Pointe is a form of ballet where dancers perform on their toes with special shoes called pointe shoes. It requires a lot of strength, technique, and balance to achieve the illusion of weightlessness while dancing on the tips of the toes. Pointe work is often considered the most challenging aspect of ballet and requires years of training to perfect.
To begin pointe work, dancers must have strong ankle and foot muscles, good alignment, and be at least 11-12 years old. Before beginning pointe work, dancers will spend many months working on strengthening exercises and practicing proper ballet technique. Dancers will also need to be fitted for pointe shoes specifically designed to support the feet during pointe work.
Many classical ballets, such as Swan Lake and The Nutcracker, feature pointe work. Pointe dancers often wear costumes with long tutus and intricate hairstyles to complete the graceful and ethereal look. Despite its difficulty, pointe work is highly sought after by dancers and is often considered the pinnacle of technical skill in ballet.