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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Knees?


balletpassionforpointe

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It always bothers me that my knees look bent when I stand in parallel, turn out, in arabesque, ect. My teachers always tell me to straighten my knees but they are straightened, they just look bent. Advice? (I know their is a topic like this in the 17-22 age forem, but as I can't comment there, I made my topic here)

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Did you find the information on that topic helpful, balletpassion? If it answered your question or not, please comment on your thoughts here so that we know how to help you without restating what was already stated there. :)

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On the other topic, a girl asked the same question as me, but someone (I believe it was you) asked if her knees were hypoextended (what does hypoextended mean?)

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It is the opposite of hyperextended, where the knees go back further than straight. Hypoextended legs just won't quite straighten all the way.

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I have the exact same problem! After getting that correction about 10 times per class (in different forms) I decided to ask my teacher if there was anything I could do that would make them appear straighter because I am pulling them up and straightening them as much as possible. She had me go to the barre and put my leg in a 45 degree arabesque. She then told me to straighten me knee, after I did she grabbed my foot and my thigh (so that I wouldn't fall back) and pulled on my foot with force. SHe asked me if I felt "that"? I told her that I felt a very strong pull (not having a better word for it) and she told me that when she tells me to straighten my knee she of corse means to straighten my knee but she also wants me to "lengthen" every single bone in my leg. She told me that whenever I am told to straighten my knees I should think of three things:

1) Pulling my leg up from the tip of my toe to my hip (ESPECIALLY YOUR KNEE CAP)

2) Lengthening my entire leg

3) Maintaining a straight knee for the entire time necessary

Hope this helped! :)

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There is such a thing as not actually being able to straighten the knees all the way, and that is what hypoextension means. If the dancer is ABLE to fully straighten, but is not yet doing it, then those things would help. However, we first need to know if the dancer is hypoextended or not.

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I'm not sure if my knees are hypoextended or not, how do I tell?

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When you stand facing the mirror in parallel and in first position, in good alignment of course, and engaging your core, glutes and quad muscles, do they look totally straight? Can you see the definition of your quad muscles?

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