Athlete Name: Claire Alexander
Hometown: San Jose, California
Education: High School
Tell us a little about yourself
I am a ballet dancer, and I was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at 18 months old. I dance with the New Ballet School and have been doing ballet since I was six years old. I also do a lot of advocacy work and fundraising for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and am a member of National Charity League. One of the highlights of my dance career was attending the American Ballet Theatre’s highly selective summer intensive in New York City in 2019.
“I exercise because it is so vital for staying healthy."
Tell us what motivates you the most.
What motivates me is all the people with cystic fibrosis who came before me. I was fortunate enough to be born into a time where people like me have access to medications and treatments that allow us to live a fulfilled life. I am lucky to be able to have freedom in my life and I am motivated to achieve my best because of all the people who were not so fortunate before me.
Tell us about your exercise routine. What activities do you enjoy doing?
I dance ballet six to seven days a week for several hours at a time. Ballet is very physically demanding and helps me keep my lungs in great shape. I love ballet because it allows me to be creative and expressive while maintaining my health. I also enjoy the challenge of pushing myself to be the best dancer I can be.
Why do you exercise? Has your exercise changed due to quarantine?
I exercise because it is so vital for staying healthy. Being active is what maintains my health and lets me have freedom in life. I couldn’t be dancing every day and going to school if I were too sick. In quarantine I have tried a few new exercise techniques. I do ballet from home in a makeshift dance studio, I run in my neighborhood, and I take Peloton classes. With the increased health risks due to Covid-19, it is more important than ever to stay active.
How do you stay motivated during quarantine?
It can be hard to stay motivated when I can’t go to school or ballet classes in person. I make sure to stay in contact with friends and family by talking to them over the phone or meeting up in person from a distance. Knowing I am not alone in this is really helpful.
What are your goals for the future?
I am really excited to attend college in the fall and continue my education. I hope to continue taking ballet classes on the side and find a career that I am passionate about. I also want to continue my advocacy and fundraising work to spread awareness for cystic fibrosis and inspire others like myself to keep pushing forward.
Who is your role model?
My role models are my parents who have worked hard to give me a good life. They inspire me each day to make a difference in the world and to achieve my best. I wouldn’t be able to dance at such a high level and continue with my education and other extracurriculars without their support.