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Learn ballet from scratch

Online beginner ballet class for adults

Learn the basics from the comfort of your home

One of the hardest things about starting ballet as an adult is finding a class that caters for complete beginners.

Even though it takes at least a couple of years to move from the beginner stage, you only spend a short time in the absolute beginner stage.  That’s the stage where you go from having no idea about what goes on in a ballet class, to at least being able to understand the basic movements and language.  So if you’re a complete beginner going into a ‘beginner ballet class’ where everyone else has been doing the class for three months or more, you can end up feeling a bit out of your depth.

That’s where my Introduction to Ballet Course for Adults comes in …

It’s a way for adults to learn ballet that won’t make you feel self-conscious about your age, size, or lack of experience.  You can do the course at home to build confidence before you go into a class with other people.  You can learn at your own pace and fit it in around your schedule, practicing at a time and place that suits you.

After completing the course, you’ll be armed with the knowledge, skills, and confidence to go into a beginner ballet class and hold your own.

Sounds great, right?

But before I start filming the videos for this online course, I want to make sure that people like you would want to buy it.

Are you ready to express your interest in the course? Fill in the form below to let me know that you’re interested in the course, and to make sure you’re notified as soon as the course is available.

Don’t worry, I know what it’s like to be inundated with emails just because you’ve shared your email address.  I promise not to bombard you with emails that aren’t about the beginner ballet course, or share your email address with anyone else.

Let me know if you're interested ..

Would you like to know a bit more about what the course will include?

Here’s what I’m thinking …

The course will be delivered in 7 'how to' lessons

Support materials

In addition to the ‘how to’ lessons, you’ll also receive:

  • A practice video to accompany each lesson
  • A warmup and cool down video
  • Glossary of terms (the French name of each step and what it means)
  • Guide about safe dance practice
  • Access to my class playlists, which are on Spotify, so you can access the music I use in class (I don’t use traditional ballet music, but instead choose from a range of music, which someone described to me as ‘normal music, the kind you might listen to yourself’. It includes classic hits, alternative music, jazz, blues, and rock n roll, music from TV and movies … and whatever takes my fancy really)

Lesson 1


At the end of this lesson, you’ll have an understanding of the:

  • Structure of a ballet class
  • Fundamental concepts, such as the language used and basic musicality
  • Rationale behind the exercises (ie why each one is important in ballet)
  • How to stand, including the basic positions of the feet and arms

Lesson 2

First exercises at the barre

At the end of the lesson you will have:

  • Learnt how to perform three basic exercises at the barre that form the basis of many other ballet steps
  • developed an understanding of concepts that will help you improve your posture, use your feet correctly, and balance easily

Lesson 3

First exercises in the centre

At the end of this lesson you will have:

  • Learnt how to perform three basic exercises in the centre
  • Developed an understanding of use of direction in ballet and how to transfer your weight so it’s easier to learn and perform ballet movements

Lesson 4

Developing at the barre

At the end of this lesson you will have:

  • Learnt three more fundamental barre exercises
  • Developed an understanding of safe dance, maintaining turnout while moving

Lesson 5

Developing in the centre

At the end of this lesson you will have learnt:

  • Three new arm positions
  • Three new ballet steps for centre practice

Lesson 6

Introduction to demi-pointe

At the end of this lesson you will have learnt:

  • two different ways to go onto demi-pointe (that is standing on the balls of your feet with your heels high)
  • a key linking step
  • how to do a ballet waltz
  • when and how to stretch so that you avoid leg pain after being on demi-pointe
  • how to engage your core muscles to improve balance

Lesson 7

Introduction to small jumps (petit allegro) and wrap-up

At the end of this lesson you will have:

  • learnt a foot warmup to perform before jumping and two easy small ballet jumps
  • developed understanding of how to avoid injury when jumping and the different types of ‘steps of elevation’

We will also review what has been covered in the course, and what you can do next to continue learning ballet

Sound good?

To let me know you’re interested in this kind of course, and to make sure you get notified as soon as the course is available, make sure you fill in the form below:

Let me know if you're interested ..

Who is this course for?

Complete beginners (no experience)

People who have already done some ballet but never really learnt the fundamentals

People who haven’t done ballet for 20-30 years (or more) and want a refresher

Beginner ballet students who want to gain a more in-depth understanding of technique, rationale, terminology, and safe dance.

About me

Jo McDonald teaches dance classes for adults at Move Through Life Dance Studio

Hey there!

My name is Jo McDonald, and I am the owner and founder of Move Through Life Dance Studio.  A dance studio that offers dance classes to adults so they can move through life, no matter their age, size, shape, or previous dance experience.

