Jump to content
Ballet Talk for Dancers

Hyperextension and bulky muscles.


Balletgirl19892003

Recommended Posts

I have hyperextended legs and knees. The muscles in my legs seem to be really big. Does having hyperextended legs have anything to do with my quads being kinda big. Also is it normal for a dancer to developpe side and the muscles in his or her legs to show? How can you fix this problem? :wink::D:DB):sweating:

Edited by Balletgirl19892003
Link to comment
  • Administrators

Hyperextension has nothing to do with bulky muscles. That is either genetic or comes from working incorrectly.

 

If the muscles in your legs don't show when doing a developpé then your leg is not straight and not working hard enough. They should not work hard on the unfolding, but at the moment of full extension they must be working.

Link to comment
Guest Tarantella

I definitely agree with Ms. Leigh! I have seen a lot of bulky muscles and some are hyperextended and some aren't. I think it is what happens when dancers are constantly given ridiculously fast combinations. It is good to sometimes have fast combinations, but one also has to keep in mind the development of muscles. If you are jamming your legs trying to keep up, it is not a good sign. But I think that if one develops the correct muscles and learns how to use them correctly, one would be able to handle those fast combinations (of course I still think they shouldn't be given all the time). Then there are genetics which I don't have a clue about!! hope this helps. B)

Edited by Tarantella
Link to comment
  • Administrators

Bulky thighs are also caused by working incorrectly. If you have your weight too far back it causes you to sit in your legs, which will cause the hips and thighs to spread. Ballet is about lengthening, and that starts with proper placement and weight placement. Over rotation can also add to the problem by forcing you too far back and down. Working within your own "control zone" must be learned and continuously practiced. Lift OUT of your legs, do not sink into them.

Link to comment
Guest Firebird3000

Since I'm not a moderator please feel to igore me but I thought I should tell you my experiece. I went to a Dolly Dinkle Dance School and fell in love with ballet. I went straight into Grade 4 RAD and didn't learn anything about technique, just the steps. 3 laters I had knee injuries and I had no idea why. At one summer school one of the dance teachesr looked at me and told me that I had 'Bulky" quad muscles and thats why I had knee problems. I went to see a very good teacher, switched to a pre-professional school and I learned how to correct my problem and 2 years later I have no knee problems and my thighs have decreased immensely.

My problem was that I have hyperextended legs and I would stand in first and every other postion and slam my knees back thinking that I was stretching my legs. I also sat in my hips and heels and had never used my abs before. I learned how to use my quad muscles to lift my knee caps up and not slam my knees back. I learned to use my abs and lift out of my hips. It took me a good year to learn this and a lot of hard work. My whole body changed and I have no problems or injuries.

My advice is to make sure that you are not doing any of the things I 've said and If you are switch schools immediately.

Hope this sheds some light on the matter

Alex

Link to comment
  • Administrators

If the thighs are too big for your frame, and very muscular, then they are probably bulky. If they are not muscular, then they are just heavy and you are carrying too much weight. There are some people who are just built with a very muscular structure, and if they are also very short, or short legged, then it is more likely that the thighs will be bulky. If one has a longer and thinner structure, it is less likely that the muscles will be bulky. It is based on genetics, to begin with, but of course working incorrectly and overusing the quads can accelerate or encourage the development of bulky muscles.

Link to comment

My legs are basically the same width as hips which are very narrow and my legs are really long. I think i've found out what to do decrease the size of them. I stopped sitting in my hips and now ballet seems a lot easier. My teachers used to always tell me not to sit in my hips but i never really understood until now. Thanks for the advice? if my legs are the same width as my hips does that mean theyare bulky? :)

Edited by Balletgirl19892003
Link to comment
Guest Tarantella

I think that if you look at your legs and you see muscles that sort of start and stop and are not elongated, then they are probably bulky, but honestly I can't say anything for sure because all people are different and someone might think of "elongated" muscles as one thing and another may think of them differently. However, I did read somewhere that thighs should appear to be the same size as the calves (which seems impossible). Maybe they meant slightly bigger than the calves?? :shrug: But either way I guess they are saying that when you look generally at your legs you should not see a big difference between the two.

 

The book is Classical Ballet Technique by Gretchen Ward Warren. Some of the model dancers are, Susan Jaffe, Cheryl Yeager, Valerie Madonia, Johan Renval, Robert Hill, Cynthia Harvey (nearly all of them from ABT)

Here is the quote: "Slim thighs that appear to be the same width as calves" page 66

 

If you look at the dancer the thighs are a smooth curvy type of line that doesn't break up the leg and if you glance at it they do look very close in size.

Hmmmm.... hope this helps :thumbsup:

Link to comment
  • Administrators

Yikes! I really don't think I would want to see calf muscles as big as thighs! At least not the tops of the thighs. :shrug: That would look quite abnormal, even for a dancer!

 

And balletgirl, that is not a basis of judgment for bulky thighs. It has to do with the muscle size, but, if the thighs went out wider than the hips that would probably indicate that they are heavy, as in excess weight, or possibly that the muscles are overdeveloped. But if they go straight down from your hips, I would think that would be quite fine. There is really no way to tell without seeing.

Link to comment
Guest NYCDancer3665

HI, i'm new to this message board, but I just wanted to ask a question about thigh muscles.

 

I was born with legs that are shorter, and very muscular. But my question is, are there any stretches or excercises that you could do to help elongate the muscles, and possibly make the thighs look slimmer? Also, how big is too big? My thighs are about 19" across the middle of them, is that large in ballet standards?

 

Thanks so much for your time!

Link to comment
  • Administrators

Hello NYCDancer, welcome to the Young Dancers' forum here on Ballet Alert! Online :yawn:

 

It's pretty hard to change a short, muscular structure. The best thing you can do is be sure that you are not overworking those muscles, and that you are really well placed and lifted out of your legs so that you do not increase the muscle development. Ballet is structured to lengthen and not shorten when executed properly. As to the size of your leg, as with weight it's not a number, it's what it looks like. So, we cannot tell you without seeing you whether they are too big or not. It is certainly more difficult for people who lack height and length in the legs, but in terms of jobs, it will always come down to the look and the overall size in terms of what the company is looking for at that moment in time, and of course the strength of the technique.

Link to comment
Guest JRSDANCER87

I have very slightly hyper extended legs. I think that perhaps you are more prone to getting bulky mucsles from having hyperexted legs because you have to use the mucsles more to control the hyperextention (otherwise you wind up with pain in your knees and you lock them, not a good thing!) however, as everyone said, if you are using the mucsles correctly they shouldn't bulk. I don't really have big mucsles, but does anyone else in your family have big mucsles? Like Ms. Leigh says, it's probably genetic :-(

Link to comment
  • 1 month later...

I talked to my teacher and she said that my leg muscles are not bulky but just right. She also said that i'm muscular because my dad is and that my muscles are actually very elongated. Thanks for everyone's advice on this subject! :angry::(

Link to comment
Guest thumpinhippo

I have not had many recent comments on the size of my thighs and I think I would have by now if they were a real problem. But from my point of view, they look huge. I am pretty sure that they extend past the width of my hips. What can I do about them - especially over the summer while I am not at ballet class?

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...