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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Trouble closing in 5th


les_sylphides_

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Okay, I'm sure there is a thread on this somewhere but I did several searches and didn't find one! So if somebody could direct me in the right direction or if it hasn't been asked then provide some input please :shrug:

 

The problem:

 

During tendus, degages, anything that closes in 5th either from the front, side, or back--I can't close my legs into 5th while keeping my legs straight. I have pulled up beyond the limits of pulling up and have asked my teacher and she doesn't seem to know what to say! I have moderate hyperextension and knock-need(ness). My knees touch together when I bring my working leg in but the lower half of my leg is about 3 or 4 inches out! It is physically impossible to not bend my knee or lift my heel up to bring my working leg in. I also tend to release my glutes to get my working leg in. Is any of this okay in certain circumstances? If not, then what do I do?

 

Sorry . . . I'm really frusturated because I think that by now I should be able to do a proper tendu :blushing:

 

Thank you so much :)

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I posted a long time ago about closing to fifth and hyperextended legs and I finally got my left side but I am really struggling with my right side, am I doing something weird? Does anyone else have this problem? Sometimes I will try to improve it but then the side of my knee hurts. Thanks so much for any responses! :innocent:

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I looked for that thread, found it, and I'm still in the dark as to what you're doing. Has your teacher helped you with the hyperextension? If so, what did she recommend? Making a short fourth out of fifth position? Keeping a space between the heels in first? Other? What? :innocent:

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I don't have trouble with first anymore, just fifth. One teacher recommended a small fourth, and I've been doing that recently. But, I still can't straighten my knees and I want to improve my fifth, not stay in a bad one. I've pulled up as much as I can and I know my knees won't be perfectly straight, but they're really bent and when i try to straighten them, sometimes my knees will start to hurt. Does that help at all? :)

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I have GOOD NEWS for you! :)

 

What you are calling a "bad fifth" is, for you, a good fifth. Only make the space between the feet as wide as need be to make your legs appear straight, and not locked back. Also, don't push back into the knee if your legs only go so far in this "compromise fifth". I know it will feel like you are dancing with constantly bent knees, but this is really the way to avoid injury.

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While that is great news, I have another problem. What about auditions and other things? Won't they think that that is a bad fifth? What about center? Should I do the same thing as barre? And, when I do degashes to the side very fast closing fith back and front, my supporting leg bends because I try to get all the way to fifth because when I don't, they yell, CLOSE ALL THE WAY TO FIFTH! Any advice???

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In auditions, you will be dealing with people experienced (it is to be hoped) in seeing dancers and will recognize that what you're doing is to counteract hyperextension.

 

And the others, if they don't know about the short fourth, then they don't know enough to be teaching. Frankly, I'd ignore them. If that isn't possible, then just bend the knees.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Nnnnooo, I don't think that's exactly what we said, but if it helps you to think that way, go ahead.

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