Is It Too Late To Dance? The Answer is Simple

Is it too late for ME?

That’s the number one question I get here at Dance Advantage. I’ve even given an answer before.

Every person thinks their situation is completely unique. And it is! But that doesn’t necessarily change the answer.

Still, as teachers do, I’ll keep saying it in different ways because every individual processes differently.

My latest inquiry came from a 13-year-old. She said:

I want to dance! Is it too late for me?“I want to know if it’s too late to dance.”

That one has a really simple answer.

It is never too late to dance. You can do that at any time and at any age.

However, I suspect she’s asking if it is too late to perform professionally, or at least get good enough to consider it.

Surprisingly, it’s still a pretty simple answer:

It is absolutely not too late to begin at 13 and become a professional performer (i.e. dance as a primary occupation not a pastime). Many dancers have done this.

What about drastically later? Age 30? 40?? Well, that’s very improbable but I can’t say it’s absolutely impossible.

BUT

Even dancers who begin at 3 or 6 or 9, struggle to make a profession of dance. It has nothing to do with age.

Dance is a difficult lifestyle. Making dance your primary occupation requires more than a little versatility and inventiveness.

Working dancers do many different things to earn a living, and that includes a day job sometimes. The dancers I know, who are not contracted with a large-budget company (of which there are few, especially outside of ballet), make a living in the dance world by dancing for multiple companies, teaching or working other jobs. It’s not a secure lifestyle, and having other skills is often a requirement.

For the few who perform full-time as a profession, it is rewarding but difficult… glamorous at times but more frequently grueling and unglorified.

Here’s the real question:

Will you choose to keep going despite the general and personal obstacles?

Every dancer has personal obstacles. Most dancers have lots of them. They come in all sizes, shapes, and varieties, and they include the very individual ones you are thinking about right now. So, let’s get one thing straight…

Sands of time are running outDancers don’t not become professionals or make dance their life and work because they are ‘too late’.

They don’t become professional dancers because, at some point or gradually over time, and for one reason or another, they choose something else.

Or maybe they just say ‘Yes, please’ when something else chooses them.

Here’s what you need to know about choices:

You have to be educated to make them. You must have an understanding about the level of commitment and training it takes to, for example, make a living as a professional dance performer. If you think that’s what you want to do, learn about your options and learn from the choices others have made to get there, even if you can never replicate them exactly.

“Wrong” choices aren’t always a mistake. We learn and grow when things don’t go as expected. The world won’t end if you make all the “right” choices and still never “make it” as a professional performer. You will choose to keep dance in the window after a slingshot around the moon, or you’ll set your sights on a new destination.

Only you can answer, ‘Will I choose to keep going?’

Today the answer may be YES! and tomorrow it may be UGH! and the next day may be NO.

But if you keep coming back to YES! – if you keep choosing dance, in whatever form it comes (because it’s not just about performing, or even about a career), you are a dancer for life.

That’s why so many refer to dance as a calling – something they are compelled to do no matter what.

Indeed, perhaps it is, but I believe all who are chosen must still decide to heed the calling.

Dance is a choice.

It’s really that simple.

Dancers, other than “Is it too late for me?,” what are your burning questions about a career in dance?
Nichelle (owner/editor)
Nichelle Suzanne is a writer specializing in dance and online content. She is also a dance instructor with over 20 years experience teaching in dance studios, community programs, and colleges. She began Dance Advantage in 2008, equipped with a passion for movement education and an intuitive sense that a blog could bring dancers together. As a Houston-based dance writer, Nichelle covers dance performance for Dance Source Houston, Arts+Culture Texas, and other publications. She is a leader in social media within the dance community and has presented on blogging for dance organizations, including Dance/USA. Nichelle provides web consulting and writing services for dancers, dance schools and studios, and those beyond the dance world.
Nichelle (owner/editor)
Nichelle (owner/editor)
Nichelle (owner/editor)
Nichelle (owner/editor)

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Comments

  1. I loved this! Thank you!

  2. Nichelle, brilliantly put! You know I love this and must share with my students. I was most recently asked this question by a 19 year old who had never done anything at all. I never say never to anyone – there are many, many ways to have dance in your life professionally. While it is extraordinarily unlikely a newbie at 19 will be a ballerina in a major company, that does not mean she can’t dance in another capacity. It really bothers me when I hear teachers discouraging students. You are encouraging yet realistic. 🙂

    ~Leigh

    • Encouraging but realistic is definitely my goal. I want students to be open to the many ways dance can be a part of their life and/or work but find it very important for them to realize just what the work and lifestyle entails. Thanks, as always, for sharing, Leigh!

