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Ballet Talk for Dancers

"feeling" turnout


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I started ballet again in the last month after 10 years not dancing (!). My turnout isn't good, which is naturally to be expected, and I know will improve with class and the stretching I do in yoga.


I realize that I need to be patient, but I'm not sure I'm "feeling" the right muscles at work. After class I feel sore below my butt and along the sides of my hips, but not the front. I'm not really feeling anything along the front of my hips, except when my leg is higher, as in retire, and I know to push my knee back. It is easier for me to work my turnout when I am on my supporting leg and the working leg is out or in the air, and hard for me to feel a good position just standing in first or fifth.


I think my hip flexors are tight, and my pelvis might be tipped a little forward. My left side is tighter than my right; I can maintain turnout with the right leg as my working leg, but not the left. Is there some way I should change my technique now, or do I have to wait until I am more flexible? Am I doing something wrong, or is this a natural evolution? :D

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beck hen, really no way for us to be sure without seeing you. Your teacher needs to make sure that your pelvis is in line and all of your alignment and weight placement correct. Then you work on the rotation and maintaining it. It won't work if the alignement is off, but, we can't see you. As far as feeling it, there should be some notice from your body that you are using the gluteus muscles, and also the top of the thighs at the back. :grinning:

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A gentle but effective way of helping the pelvis stay level is to think of making your spine as long as possible. It prevents "tucking under" and at the same time, keeps the top front of the pelvis from tipping forward.

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Thank you. I thought there might not be an easy answer to that question! Ms. Leigh, I am definitely feeling it in the areas you mentioned, and Mr. Johnson, I will take that advice. I have been trying different classes and I am just in the process of becoming a regular with one teacher, so that should open the door for alignment issues to be corrected.

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