A ballet dancer (Italian: ballerina [balle ˈ ri ː na] FEM., Ballerino [balle ˈ ri ː no] masc.) is a person who practises the art of classical ballet. Females and males can practice ballet; However, the dancers have a strict hierarchy and rigorous gender roles. They depend on years of extensive training and proper technique to be part of professional companies. Ballet dancers are at high risk of injury due to the demanding technique of ballet.
Dancers usually begin to train between the ages of 2-4 (for females) or 5-7 (for male dancers) if they want to perform professionally. The training does not end when the ballet dancers are hired by a professional company. They should attend ballet class six days a week to stay in shape and conscious. Ballet is a rigorous form of art, and the dancer must be very athletic and flexible.
Ballet dancers begin their classes at the bar, a wooden beam that runs along the walls of the ballet studio. The dancers use the bar to keep up during the exercises. The bar work is designed to warm the body and stretch the muscles to prepare for work in the center, where perform exercises without the bar. The work center in the middle of the room begins with slower workouts, gradually leading to faster workouts and larger movements. Ballet dancers finish the center work by practicing big jumps across the floor which is called Great Allegro.