  3. Wonderful article and a great answer to that thorny question!

  4. For all the teachers out there, I have to point out that there are many and many dance styles where starting from a young age or even in your twenties is not a prerequisite and there have been people of all ages becoming professional performers, teachers, cultural promoters/scholars and otherwise… those are middle eastern dance forms – bellydance and folkloric dances, indian classical dances, flamenco, bollywood, kalbeya, tribal fusion, african dances, etc. I am sure I missed a lot of them, but these are truly refuges for an adult beginner with professional desires simply for the fact that they do not require your joints and bones to be molded for the dance but are adjustable for different body types. There is still a lot of hard work to do and to make up for the lost time, but it is better than trying to stuff yourself in pointe shoes on your 24th birthday. Been there, done that. 🙂

    • You bring up a great point, Maria. Because Dance Advantage focuses on “concert dance” forms, the dance forms you listed don’t always get the mention they deserve! Even within concert dance, there are forms less stringent in terms of body-type and training than ballet and late or even adult starters are not uncommon.

      Working and being paid consistently as a professional dancer in any form, however, is a lifestyle commitment and very few dancers work as performers only… they are still teachers, or hold other jobs, or rely on spousal income, or all of the above. That’s the reality no matter which dance tradition one chooses to pursue.

  5. I danced for a couple of years when I was around 12 an I had a very natural ability for it in different styles such as jazz, ballet, contemporary and modern dance. I passed my exams with flying colours and performed. Around age 15 I gave up for various reasons. One being money. Anyway, the day I left the studio my life was never the same cos I cut dance out of my life completely. Only because it was too heart breaking for me to think “what if”. I dreamt about dance and how naturally it blended with my body and I would always wake up smiling until I realised it wasn’t real. So age 23, I had an epiphany moment when I was in one of my 3 jobs. I said to myself that my body wasn’t designed to do anything other than dance. That night I arranged an audition with the local community college and I got a place on the highest course they offer. Tomorrow I will be entering my second year of university to get my degree in dance. I feel alive again. I am proud of myself constantly for achieving the highest grades possible. Do not let ANYTHING stand in the way of your dreams. Words can not describe what dancing means to me. I haven’t had as many years experience as anyone who I take class with, but you would never tell because I practice and I work harder in every session. I won’t say start with night classes just to be sure, I think you should just thrown yourself in the deep end and do it!! I have not looked back and my future seems very bright. I have a lot of choreographic and dance project on the go through uni. It’s amazing…

  6. Oh, what a great story, Dancerat24. Congrats to you on making your future happen! Very inspiring to read.

  7. “Throw yourself in the deep end”! Especially since a dancer’s career is typically so short, there is no time to spend treading water in the shallow end. As Maria points out there are so many styles of dance to explore. A critical element of dance education is exposure to live performance, and many dance students do not get enough of this – either because they live in places not typically on touring companies’ itineraries, or because they can’t afford it, or they simply are not aware of what is available. Watching clips of dance on YouTube is a poor substitute. Though nowadays the quality and range of dance available on DVD is improving, so it’s possible to get a decent education by watching videos, provided you sit and watch a whole performance the way you would in a theatre, and pay attention to the credits (who composed the music, who is the choreographer and the dancers, who designed the set and lighting, the costumes, who is the conductor, etc.), so that you get the full, rich experience. Parents have to understand that, even if their child is focused on a career in classical ballet, they need to be watching a broad spectrum of dance including modern, jazz, experimental dance theatre, folk dance, tribal, etc. and they need to see the best companies in order to form their tastes properly. Just because you are a gifted dancer doesn’t mean you have a discerning eye and a good taste in dance, and this will reveal itself in the choices you make later in life. All of this can be expensive, but good public libraries often have performing arts collections with dance on DVD, local colleges often host visiting dance troupes at a fraction of the cost of an opera house, and trips to bigger cities can be planned at strategic times during the busy fall or spring dance season so you can cram in lots of live performance in a short time.

