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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Fouettes on "weak" leg


Ice-Dancer

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In my open class, we do a sequence from the corner (pique turn, fouette, pique trun, fouette, pique turn, fouette fouette fouette.) Embarrassingly enough, I'm the only one that can't do fouette turns on one side (turning on my left leg with my right leg being the working leg.) This has always been my "weaker" side, but even before my break from ballet to have surgery, I had my fouettes on this side. Since returning, I feel like my left ankle just isn't string enough to do the fouette. I'm embarassed to even attempt a fouette, so I usually just do the fouette motion into a releve passe (if that makes sense). In the times I attempt a fouette, I feel like I'm hopping into the fouette (I think this is due to lack of strength).

 

Are there any exercises I can do to improve fouettes on my weak side? Thanks.

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I'm an awfully big fan of plie-releves. If you can comfortably do 32 plain plie-releves on your left leg at the barre (with the R in retire or sur le coup de pied back or someplace) great! If not, I'd recommend doing that first. Then transition to (at the barre) doing what you're doing in center -- doing fouette turns without the turn part, by doing plie 5th, releve in retire with the arm in first, plie with a developpe devant, releve as you open the arm and leg to second, and bring everything into passé and arm to first, hold for a beat and repeat that 32 times, until you feel strong and comfy doing that again. Then I'd go back and try in the center again.

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I'm afraid I can't understand the combination since pique turns are typically en de dans and fouetté turns are en dehors. Are these lame ducks into plié fouetté?

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I'm afraid I can't understand the combination since pique turns are typically en de dans and fouetté turns are en dehors. Are these lame ducks into plié fouetté?

 

I'm assuming the en dedan pique turn is ending in a coupe under, which releases the devant leg to do the en dehor fouette...

 

As for another stepping stone, sometimes especially after a break or injury the mind can play tricks on us. If you can successfully do the combination with a releve but no turn, perhaps it isn't a pure strength issue but a co-ordination or confidence issue. What about trying the fouette with the working foot just at ankle height? Or trying the sequence without the music and just one pique/one fouette at a time? Slower helps sometime too - the main thing is just keep practicing! :)

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