I urge young people to stop counting fouettes and instead look for line, feeling, expression and that mysterious experience that can only happen at the Ballet.
here here Watermill.
But we also have to accept everyone is entitled to their opinion, and its up to the individual to seek more knowledge in order to see whether they want to change that opinion or not. Experience plays a great part in this.
If you liken the great art of ballet to the great art of music, have you ever heard of anyone even attempting to describe music as a sport? I haven't, (which doesn't mean that it hasn't been?).
Ballet dancers use their bodies as instruments, musicians use themselves (opera singers) or their fingers/toes whatever as an extension of theirselves. Have you ever done barre work and not thought of your body as an instrument being finely tuned?
and fine arts, is that a sport? here artists again use their bodies as an extension of themselves in order to portray a particular emotion at that time.
Gymnastics is a sport, as I watch the floor exercises, I can feel nothing about the individual, his/her emotions. Yes they perform great athletic feats,but I do not shed tears. Some of the great ballet dancers are capable of emoting tears. I cannot say that of any sport (cheerleading/ice skating/cricket/rugby) I have ever watched.