  8. Hey Everyone! I’ve been inspired by this website to actually go for my dream of dancing professionally at the age of 23. I was a competitive gymnast and haven’t been dancing my whole life, but quickly fell in love with it when I studied at a 1 year program that had a dance concentration. I’ve decided to commit to pursuing my dream by blogging about my journey for a year. In my blog I’m documenting my ups and downs, highs and lows, my defeats and my achievement in an effort to inspire others to go for their dreams as well. If you would like to check it out my website it beccarooney.wordpress.com/ .

    • I am only twelve but I was a competitive gymnast as well and only “discontinued enrollment in gymnastics” (I don’t like to use the word quit) about a year ago. It has really given me a solid foundation of strength and flexibility to build on in ballet. You can do it!

  9. I realise that this is quite late, but seeing this made my heart flutter a little. I’m thinking of starting dance when I’m 15 or 16, because at 14 certain things are complicated right now. Seeing this made me happy as I’d always love to dance wherever and whenever I could. And now that I know that starting late is fine, I feel more comfortable in pursuing this as a strong passion and doing this as a regular out of school activity.

    Thanks so much.

  10. I have been dancing at the same amature dance school ever since I was six, I’m taking four classes a week at the moment (modern, jazz and ballet) and do core work, stretching and yoga at home. Becoming a professional dancer is all I’ve ever wanted. When I was younger though, I never told anybody about this dream, because I was too shy and afraid. Now I will graduate from high school this year and have to decide whether I’m going to major in Dance or not. If I listen to my heart, there is no doubt: DANCE. I’ve been discouraged a lot though. My parents don’t think it’s wise (economically) and call it a waste of my brains. My balletteacher has told me as well she thinks i’d be better of at university. I’ve tried to convince myself not to want a dance career, but I keep coming back to it. It is the only thing that makes me happy. Could you please give me advice on what I should do? Thank you!

    • Majoring in dance is a smart choice since it provides an academic degree and therefore a platform for advanced degrees should you wish to do so. It sounds as though you do well in school – have you considered a dual major, or exploring dance-related/alternative dance careers that interest you? Parents often worry about the economic wisdom of dance (and it’s not completely unjustified) but they don’t often know about the world of dance-related careers available to those who study dance or are retiring from performance. Sometimes a dual major in another field (or even a major/minor situation) can set you up nicely for one of these careers as you continue to pursue your passion for dance. And it may make your parents feel better to know that your career options are more diverse than dance performance.

  11. Thank you so much! I’m fourteen and started dancing at twelve, and dancing has quickly become what I live for. I would love to pursue a career in dance but many of my dance friends tell me I’ve started too late. So this helped me ease my fears.

  12. Piper,

    I started dancing at 21 and didn’t start training seriously until I was 23. (Actually, it was this article that gave me the courage to pursue dancing) I am now almost 25 and I am dancing in NYC following my dream of being a profrssional dancer. In less than two years I am able to keep up in class with other professionals. Misty Copeland didn’t start until she was 13 and now she is a principle dancer for ABT. If you have the passion, dedication, are willing to put the hard work in, and are able to push past all of the doubt (because it will be there) then anything is possible. If I could give you some advice it would be to find a reason to dance that is bigger than yourself. Dance is not meant to be a selfish thing, but is an art that is meant to be shared with others. If you focus on a cause bigger than yourself then it is easier to keep going. Secondly, do not compare yourself to anyone else. Negative comparison will be detrimental to your dream. Instead measure success based on your personal improvement and look to others as positive inspiration. So keep it up and good luck!

