411: PEOPLE Magazine - Misty Copeland Was Told to Lose Weight: It 'Caused So Much Doubt'

“I’m not trying to change classical ballet. I love everything about it. But we have to show that we’re athletes,” Copeland says. We’re putting in the same amount of work; we have the same muscles.” - Misty Copeland

If you dance long enough, someone will say something about your body. Whether it's that you're too short, too tall, too thin, too heavy, too brunette, too blonde, too narrow, or too wide; somebody will say something. Here are a few things that stuck with me from over the years:

"What happened to her legs?" *This came after someone had seen me at 14 and then at 16. Hmm, let me think, this is generally the age when bodies change. That's what happened to my beautiful legs lady. 

"You look so good!" *This came after I decided it was a good idea to do a 10-day lemonade cleanse because "something happened to my legs" (see above). Newsflash: Don't do it!

"You're muscles are thick." *What a fantastic thing to tell a ballet student while training at a premier school. 

What you need to know is that, unfortunately, comments will be made but how you react to them will determine your overall wellness. Healthy dancers, mentally and physically, are the ones who flourish and our goal is to provide support for dancers to be healthy, happy and well. 

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