Part of being an elegant woman and wearing elegant clothes is having an elegant body to carry you around. Let’s discuss what it means to have an elegant body.

Whatever your size, shape, and body type you can carry yourself as an elegant woman. Posture is key to feeling and looking your best.

My Experience Cultivating an Elegant Body

When I was in acting school, we had to learn how to walk and talk. Sounds silly, right? We all know how to walk and talk. But they wanted us to learn how to walk and talk neutrally.

That means speaking English without any trace of an accent or regionalism. We learned general American speech. We also learned how to stand and walk with good posture. No slumped shoulders, no thrusting chin, no swayed back, and so on. We had to learn to stand with one vertebrae on top of the other, so that from the side we looked straight up and down.

Speaking and moving neutrally gives you authority on the stage. You start from a neutral place, then you can add characterizations on top of that for your performance.

The amazing part of learning to stand and walk neutrally was the other improvements we noticed in our bodies when we learned correct posture. One female student noticed that her monthly cramps weren’t as strong when she stood with good posture. Another mentioned that his neck pain went away because he wasn’t standing with his chin sticking out.

The school gave us exercises to help with this. We practiced some yoga, some dance, and some movement approaches such as Alexander Technique and Feldenkrais Method, which were mindful movement therapies that improve posture and balance.

My favorite way of keeping an elegant body is through ballet. I love the long, lean muscles created by practicing ballet. No matter where I’ve lived, I have always enrolled in an adult ballet school. Now that I’m older, and streaming is so easy, I take ballet classes at home. You can find many ballet classes and dance workouts on YouTube for free.

I always feel so tall and upright after a ballet barre session.

The Concept of La Bella Figura

Italians enjoy the idea of La Bella Figura, which literally means the beautiful figure. It’s about elegance, and how you present yourself to the world. You cast a beautiful figure.

This can include posture, moving with grace, dressing well, having good manners. It can be interpreted in many ways. It’s the art of presentation. To put it in modern terms, it’s your personal brand.

Part of la bella figura is maintaining a healthy body so that you can look good in clothes. But it’s also about being comfortable in your own skin. It’s about moving gracefully. And it’s about being ready for love, to be honest. Italians want to be attractive. Who doesn’t?

La bella figura is not about being perfect or having a size zero body. It’s about looking and feeling your best, and having a positive body image. You do this for yourself, and you do it out of respect for others.

It’s about elegance.

To create an elegant body, find a form of movement that you like doing so that you’ll do it often. You may enjoy walking or yoga or dance. Or maybe you want to try some of the acting school techniques I mentioned above.

Cast a beautiful figure in the world by cultivating an elegant body.

Click here to read the entire Elegance Series.