    <3 Becky

    • Becky, I’m honored that this article inspired your courage. I checked out your blog and you’ve had an amazing journey yourself. It’s definitely not something just anyone can do. As you said it takes intense dedication among other things. There are always obstacles to overcome so congrats on not letting any of them stand in your way!

      Piper, looking beyond yourself is great advice, as is the caution of negatively comparing oneself. We have an article on that too: http://www.danceadvantage.net/how-to-stop-comparing/

      Best wishes!

    • Ever since I was a little girl I’ve always loved to dance. I grew up watching my parents do the cha cha and dancing at parties.. My older brother taught my younger brother, cousin and I how to break dance and I got really into it.. One day I was really confident in my self so I wanted to show my brothers and his friend my head spin.. I ended up falling down and slamming onto a table and embarrassed myself.. At that point I was feeling very humiliated and my self esteem went all the way down.. Anyways after that I stopped trying and just watch others danced.. When I was 14 I met this guy and we dated and he was an amazing dancer and tried to teach me a few moves but i felt like I’m too awkward to dance so I stopped trying.. Basically Ive always loved dancing but never had the confidence to keep practicing because I feel like I look really stupid.. Up until today( I’m almost 27) I still love to dance and I’m too shy and not confident enough to do so unless I drink until I have the confidence… What do you suggest I do? Am I too old to try? Should I give up or should I just practice until I don’t feel awkward anymore.. The urge to dance because I want to never went away and all I want to do is feel comfortable enough to do it in front of other people.. I don’t even want to become a professional dancer, I just want to feel comfortable enough to dance in front of anyone anywaywhere and anytime I feel like it.

  13. Hi, I am a very new to the dance scene parent but my 11 year old jumped into hip hop/modern dance with full force in the last year. She has been a very natural dancer since a toddler. If she really wants to pursue dance does she need to have a ballet background as well? How critical is it?
    Thank you for any and all advice.

    • Hi Susie,
      There’s no clear-cut answer to that — it depends on many factors. What I can say is that dancers who are primarily specialists must be virtuosos, the creme of the crop to get consistent work in their field – it’s very elite, very competitive, and in many cases shortlived or unpredictable. The entire field is very competitive so most working dancers work and earn a living because they are versatile, not only in style but often in other skills like teaching, writing, marketing, you name it. There is no roadmap for a dance career – it’s typically graphed as the dancer makes choices and takes opportunities. So, I don’t know if having ballet in her background will prove critical for your daughter but if ballet is an option for her, I would seize the opportunity to try it and become familiar. A good ballet class will build her technique and movement vocabulary in completely different ways than hip-hop (modern dance is a different dance form) and most professionals will be expected to have some knowledge of ballet. It will also give her the chance to exercise patience and discipline (gratification is not instant in ballet) – good qualities in any dancer. I hope that helps in your decision-making!

      • Also, sometimes I’ve discovered when people talk about pursuing dance, they don’t necessarily mean a career. If it’s just about being a better dancer, she could focus on just hip-hop and be great at it. Will ballet improve her hip-hop? Possibly – it wouldn’t hurt it, for sure. But I also think most ballet dancers could benefit from experiencing hip-hop. If you could learn another language, or two, or three, would you do it? I would! Whether or not it’s necessary depends on your goals. Same in dance.

  14. I danced ballet from age 3-15. It was never professional, or close to it for that matter. It was a just for fun, 6h-a-week thing. It was not until I stopped doing it that I realized how much it helped me go through stuff.

    I’m 23 now, and I’ve haven’t dance for 8 years but I find myself missing it more than anything. I really want to go back to it, but I doubt I’ll be any good. I’m hesitant to think it’s not too late.

    Anyways, thank you for this article. It’s a bit of a spec of hope.

    -Adriana

  15. Annie Hannigan says:

    I am a 26 year old woman, recently married and using the GI Bill to obtain a political science degree. I quit dancing three years before I enlisted in the military at age 20. I got out of the military a year ago and my craving to choreograph modern to dance ballet and hip hop has only gotten stronger since I quit. I have a lot of ideas but I am way out of practice, out of dancing shape due to hip surgeries, and seemingly out of options. I am now recovered from my surgeries and uncertain how to proceed. Good adult classes are not common and they are expensive (and likely unavailable where my husband and I are likely to move to) and I have forgotten most of my dance vocabulary. I would appreciate any advice you give.

