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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Weight distribution over the foot


Lidewij

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Hello everyone,

 

I have read the thread on the teacher's forum about weight distribution on the feet a few weeks ago and have been thinking a lot about this. I found out that I let my weight drop into my heels as soon as one foot leaves the ground, and have been trying to correct this.

 

I know about thinking of the foot as a tripod, and keeping all the toes on the ground, and this helps a bit. I can usually manage keeping my weight where it should be in adagio. Only on faster moving things it gets difficult. 'Linear' things like jetés are okay, but I get into big trouble with rond de jambe à terre.

 

And this last week one of my teachers has said something about me gripping the barre too much, several times. I know that this is caused (at least partially) by the sitting in the heel.

 

Do you have any imagery or tips for me to improve this?

 

Thank you!

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Drop your wrist on the hand on the barre and do not allow the fingers to go around it nor the thumb under it. Rest the fingers gently on top. Keep checking to see that you are not back in your heel. If your weight is placed correctly, where there is freedom to move but also balance, then keep it there! It's up to you. There are no tricks or shortcuts. :wink: Like everything else in ballet, it takes time and patience and very focused attention.

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Thank you for your reply, Ms. Leigh! I already thought that would be the answer.

 

I'm very glad that I found out about this major problem in my technique. It's frustrating that my teachers never noticed/corrected me on it and that I had to find out myself by reading this amazing board. Although the one that corrected me on my barre arm might be onto it now.

 

I'll just keep on working and doing my best every class to improve. :)

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Teaching isn't an easy job. The teacher has to think about the class as a whole. A teacher gives corrections, but unless the class is extremely small, the teacher can only give a few specific corrections. That's why I think serious students have to be responsible for their own development by reading, watching, listening, and most of all by going to lots of classes.

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I understand that, Garyecht, and I do really have a lot of respect for my teachers and what they do. Now that I read it again it sounds worse than I meant it. :)

 

I learned a LOT about ballet since restarting six years ago, and I have to say that about 70% of all that information I got from reading and watching videos and other classes. Unfortunately it is not possible for me at this moment to take more classes/with different teachers, but maybe that will change in the future.

 

Thanks for your reply

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Lidewij, my childhood ballet teacher used some imagery to stop us from gripping onto the barre like a life raft: Imagine that you are resting your fingers on a piece of velvet. I really like this concept of the foot as a tripod - that image frees up the arch too, perhaps!

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