Ben Nureyev

My son Ben (almost 10yrs), has just come home from his second ever ballet class. Somewhat amazingly, he was keen to show off his new leotard, vest and ballet shoes (all black). What a man!

He's pursuaded that taking up dance is in fact extra football training. As a goalie, and a not very tall one at that, he needs to be able to outjump the opposition. And who can jump higher than a ballet dancer? Indeed, in any other position on the field, ballet will help him with strength, athleticism, balance – and concentration.

It helps that the only other boy in the class is his mate, and a star player in his football team, who's been doing ballet since he was five.

And whilst he currently has little interest in the opposite sex, it must be a serious investment for the future that he'll be able to spend teenage evenings with 15 extremely supple girls in leotards.

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