    • Hi Annie, it’s true that adult opportunities vary wildly depending upon your location. However, some small regions can surprise you and some large cities offer a disappointing number of options. Look at local universities or community colleges, or any active dance companies you can find, or do some of the legwork and find others who have similar interests and approach studios in the area about adding an adult class — the obstacle for most studios is having steady enough enrollment of adults but if you can come to them with a ready-made group who are committed to attend steadily, it will be harder to turn you away. Now, you’ve mentioned choreographing but if it’s been almost 10 years since you’ve danced, I’d start with classes, unless you’re willing to volunteer and assist with a high school dance team, color guard, or community theater group. As for the vocabulary, you can always brush up on that with books. Check out our bookstore here.

  16. I personally think it is never too late to dance. Pursuing a professional dance career can take many forms. I started ballet at age 5 and danced through college. I stopped for 15 years and picked it up again in my later 30’s because it is the only exercise I have ever loved doing. At age 50 I performed several character roles in the Nutcracker and today at age 52 I am an understudy for the Snowflake and Flower Corp in a community production of the Nutcracker that has some amazingly talented young ladies that will be performing. I never would have imagined performing again and especially not after 50. I am blessed with the good health to still be dancing. I am even exploring a career change in finding ways to help dancers with fitness training needed outside of the studio to be a stronger dancer. Dancing is definitely not easy but as many have said it is a calling. So no it’s never too late to pursue a passion. Dreams can take many forms and just because it doesn’t turn out the way you hoped it would doesn’t mean it won’t come true for you in the future. If dance is your calling you will find a way to make it happen.

  17. Hi! My name is Elise and I am a recent college graduate. Although I am thankful for my education and new full time job in the hospitality and tourism industry, I am ignoring what I really want to be doing. I started dancing at the age of 3 and stopped around the age of 15 to focus on school. Dancing has forever been a strong passion of mine and it was my dream to pursue a career in dance. Now that I am 22 years old I am in need of some advice about how to get back into it and follow a professional career in dance as I am 100% motivated and committed to do whatever it takes to make my dream come true. Honestly there is nothing else I want to do in this world but dance and make it a career. Help!! Thanks!!

  18. “Just because it doesn’t turn out the way you hoped it would doesn’t mean it won’t come true for you in the future. If dance is your calling you will find a way to make it happen.” (Thanks Teresa. Yes, I agree.) Our post, But What I Really Want To Do Is Dance makes this point.

    AND… yet there’s more to it.

    I receive a lot of messages from dance-hopefuls in their 20’s and 30’s asking about wanting to start again or switch careers to dance. Very few ask specifically about how to get into non-performance careers – they want to dance.

    But I find that even though people not working in dance are aware it is not a lucrative field, most don’t realize that performing dancers aren’t paid like other careers – performers rarely make a living wage, certainly not by the hour, and sometimes they are not paid at all, even for professional projects. Dancers are not always paid for their daily class/training either – for many it’s an expense of being self-employed in the field. Most professional dancers live and meet those expenses by other means, be it teaching, a secondary career, or their spouse.

    Opportunities to perform? Yes, they’re available to pros and amateurs. Performing for a living? Much less available. This may not matter for anyone supported financially through other means but can matter a great deal to those who must support themselves (or will share in support of family now or in the future) and so when I hear people wanting to switch careers and pursue dance, I want to be sure they know the reality of following this particular dream.

    It is because financially viable performance careers are rare that it’s very unlikely that life/work in dance will ever turn out the way it is initially hoped or imagined. That’s true for the dancer who NEVER stopped dancing and so it is even more true for those who have. So yes, “if dance is your calling, you’ll make it happen.” You’ll sacrifice security, or time, family, location, or money- your own or your family’s – to explore or forge paths on or off the stage that are as uncertain or discouraging as they are rewarding.

