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Ballet Talk for Dancers

muscle spasm?

Guest Makayla

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Every time I lay on my back, bend my knees and turn out (so i look like i'm in second position plie, but not standing up) I get a horrbile pain in my very top of my leg, and bum area. is that a muscle spasm? I'm just wondering how I could prevent this.

The ideas that I have that could cause it is maybe that muscle isn't warmed up enough before I used it, or maybe I'm stressing it too much?

Any help would be greatly appreciated! :)

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Is this pain bilateral, that is, on both sides, or does it just happen on one side? Whichever it is, it relates to the muscles used for rotation, and, as you are a relative newcomer to ballet, is quite normal. All you've got there is plain old cramp, which is a sort of spasm. Use mostly gravity to drive the rotation in this sort of exercise, then add just a gentle amount of rotation using the muscles. Remember, never ever force anything!

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it only happens on my right side.

so should i just ignore it, and keep doing this stretch? (I don't force it, i just let my legs hang there and gravity pulls them like you said) Thank you for clearing that up... I was scared there was something wrong with me :)

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It's entirely normal. Just do a couple of easier "opening up" stretches first, like frogs or butterflies, sitting up. When you lie down, make sure your back isn't arched, so that the small of the back comes 'way off the floor.

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Makayla, please update your email address on your profile. I tried to send you this message by email, but it bounced!


Dear Makayla -


I would appreciate it if you didn't address me directly as "Mel". It is a more traditional and formal thing for a student to speak to a teacher using a title and their family name. So, "Mr. Johnson" or "Major/Maj. Johnson" would be perfectly appropriate, as they both fit. It's a little thing, I know, but we're sort of in an online classroom here, and the rules of classroom decorum should obtain. Even when I was with the Joffrey, if a company member gave company class, it went from "Paul" in class or rehearsal or in the waiting room, to "Mr. Sutherland" in class when he taught.

Shucks, if you check it out, you'll find that I refer to "Ms. Leigh" when speaking of her here.


Best Regards,

Mel Johnson

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