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Ballet Talk for Dancers

How to strengthen back muscles?


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Someone told me that the main reason dancers who have a good arabesque and are able to keep their leg up is because they have strong back muscles. Is this true? If so, how can I strengthen my back muscles? If it isn't, what can I do to hold my arabesque?



Nutmegdancer :)

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Cassie, "having a strong back" is an important part of getting good arabesque line, but it's not the only part. The student needs to be well pulled up in the FRONT of the body, too, in particular, through the lower abdominal muscles. Also the standing leg can't act merely as someplace to put weight. The lift up must come through there, too, especially at the hips. No weight slumping into the supporting hip. Despite the absolute ideal of a completely-squared-off torso in all directions in developpé, it has to unidealize when it comes to arabesque. To the front and to the side, you have a clear path, but to the back, you have the original factory-installed seat cushions, which are in the way. You have to open, ever so slightly, the working hip, so that the leg has somewhere to go.

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Here's a post from Miss Leigh that also may help:



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Which post, DanaD?

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Ah. Ok. First try reading through this topic: ARABESQUE


You can't post there because it's on the Adult Ballet Student board, but it may help you understand arabesque better!


If you still have questions after reading it, let us know! :)

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Dana, what confuses you about that post? If you can tell me, perhaps I can help to clarify it for you.

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