Pointe technique is the part of classical ballet technique that concerns pointe work, in which a ballet dancer supports all body weight on the tips of fully extended feet. A dancer is said to be en pointe when the dancer's body is supported in this manner, and a fully extended vertical foot is said to be en pointe when touching the floor, even when not bearing weight. Pointe work is performed while wearing pointe shoes, which employ structural reinforcing to distribute the dancer's weight load throughout the foot, thus reducing the load on the toes enough to enable the dancer to support all body weight on fully vertical feet.
Pointe technique resulted from a desire for female dancers to appear weightless and sylph-like. Although both men and women are capable of pointe work, it is most often performed by women. Extensive training and practice are required to develop the strength and technique needed for pointe work. (source Wikipedia)
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