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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Fifth Position


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I'm currently at a summer intensive (won't say which for privacy) and learning tons. But on Saturday, I had a new teacher for technique than my usual mix. She instructed me to close my feet entirely in fifth so that my toes are touching my heels. I had been told before the put my heel to the opposite toe joint. Which is correct, or is it something that depends on class or company?

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There are differences in ways of teaching 5th position, but most schools want the front heel to go to the big toe, but not all will insist on the front toe/back heel being totally connected. That would be a "perfect" 5th, with 180 degree rotation of each leg. However, some methods do not force that much rotation unless the student has the ability to do it without bending a knee or rolling the knees and ankles. One must always work towards that perfect 5th, but if you do it by forcing out the feet, and the rotation of the legs from the hips is not there, that is not good. However, you must always also try to do what is being asked by any teacher for that class. In an SI, with a lot of teachers, some of them guest teachers, you need to expect some differences.

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