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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Gripping in hips.


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My teacher has been trying to help me relax the muscles in my hips so I don’t grip them.

I do understand what my teacher means by this, but for some reason I am unable to get my body to understand what I am telling it to do. Does any body else have this problem and what have your teachers said about it? :shrug:

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Not a student, but a teacher here...I am not quite sure what you mean by "relaxing in your hips"? Do you mean, do not tuck under? "Find more flexibility in your hip sockets?" It is just too vague. Maybe you need to ask your teacher more questions about what it is you are actually to achieve? :) There are too many ways to answer your question without more specifics. :shrug:

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I think I know what you mean, that you are using your hip flexors/thigh muscles more than you should be? I used to feel that way; try to do exercises for your rotators/glutes--side-lying things lifting your leg, opening the knee, etc. For me it was simply a lack of strength. Also, is your back tight? That can cause additional tensions in the hip area....

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  • 2 months later...

I was helped with this problem a long time ago especially in ronde de jambe en l'air. I put all of my tension in my hip flexors instead of pulling up in my standing leg, using my abs, and brushing the floor first to get my inner thighs to work and turn out.

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  • 2 weeks later...

If you are talking about your hips moving up and down in fast degages, my teacher recomended me to make sure I am "on" my standing leg.

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One visual that really helped me with this, was when one of my teachers said to pretend your leg is 100 feet long. For example, if you're holding your leg in the air, say for a developpe, and you're feeling the tension in your hip flexors, pretend that you're reaching your leg to the other side of the room, and from underneath, and that really got me to release my hip flexors. Good luck.

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I used to have this problem also. :rolleyes: I tried to pull up a lot and pretend I was a puppet and my leg was attached to a string from the ceiling. :blushing:

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I also have this problem. My teacher told me to not turn out to the side as much, so I could turn out more. Also, she said to practice slow tendus a la seconde, thinking of turning out from the back/inside of the working leg, while making sure not to roll in on the standing leg.

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YES! I have this problem too! My teacher always tells me to stop gripping my hips, and I never know what she means. In my case, I don't relax my hips when I do adagio, so I end up getting a ton of strain on them. She tells me that I need to work my inner thighs more so my hips don't hurt. Do your hips pop? Mine do.

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From your other post, RML, about "cupping toes", it sounds to me as though you are as tight as a drum all over when you take class. Don't do that, stress out all over; you should be relaxed all over, and only work the parts that have to move, or to support that movement. As to the popping hips, lots of people's do. It's nothing to worry about unless there's pain to accompany the pop.

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I really try to relax myself in class, but whenever I start to think about what the movement is, I tend to tighten up my hips and toes. The popping thing hurts sometimes, but not always, depends on what movement I'm doing.


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