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How to strengthen back muscles?


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#1 Nutmegdancer

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 09:35 AM

Someone told me that the main reason dancers who have a good arabesque and are able to keep their leg up is because they have strong back muscles. Is this true? If so, how can I strengthen my back muscles? If it isn't, what can I do to hold my arabesque?

Thanks!
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#2 Mel Johnson

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 02:09 PM

Cassie, "having a strong back" is an important part of getting good arabesque line, but it's not the only part. The student needs to be well pulled up in the FRONT of the body, too, in particular, through the lower abdominal muscles. Also the standing leg can't act merely as someplace to put weight. The lift up must come through there, too, especially at the hips. No weight slumping into the supporting hip. Despite the absolute ideal of a completely-squared-off torso in all directions in developpé, it has to unidealize when it comes to arabesque. To the front and to the side, you have a clear path, but to the back, you have the original factory-installed seat cushions, which are in the way. You have to open, ever so slightly, the working hip, so that the leg has somewhere to go.
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#3 Clara 76

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 03:26 PM

Here's a post from Miss Leigh that also may help:

Arabesque

"A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor"- (Currently poking Poseidon in the netherworld with his trident)

"Christian Louboutins are uncomfortable, but I screamed the first time I put on a pointe shoe." Mila Kunis


#4 Nutmegdancer

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 07:17 PM

Thanks! I did what you both said and my leg went higher! :pinch:
Nutmegdancer :yucky:

#5 DanaD

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 10:30 AM

Wait...that post really confused me. :yucky: Can someone explain it to me, please?


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2009-Ballet Chicago

#6 Clara 76

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Posted 26 May 2009 - 11:01 AM

Which post, DanaD?

"A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor"- (Currently poking Poseidon in the netherworld with his trident)

"Christian Louboutins are uncomfortable, but I screamed the first time I put on a pointe shoe." Mila Kunis


#7 DanaD

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Posted 01 June 2009 - 05:55 PM

Ms. Leigh's post.


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2007-Idyllwild Arts
2008-Virginia School of the Arts
2009-Ballet Chicago

#8 Clara 76

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Posted 01 June 2009 - 06:02 PM

Ah. Ok. First try reading through this topic: ARABESQUE

You can't post there because it's on the Adult Ballet Student board, but it may help you understand arabesque better!

If you still have questions after reading it, let us know! :)

"A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor"- (Currently poking Poseidon in the netherworld with his trident)

"Christian Louboutins are uncomfortable, but I screamed the first time I put on a pointe shoe." Mila Kunis


#9 Victoria Leigh

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Posted 01 June 2009 - 09:09 PM

Dana, what confuses you about that post? If you can tell me, perhaps I can help to clarify it for you.

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LIFE ISN'T ABOUT WAITING FOR THE STORM TO PASS...
...IT'S LEARNING HOW TO DANCE IN THE RAIN! [Unknown]