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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Alignment Strength


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I've recently discovered that my alignment hes been off for the past four years (yay me...) by a very stubborn sway in my lower back. Upon correcting this, I first thought I was "tucking under" in a bad way, but the instant increase in my stability, turnout, turns, and extensions proved otherwise. The only draw back is that it takes a constant amount of energy to keep my pelvis from swinging back into it's "bad" position. It's quite tiring to hold this good posture for the entire class, so I'm hoping some one could suggest some exercise to strengthen this area so that it won't be so exhausting to hold. My abs (deep and superficial) seem rather stong, so I guess the weakness is in my lower back muscles, them not being strong enough to lengthen my pelvis downward? Though I study dance anatomy, I still get confued with who does what down in the pelvic area...

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There's not just one exercise to combat a swayback, but you are aware that while working, the spine must be felt to be as long as possible. That's your key! Do that constantly while dancing, and even when not, and you'll get that swayback under control. It's the long, slow processes which are the most effective in ballet.

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Keywords in Mr. Johnson's post: "...and even when not...". The only way to make a habit of good alignment in class is to make that alignment a 24/7 thing. Then you won't have to work so hard at it in class! :thumbsup:

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  • 1 month later...

Just thought I should update that this has really opened new realms of proficiency for me. I feel so much more placed and stable than I ever have before and has really given me an overnight boost to my technique. It's become much easier to find and hold this alignment and so I'm able to put my focus and concentration elsewhere.


Moral of the story: if things aren't working out as well as they should, or you feel "off" for an extended period of time, check you alignment!

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That's a good thing, and I'm happy that this little discussion helped you. Sometimes alignment can just wander off somewhere by itself and it will take DAYS to find it again. Constant attention can preclude this from happening.

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