    Exploring the dance path whether there is performance involved or not almost always must begin in high-level/professional classes/program – start there …but do indulge or stay connected to your interests, curiosities, and the rest of who you are, because these are what usually leads a dancer along his/her unique road.

    Elise, with experience in hospitality/tourism you might consider looking into jobs as dance company management — bookings, touring, travel, etc. Classes and more may be available to you if you are working in the dance field.

  19. Hey! I’m Grace, and I’m a dancer! I was doing the kwon do for about 7 years, and when I told my family I wanted to do dance, they flipped out at first. My sister kept telling me that it was too late to start dance, but I believed in myself and told myself that if I worked hard and always tried my best, then I could be an amazing dancer. You just have to put your mind to it! So I decided I wanted to dance at 11 years, but then I had to wait until September of this year (2015) because my tae kwon do contract didn’t end until the spring and I couldn’t enroll for the year at that point. So for that whole year, I danced in my jazz shoes (which my parents got me since I signed up for dance ensemble in my school play the previous year) using YouTube tutorials.
    So now I’ve FINALLY started dance (I take ballet and jazz) and it’s going great! I look forward to those to classes every week, and plus I get to spend time with my best friend. But even though I started taking classes, I still practice as much as I can while keeping my grades up. I try to aim to practice extra from anywhere between 30 mins to 1 hour per day. I try to treat every class like a performance, because I get to show my teacher what I’ve learned and how I’ve improved. And then if there’s something my teacher points out, I’ll make sure I spend extra time on it when I practice.
    Dance is amazing, and I love the way I can move my body in beautiful ways and express emotions to people through dance. I think I want to dance professionally some day, and I know that if I work hard even though some people say I started late and I’m a black and white mixed girl, I can make it!
    You just have to believe in yourself and push past the boundaries that others and you yourself might put up. It’s NEVER too late to start dance! I worried about it when I first started, but now I know that I did the right thing by ignoring the negative comments some people made and jumping right into a dancing career. I am soooo excited to continue with dance, and YOU CAN DO IT!! You just have to telling yourself WHEN and not IF. Sending love to all the “late” dancers out there!!! ????????????????????????????????????

  20. i want to dance but everyone is telling me that i am too old, and i should of started at young ages like 4

    • The people telling you that you are too old are wrong. Stop listening to them. 🙂

    • If dancing will make you happy, then you’ve got to take charge! Don’t wait for someone to hand you an opportunity, make an opportunity for yourself! ???? If your really want it, you can make it happen. Like Nichelle said, “Stop listening to them.” You can do it! ????????????

    • Please do not listen to them. Negative people are like poison. You can do anything you want at any age. I went back to dance at 23, and now at age 26 I am a professional dancer with a first class honours degree in dance. I now perform and write about dance. I have also recently written and published a book about how the process of dance has a strong element towards self discovery. Please do what you love in life and if dance is what you love you should be doing it.

  21. I am 15 and am really interested in dance and have done some in the past and have been offered placements with dance schools but, have never really considered it until now… would it be likely for me to get into a career of dance now that I am 15?

  22. I am twelve and absolutely LOVE ballet. I also have some fatigue issues though. My parents believe in me but have mentally ruled out my being a professional dancer. I want to dance more classes and I keep saying that but my parents think that my live for ballet will just wear off after the grueling work of all of the classes. My parents say that they love my determination and perseverance. Thank you for this motivating article!

