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Develope Devant


Guest Rachel

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Guest Rachel

Of all my extensions, develope devant is the lowest and the most difficult. I can't get my leg higher than 90 degrees while maintaining my full turnout. I've been doing stretches where I lie on my back and hold my foot in a develpe devant position, but I'm not sure whether this is stretching what I need to be stretched. What exercises and stretches will both strengthen and stretch my extension?

 

Rachel

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Front extensions with good rotation and placement are the hardest for everyone, Rachel. It takes time and a lot of work and patience. Just keep stretching the hamstrings with your basic forward stretches, both standing and sitting :)

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Everything takes so much hard work. And after the hard work, time. Time, time, for anything to improve. :) It is so upsetting that there are these lucky girls born with the most gorgeous feet, rubberband bodies and virtually no hip joints for perfect turn-out. Yet they do say, sometimes those who have to work for it make it in the long run rather than a girl who has everything.... so I look to this for inspiration. Ms. Leigh, Mr. Johnson, any inspiring stories of students you thought had no chance but made it pro?

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Well, yes, actually. I had a student with a lot of very good things going for her, but a few missing elements. Her rotation was not good at all, and her demi plié was extremely tight. But, she had the intelligence, the determination, and the ability to work harder than anyone else. She went into Ballet Eddy Toussaint de Montreal at 17, and ended up a principal dancer with this company after it moved to Sarasota, FL and became Sarasota Ballet. She had extension, and was very pretty and looked like a dancer, and the feet were good, not exceptional, but good. She learned how to work her rotation so that she "looked" turned out, and she worked on her plié and her jump, and actually became one of the strongest dancers we ever had. She spent a lot of time practicing on her own, working on her flexibility and rotation, and on her relevés and her jump. She MADE herself, with the proper training of course, ;), into a very fine dancer! But, in order to do that she had to have the right training to begin with, and also the time and the access to the studio. She was home schooled in her high school years, and came very early to the studio every day. She put in a lot of extra work outside of classes.

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So that is definately the key. It does make sense, that if you don't start with everything and expect it to improve dramatically just in class.... there's just no way. So I should stretch everyday then, I assume. *Sigh*. I think I receive excellent training, so that isn't a problem, it is just my extra work.... I want this so bad, so I can make myself do it!

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