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Let This Plus-Size Ballerina Show You That All Bodies Are Ballet Bodies

Although most of us know that anyone can dance, the popular image of a ballerina remains one of a very slender woman. That narrow standard doesn't leave much room for body diversity. Enter Frostine Shake. The Austin, TX, based ballerina, burlesque performer, and model is breaking that body standard for herself and other aspiring dancers.

As she told Buzzfeed, Shake started ballet lessons as a young girl, but quit during her teenage years due to pressure to look a certain way. It was only when she started doing burlesque a few years later that she discovered how her passion for dance could align with her positive body image.

In time, ballet started to make its way back into her performances, thanks to childhood friends who reintroduced the form to her and helped her "brush up" on her skills. Now, she'll complete a pin-up girl outfit with a pair of pointe shoes, posing effortlessly on her toes. Even if her routine doesn't specifically feature ballet, she told her Instagram followers, "I try to always carry the grace of ballet with me when I dance and I continue to be inspired by the art form."

Shake will be the first to tell you she doesn't consider herself a ballerina, but that hasn't stopped her from inspiring others. "Your pointe photos inspired me to become a #plussizeballerina and [I] started yesterday! Thank you @frostine_shake," one commenter wrote on an Instagram post. "Role model for all girls," another wrote.

In her performances and her modelling, Shake looks at home in her body and is proud of what it can do. She told Buzzfeed it's about finding a comfortable balance: "Dance makes my body feel alive, and I try my best to do the art form justice — this includes loving my body." By showing the importance of self-love, she's making space in the dance world for a more diverse set of body types, which we couldn't love more.

Below, check out Shake in action, en pointe.

It's your body. It's your summer. Enjoy them both
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