Ashley Barnes Allie D. Rogers Engl 1010- 431 October 1, 2012 Ballet or Football? Ballet and football are both difficult sports to master; however, someone once said, “If ballet were any easier, they’d call it football. ” What makes for a good sport? Every sport has rules and regulations that one must follow in order to play. The sport requires specific skills such as strength, coordination, and speed. A good sport has a certain level of safety to keep the participants safe and requires a lot of teamwork so that every is playing together. I personally think ballet is the more technical of the two.
Ballet is much more complex than football. Every sport requires you to follow certain guidelines. In football, the player can’t grab the opponent in certain ways or a yellow flag will be thrown on the ground to indicate holding or some penalty that no one has even heard of before. Football has rules that the team must obey. On the other hand, ballet is less restricted than football. They are no rules in ballet. Ballet is a form of art; there are no limitations on art. Ballet is not about winning or following any rules; it is about expression through movement.
Although there is more freedom in ballet, there is a lot of technique required. You must hold your arms a certain way so that they do not droop, and you must always remember the turn out of your thigh when you tendu. Ballet may not have rules, but there are still plenty of little details to remember. Strength is a major component of almost any sport. In football, the quarterback relies on two hundred and fifty pound linemen to block so that he can get the ball in the end zone. The defensive linemen have to use their upper body strength to hold the opposing team and keep them from getting to the ball.
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They use their lower body to stand strong to hold their ground like grabbing a bull by the horns. Ballet requires a totally different kind of strength than football does. Dancers use their upper bodies to hold their arms above their heads in a perfect beach ball shaped fifth position while still keeping their shoulders down for thirty minutes at a time. They use their lower body strength to push out of a plie to a pique turn and have to maintain the core strength, so they do not wobble too much. Football does not require much coordination.
It wasn’t a sport that was meant to be pretty. It was meant to be rough and rugged for the manliest of men. While watching the game, half of the time you don’t even know if they meant to fall down or if they just happen to be clumsy enough to fall over their own two feet. It tends to be one big dog pile play after play. In ballet, coordination is everything. Dancers must make sure they are in the exact spot that they are supposed to be at and be in sync with every other dancer on the stage. Pierce Brosnan said, "Love is a lot like dancing; you just surrender to the music" (Willcutt).
Every beat must be a white flag waving and show complete dedication to the music. Dancers have to be coordinated enough to do long elaborate pieces of choreography while still maintaining a smile on their faces. Ballerinas must make every single movement appear effortless. In football, speed is very important when a wide receiver is trying to run the ball down the field. It is his speed that helps him to pass by the other players in lightning speed so fast that they do not even know what hit them. I know what you’re thinking…. why would you need speed in ballet?
However, not one ballerina would ever dream of doing a slow fouette, a move in which you whip your leg around to spin. It would be a disaster. Fouettes are meant to be fast to get your body around faster to make your pirouettes prettier. Speed and extreme focus is what makes a ballerina capable of turning. Although countless football players get hurt yearly, they have equipment that is specifically designed to keep them from serious injury. Football players risk injury every time they step foot out on that field, but if they fall down, their equipment is there to take the majority of the impact.
Safety is important in any sport you play; that is why in football the players wear pads and helmets for protection. However, dancers must maintain a flawless posture to keep from injuring themselves. There is no special equipment for a dancer to use to keep themselves to safe. A dancer must rely on stretching to warm up his or her muscles. Dancers have to take every good care of their ankles and knees because they are constantly at risk of injury. If a dancer twists her ankle on stage during a performance, she doesn’t call in the second string.
She sucks it up, puts on a brave face, and keeps on dancing. Teamwork is important in football because if you don’t read your guards, then you are liable to screw the entire play up. The player must know what the play is and what exact role everyone is going to play. The players huddle up before each play to strategize against the other team. They break off and have to rely on their teammates to do what is required of them. Vince Lombardi said, “People who work together will win, whether it be against complex football defenses, or the problems of modern society” (Family of Vince).
When you think of the word team, you don’t exactly picture a group of ballerinas dancing on a shiny hardwood stage. You stereotypically think of the Pittsburg Steelers or some other NFL team. However, in ballet, every dancer is part of a team. You have to be so in tune with one another that as soon as the music begins, everyone begins to dance as if a bunch of puppets moving on strings. If one “teammate” loses rhythm then the whole performance suffers. Dancers rehearse with their fellow dancers for weeks and weeks to perfect their dance so that it will be flawless.
In the end, ballet and football require a great amount of passion and determination. If you do not have the heart, you will not be willing to put in the blood, sweat, and tears that it takes to pursue the sport whole-heartedly. Although football may be a little easier, both sports demand a lot of hard work. Works Cited Family of Vince Lombardi c/o Luminary Group LLC. “Famous Quotes by Vince Lombardi. ” Vince Lombardi. 2010. Web. October 4, 2012. Willcutt, Sara. “Dance Quotes 3. ” Ascending Star Dance- An Internet Dance Magazine. 2007. Web. October 4, 2012.
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