Jump from my heels? Really?

So, I’m in class, and Smirnoff calls out,
“My Dear! You must jump from your heels! Not the balls of your feet. Your heels, my dear. You must jump from your heels or you will have no height in your jump!”
So I think, ok! Jump from my heels! No problem!
I do it.
It’s a really weird flat-footed jump.
Looks terrible.
Probably not what he had in mind?
Ok!
So I figure it’s a figure of speech, like, keep the feeling of power from heel rebounding off the floor, but roll through the ball of the foot and keep a pointed toe.
Like when we do pirouettes at the barre and Smirnoff wants to hear the supporting heel strike the floor. Even though it was already on the floor? So we all cheat our heels up a tiny bit and then pound them down to make a noise and pop back up into relevé?
But somehow it’s still not quite right and he’s still telling me to Jump From Your Heel, My Dear!
And it’s turning into one of those things where you repeat a word over and over until it becomes completely foreign like you’ve never heard it before in your entire life?
Heel. Heel heel heel. Heeee-ul. He-yuhl. Heel. heeel.
Or like when you ask your friend, “hey, Why are you walking like that?” and then your friend over-thinks how to walk and lurches around like a zombie robot for the rest of the day? And it’s totally hilarious because it’s not you?
But in this case it is you and your feet and how they function has suddenly become totally Other?
And you’re rapidly losing the concept of walking at all? Let alone jumping?
And your teacher is advising you to lift your toes in the air?
And you have cartoon visions in your head of springing up directly from your heels?
Like with clouds of smoke and jets of flame?
Sheesh.

About adultbeginner

Had my first ballet class Ever at the advanced age of thirty-two. Yikes.
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