I got into teaching ballet to adults because of my passion to keep dancing throughout my life.  I soon discovered that there were lots of others who wanted the same thing.  And they didn’t want to have to do classes in a children’s ballet school where they were much older than everyone else in the class.

I started Move Through Life in 2004, initially as a project-based performance group, but soon I was offering dance classes as well.

The thing that drives me is the desire to give all adults a way to learn ballet (and other dance styles) that doesn’t make them feel self-conscious about their age, size or lack of experience.  I currently offer in-studio ballet classes that have diversity in the age and shape/size of participants, and offer a range of levels so people can find a class that suits them.  I supplement the teaching I do in class with videos to teach new steps and practice combinations that we are working on in class.

One of the things I love the most is introducing people to ballet for the first time, and taking those first steps with them as they begin to explore this beautiful artform and amazing way to exercise their mind and body.  I also love the way that in the ballet studio, age differences melt away (as long as it’s not a dozen 17 year olds and one person aged over 30), and people in their 20s mix with other in their 70s, and they all connect with and support each other.  They are all there to take out some time for themselves.

I started dancing at the age of three with calisthenics, but didn’t start ballet until I was 13 years old.  I had to dance with kids way younger than me, so I know how much determination and drive it takes to keep going to classes when you feel awkward because you’re the oldest student in the room, by years!!

I worked so hard I managed to be accepted into the full-time Bachelor of Arts in Dance in Adelaide. But I only completed 6 months before deciding to defer.  Like so many dancers in their late teens and early 20s, I turned my back on dance and pursued other interests.  But once dance is in your soul, you miss it.  I was lucky enough to find a way back into dance, and it has now become my full time occupation – just as I had always dreamed.  The lesson I learnt from that experience is that it is hard to find a way back into dance, and since that time I’ve been determined to give other people like me the same chance.

In my 30s, I completed my technique training with the Imperial Society for Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) at the advanced 2 level with High Distinction.  I hold a Graduate Diploma in Creative Industries (Dance Teaching) from the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), graduating on the Dean’s Merit List.  After that, instead of lamenting the lack of opportunities to develop my technique, artistry, and teaching skills, I brought the best teachers I could find to Move Through Life.  People who have trained and performed with some of the best in the world.  This has given me access to a much deeper understanding of ballet than I had received in my previous training, and I love that I can now share that with as many adults as possible.  I’m now in my mid 40s, and work with adults ranging in age from 20 to mid 70s. I learn an enormous amount from my students and the changes in my own body as I age that has given me expertise in teaching ballet to adults of various ages, and ensuring they can participate in the artform and physical practice of ballet, regardless of any physical limitations that can strike at any age.

How the course will be delivered

Instructional and practice videos

The course will be a set of seven video lessons which cover all the things you’ll need to know to step confidently into a beginner ballet class.  One video lesson will be emailed to you each week, along with a practice video so you can start to develop a practice routine that builds on what you learn each week.

All lessons will be available on a password-protected website, as well as the practice videos and support materials, so you can access then at any time.

Online community

In addition to the emails, videos, and website, there will be a Facebook group for people who have purchased the course, so you can connect with other people going through the same journey as you.

Personalised feedback and support

There will be an option to get in touch with me with questions, and to get feedback on your progress.  For example, we could Skype or you might send a video of yourself performing an exercise from the course so I can give you tips on how to improve and point out any nuances of technique that need to be adjusted.  This extra investment for the upgrade to have personal contact will be $50/half hour (with a discount for Move Through Life members).  I highly recommend the personalised contact because sometimes you don’t know when you are doing something wrong and need a teacher to help you do it correctly.


If delivering this course in studio, it would take at least 12 classes, valued at $25/class, which would come to about $300.  In addition, the course will include the practice videos, other support materials, and the online community.

But that’s not what the investment will be, because I want to make it accessible.

Instead, the investment will be $97 for the full course (instructional and practice videos, support materials, and access to the online community).

There will probably be a higher fee for the personal feedback and support.  I’d love to know what you think that would be worth.

What you can do after finishing the course

Once I have developed the introduction to ballet course, and if it goes well, I’ll be developing more courses so you can continue your journey into the magical world of ballet.  I’ll also be releasing a series of stand-alone videos to teach more advanced steps.

If you live close enough to where we hold Move Through Life’s ballet classes (currently in Seacliff and Glengowrie in South Australia – see our Locations page), you could come and join one of those, if the schedule fits yours.

Or you might like to find another ballet school near you that offers classes for adults.

Let me know if you're interested ..