  23. Jocelyn says:

    Thank you so much, Nichelle, for speaking so clearly and candidly about how hard life can be if you choose dance as your “profession”. It is one of those professions that are typically chosen (or that choose you) when you are so very young that you really have no idea of the realities of the life even for the very lucky ones who get a permanent job in an established ballet company. I was lucky enough to to be accepted into a top UK vocational school at 13 (The Royal Ballet School, White Lodge) but reached a crisis and decided to leave. Thereafter ballet became more recreational for me and with exams etc. university and then work, little by little ballet slipped out of my life. I returned to ballet several times over the years but, discouraged that I could no longer do it to a level “acceptable to me”, kept abandoning it. At the start of this year, encouraged by one of my dance teachers, I seriously considered taking a dance teaching qualification and in preparation for all that started taking as many adult classes as I could. I’m 49 (!) and have spent most of my career as a lawyer in television. I don’t know yet whether I will take that dance teaching qualification and sometimes I think ‘what if I had never given up – perhaps I could have been a professional dancer’ but perhaps my younger self was wiser than I realised: it has been great to have another career and gain my economic independence. Now as a much older dancer I am enormously enjoying the challenge of returning to ballet so much wiser and better informed but without the pressure to ‘be the best’. Now I can dance purely for enjoyment and for me – what could be better?! I am looking forward to doing more performance work too, and seeking out more opportunities of this kind – the opportunities are out there if you look for them! So I really think your wise words are so helpful to those considering a ‘career’ in dance. I believe dance is a calling too but it does not have to be the principal way that you earn a living (if it is you risk ruining it for yourself too…)

  24. I am 15 and not graceful at all. I would like to start dancing, not professionally or anything like that, to become more graceful and have better poise as well as to be fitter in a more enjoyable way. But I’m embarrased to join a class in my current state. Any advice?

    Great article, by the way,

    • Maybe this will help, Ella: http://www.danceadvantage.net/fit-enough-to-dance/

      My advice is simply that there’s absolutely no need to feel embarrassed. Dance is for EVERYONE. Find a class/teacher that’s supportive of teen and adult beginners and go for it. You will never regret what you do, only what you didn’t do!

    • I’m 13 and started Dance in the September of 2015. It wasn’t as hard for me to start at a ‘late’ age because my best friend was taking the same classes as me, but embarrassment was one thing I was worried about. I would recommend looking for a dance school, deciding what classes you want to take, and in the time leading up to when the classes start, begin learning on your own. I learned some basic ballet moves from YouTube for a good foundation for both my ballet and jazz class and learned how to do some other basic leaps, turns, etc. It turned out to be really helpful because they only offered intermediate classes and up for my age group, but I had no problem following along with the exercises and dances. So if you’re worried about making a fool of yourself or something, just get a head start with YouTube!
      Also, remember that life is short, so discard what other people are saying and follow your dreams!

  25. Hi I am Shunya Walker I Love to dance. I have been dacing every since i was little; i still dance. I bought every dance game that was made for Wii and xbox. I have Just dance 2, 3 , 2015, dance central 2 /3 black eye peas experience, Michael jackson Experience. Dancing makes me happy I joined the dance team in middle school, and joined the step team in High school. I have never had training in dance I am 19 years old graudated from high school in 2015 I am a college student I was thinking about saving money up so i can go to a dance class or some type of training. But I think i am too old to go to dance class. I also want to become a dancer, as well as dance choreographer and open my own dance studio. I was even planning on creating dances to popular pop songs while I am home for the summer I watched music videos all my life and tried to mimic the choreography I am a fast learner I and I can dance. I am also going to school for a actual career to have something to fall back on if it does not work out. I just want to know How can I achieve those goals?

  26. Hi I’m Serena and I’m 13 and I wasn’t sure if I was to late to start dancing, now I know I’m not to old. The only problem is that my parents always tell me that anyone good at dance usually started dancing at a young age and I’m afraid to ask them if I can start dance lessons. They say I’m too old and should stick to playing basketball but I love the thought of me being a dancer. How could I convince them to let me start dance lessons??

    • Hi Serena, there are many reasons to dance beyond becoming a professional or even accomplished dancer so sharing these reasons may be helpful. And, honestly, if I only ever tried things I was guaranteed to be good at… well, I’d probably never try or get good at anything because you never know until you try. Finally, it’s just not true that only early starters get good at dance. Misty Copeland is just one (very prominent) example, having started at 13 but there are many more like hermen and women– in the dance world.

      I don’t know what will convince your parents. They may have additional concerns they haven’t shared with you. If this is something you really want, research and present to them the benefits of dance, examples of late-starters, dance schools or classes in the area, and perhaps even how you might help offset any cost by doing chores or earning money. This will show your commitment in a way that maybe they haven’t seen before and may open discussion so that you might understand their perspective and from there, figure it out together. Best of luck!