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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Petits battements sur le cou de pied


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I hope that you know what I'm talking about when I say "petits battements sur le cou de pied"?


I can't do these. I really struggle with them. My teacher always tells me to relax my knee, work from below the knee etc. But I tend to twist

my ankles around instead!


Do you have any advice for me?

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Lau, your knee works like the hinge on a gate. You need to hold your rotation from the hip, but let the lower leg swing out from the knee joint, just like a gate swinging on a hinge. But the gate moves sideways, out and in, not forward and back. Hold your hand on your knee and let the lower leg just swing in and out in a sideways motion. That will give you the feeling of it. Then point the foot and let it swing to cou de pied front and out a little bit (not straightening the knee) and back and out. Gradually cut down the distance of the "out" to increase the speed of the beats. The foot remains in a pointed position and the ankle joint does not move at all.

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