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My daughter feels that the area she needs the most improvement or perhaps frustrates her the most is balancing on flat, say in a passe releve (excuse spelling-complete novice here) for example. Her teacher feels that she has good alignment and that she may just need to dig deeper and challenge herself to hold it longer. This teacher also feels that since most dancers in her class flop over or give up quickly, she may subconsciously let go knowing that she held it longer than everyone else, even though she is capable of holding it longer. She seems to have more confidence in balancing on pointe. Any suggestions on how to improve balance?

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Balance is a lot like real estate. What's important? "Location, location, location!" Everything has to be in its proper place with regard to alignment and placement, and then you get good balances. And it has to stay there. Fidgeting will only make balance more difficult to achieve, so strength also is in the equation.

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Concentration is important, too. If you're paying attention to how long everyone else is balancing, you will probably not stay up if they fall.

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knock knock... a pilates balance board helps a lot! its a circle shape, round on the bottom like the lower half of a sphere. have your dd practice balances on one of those. you can get them on the internet, but can be quite pricy. i don't know if you have Costco near you, but that is where i got mine for a much more reasonable price!

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I found the following page among many internet sites featuring Pilates balancing equipment. Would the benefits of any of these products transfer over into holding balances in ballet? Specifically for a ballet dancer, would there be any contraindications to using any of these products?


Pilates Balancing and Stretching Equipment


Of the many products on this page, the ones I was most interested in getting opinions on are: Exervo Balance Board and Disc and a very similar looking product called Exerdisc Balance Board, there is also a book on the web-page titled The Great Balance and Stability Handbook. On the bottom right side of the front cover is a Bosu Ball, which I have heard is good for balance training-Bosu Ball


Any opinions or thoughts about these products for the ballet student?

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  • 2 weeks later...

I wanted to bump this up. I'm still hoping a ballet expert can tell me if the few things I mentioned from the web-site above would be appropriate and not be counterproductive or contrindicated for the serious ballet student.


I am specifically interested in the three items listed in the post above. Once on the page, scroll down a little for these products.



Any help or guidance would be appreciated.

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The Pilates balance equipment or other such 'balance board' is of value, but I feel that this should be done under the supervision of qualified personnel. Structural challanges can place undue stress on feet, ankles, knees, hips, etc. if the dancer is struggling to maintain balance without proper instruction. I do not believe that 'video instruction' etc. is sufficient for such equipment (same goes for the various 'foot stretching' apparatus :( ).

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Thanks for taking the time to look at the information. Does "qualified personnel" mean that they have to have a dance background? My husband uses a personal trainer who is very into balance training and core training. He doesn't have a dance background, however. Is it necessary to use someone with a dance background for balance training, or is proper technique for this universal?

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Ah, you caught me trying to be subtle :wink: I think for a serious dancer, working with someone with a dance background or Pilates would be the best choice. Balance is balance, but ballet alignment is not 'universal'. My biggest concern would be that someone lacking the proper awareness may not pay attention to how the toes, foot, ankle are managing the board.

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One more, hopefully quick, question. Since our studio does not offer Pilates, how do I go about finding a Pilates instructor or trainer that works with balance that has a dance (or does it need to be specifically ballet) background? Thanks for any further information or direction.

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  • 9 years later...

My DD's ballet teacher has suggested the use of a balance board or wobble board at home to improve DD's balance. DD does have very flexible ankles (and feet) and carries out daily exercises written up by her physiotherapist to strengthen her ankles and feet as well as pilates with an ex-professional ballet dancer instructor.

I am aware that a wobble board is used to improve proprioception especially in the rehabilitation of ankle and feet injuries but I am curious to know if there are proven benefits for the use of a balance or wobble board in the prevention of ankle injuries in ballet dancers and/ or helping with ballet technique.

This is a link to the boards I have been looking at http://www.physiosupplies.com.au/exercise/balance-boards-cushions.html

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  • 2 weeks later...

Bumping up!

Does anyone know if there are proven benefits for the use of a balance or wobble board in the prevention of ankle injuries in ballet dancers and/ or helping with ballet technique? Anyone use a balance or wobble board? Thankyou.

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I do not think there have been studies - double-blind, etc. - done which would unequivocally prove that practicing balance and things like that on a wobble board prevents injuries. There are too many variables, for one thing. :)

In my experience it appears that balance does get better when doing balance exercises, which translates to better technique in some areas. As to injury-prevention, I think one can really only speculate there and see if "it works for you".


One can of course also make things which are similar to a wobble board, but are much cheaper, if it is the money which is a hindrance.

What we have done is to use a ball which is not very full of air, then stand on that, or put a board on top of it, and try to do various things on it once you can stand there with your eyes shut.

In fact, standing around on one foot with both eyes shut is wonderful, too, and very comical for those watching.




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Thank you diane, a podiatrist gave the standing on one foot exercise to my son a long time ago so it is performed on an irregular basis by the whole family! I did order a balance board and again the whole family has had turns "balancing". It's far more difficult than it looks and DD is much much better than the rest of the family. She likes it because it is more of a challenge (than standing with eyes closed) and the difficulty can be increased by varying the sphere size.

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