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Ballet Talk for Dancers

tippy hips


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This is my first year on pointe, and I am struggling to keep my hips up (they tend to "tip" back). I know that it is very important to keep my hips up and out of the way so that my legs can be completely straight. This problem developed when I started pointe and it never used to affect my technique. Any suggestions on how to strengthen muscles that are causing the problem or why this is happening? Thanks :)

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It sounds like you have lost control of the abdominal and gluteal muscles :) This would allow the pelvis to tip forward and the derrière goes back. When this happens your back is swayed and you lose control of your rotation too. Not a good thing! Work on strengthening your abs! In class, put those clothes pins on your hip bones and pull them up :D Use your gluteus maximus (derrière) muscles too! Feel the weight of the body lifted out of the heels. If you are hyperextending your legs and pushing back into your heels, or just working with your weight too far back that could also cause the problem.

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You are right about me working with my weight back on my heels:( I guess I can't be afraid of getting my weight up and on top of the box when on pointe. As soon as I lifted my weight forward, I had more lift in my hips and better rotation and turnout:) Yea!!! Thank you for the help.


Does anyone know of any good books on alignment, body positions/movements or anatomy for dance?

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The classic on the topic is Celia Sparger's Anatomy and Ballet. It's out of print, but should be available to you through your library, via interlibrary loan if it's not in their collection. You can also buy your own copy through Amazon.com and their used books service. Just click the banner at the top of every Ballet Talk page.:)

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