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Ballet Talk for Dancers
ascballerina

Regaining Stamina

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ascballerina

I've had issues similar to exercise-induced asthma for the last year or so. In December, they got worse. Take a dancer who had never sat down in between exercises in her life, and was suddenly forced to sit out exercises because she couldn't breathe, and you pretty much have me.

 

I don't want to talk about the asthma, I know that's beyond the scope of this forum, I just wanted to give you background.

 

Lately, for various reasons, I've been breathing a lot better. Breathing better means that a) I no longer have to pace myself, and b ) I no longer have to sit down in between/sit out altogether exercises. So now, I find that in the four months since I had to start doing this, I understand how to do jumps better, and more of course is expected when we do them.

 

The sissonne exercise is where my breathing problems always used to kick in (or thereabouts, but sissonne usually took whatever issues had started and made them worse, since it's the first jump after the petit allegro). So now, I go in, able to breathe for the most part, and find that I can do about half, sometimes the whole sissonne exercise really, really well, and then when I go to do the other side, or finish the second half, my legs literally give up. Jumping feels impossible. My legs don't hurt, they just seem to shut down, and say "we're done, that's all we've got".

 

I'm sure it's normal to have such a stamina loss in my muscles after this breathing issue, but it's the complete faliure thing that worries me. I get a second wind somewhere around grands jetes en tournent, and of course, I've been forcing myself to at least get off the ground, but is it normal to have such an occurrence? And is gritting my teeth and working through it the best way to deal with it? Is there anything else I can do?

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Victoria Leigh

Regaining stamina takes time and patience, and can't be forced. Try to work as long as you feel strong, and maybe just a little tiny bit more each day. However, this is really a matter for help from a physician, as it does involve the asthma problem, and you need to know what to expect and what your limitations are since having this problem.

 

I'm going to have to close this, asc, because it can't help involving medical advice. Sorry!

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