating content for Ballerinas By Night, I tend to put things off until I feel like it's the most perfect little package it could be. I don't advise being this way! Haha :) Somehow my brain managed to clear enough space to give me a breakthrough thought after my meltdown that made me realize: I don't act like a perfectionist in ballet class. In fact, it's the one place in my life where I crave the process of going for it and perfecting after. So I thought, why in the world am I not talking about this with our Ballerinas By Night community??! I know we are all balancing so many things and then on top of that all we want is at least one night a week to feel like a ballerina. And sometimes that feels like an impossible task.

So in complete contrast to my perfectionist ways, I set down my darn camera and just chatted about this. It was completely unplanned, and I brought up some of your thoughts from the comments on Instagram.

I hope this can spark a discussion and encourage each other to support everyone in their dance journey - we are all on different paths and each path is worth celebrating, so let's all take a breath, and appreciate where we are instead of where we want to be! My casual, chatty video is below :)

All the love,


Perfect Fit Pointe Review!

As I mentioned in our Gift Guide video in December, I have been eager to get my hands on the latest in ballet accessory tech: a custom mold shoe insert by Perfect Fit Pointe!

The idea is that this special putty material will mold around your toes and the box of your pointe shoe, and then harden kind of like a rubber ball, so that you have some bendy support. The putty is meant to distribute itself naturally, therefore alleviating your pressure points. Did I find that it worked? Heck yes!

In the kit you get two sets of the putty (one white and one green for each foot), a pair of cloth covers, plastic sheets for the molding process, and a cute pouch to keep it all in.

To start, you take one jar of the green putty and one of the white, and mix them together with your fingertips. Then you place the mixed putty over the tops and tips of your toes and cover with the cloth piece.

Before you put your pointe shoe on, you'll want to put the plastic piece over your toes so that the oils from the putty don't bleed into your shoe. Then you'll want to work through demi pointe and full pointe -- since I have a longer second toe there were special instructions for the modeling process. 

When you're done you have a completely custom mold of your toes inside your pointe shoe!

I have found that these inserts are more comfortable and more supportive than my previous set up of a regular toe pad and a gel cover over my second toes. I am seriously impressed with this stuff! If you want to hear more about my review and molding process, check out the video review on YouTube! Let me know in the comments if you have tried this insert and whether or not you like it!

January Corrections

Hi everyone!

I'm going to attempt a monthly video series this year where toward the end of each month I share some (or all) of the corrections I've gotten that month. I've been feeling like I want to get back to the root of where our channel started, which was technique help, but as I talked about in this video I've been struggling the past couple of years with finding any improvements with my own work to pass along help to you all.

Since I've been feeling better, I've been making improvements and starting to feel back to my normal self so I'm excited to pass along any tips that click with me.

In this first video of the series I go over:

  • An alternative grand pliĆ© option for my fellow bad knee peeps
  • (Getting into) CoupĆ© balance
  • Keeping those arches lifted
  • Arabesque promenade
  • Using your eyes for quick direction changes
  • Squaring off your body between movement changes
  • Arm placement in fifth
  • Getting bigger jumps in grand allegro
I packed in a lot, and as this is the first of this type of video, I may find a better way to structure it as I go. And let me know if this feels like too much info in one video or if you like it!

- Jana

Holiday Break Workout Schedule

The holidays are here! That probably means you are out of class for a while. Sometimes, though, it can also mean the one time we have extra time, we don't have classes!

If you are looking to work at home, here's a schedule of our videos you can use as a guide to keep some dancing going.

This is made to cover a two week span. Skip a day, move it around, do whatever works for you!

Here are links to all the videos listed:

Adult Ballet Barre
Adagio Combo for Center
Pirouette Combination
Daily Ab Workout
Basic Ballet Barre
Mid-Class Barre Stretch
Strength Building Center Pointe Combos
Warm Up Class Demonstration
Pre-Pointe/Pointe Exercises

Basic Ballet Barre Video

If you saw my Ballet Class When Traveling video you'll know that I started a new job at the beginning of this summer. I had to go out of town for two weeks to train and after getting home, my new schedule made it tough to make it to class on time. It had been about a month without class before I got back into the studio and, boy, did my body feel it. I consider myself an advanced adult ballet dancer and some of my classes are very fast paced and difficult. I love it, but coming back from some time off I felt like my body needed a minute to catch back up. I asked Abby about doing a super basic ballet barre to help get the muscles and placement going again and she filmed this fantastic ballet barre for everyone!

Abby and I are both very strong believers in going back to the basics at no matter what level you are. Everything you do in ballet builds off of the basics, which is a fantastic thing - no matter what happens, the basics are always there for you. So whether you are just starting ballet, starting back to ballet, coming back from time off or injury, or just want to slow things down, this video is here for you! Give it a "thumbs up" and leave a comment if you enjoy it! - Jana

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New "Find a Studio" feature!

Inspired by Jana's Ballet Class When Traveling video, we've added a "Find a Studio" page here on our blog to help adults find good studios to take class! This could be helpful if you're traveling and want to keep up with class, or if you're looking for a long-term home studio. We are asking for your help though! If you have a recommendation for a studio with great adult ballet classes, leave a comment on the Find a Studio page with the name of the studio, its location and website, and we'll include it on the page for everyone to see!

We hope this will be a helpful resource for the community! Thank you all!