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Ballet Talk for Dancers

The correct way to pirouette on pointe


swan#7

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I wouldn't consider myself a natural turner, but I can turn cleanly on both sides, and I'm starting to do triples en dehors and en dedan. However, I have a huge issue with pirrouettes on pointe. Over the summer one teacher helped me to do a quad (from fourth), but ever since I haven't been able to do them quite the same. Another teacher seems to think my pirrouettes are pretty good, while yet another one of my teachers says I don't spring enough. When I spring, I feel like I'm jumping, when I roll up it's wrong, so I feel like I usually try an in between of a kind of push up, but then I'm told it's not springy enough? I feel like I've seen people turn both ways? Anyway, what can I do to fix this because I've been so upset about my pirrouettes lately because I feel like I'm finally progressing the way I want, except for this annoying pointe issue!

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You are over thinking it, swan#7. Seriously. Just do what you do on demi pointe. A pirouette is a pirouette. If you can do it on demi, you can do it on pointe as long as you have a decent relevé and all the other ingredients are working for you just as they are on demi. Pirouettes are actually a lot easier on pointe. Less friction, easier to turn.

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That's what I thought because I (use to) can whip out a triple pirouette from fifth, while on flat shoes I can only do doubles. I'm not trying to over think, but what has been working for me isn't correct, and I'm just wondering what I should do. I don't want to seem rude to my teacher by continuing to do it the way it works for me, because she keeps insisting I kind of pop up on pointe.

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  • 2 months later...

What I find useful to do on pointe is do a stronger relève than I would do off pointe. Also I like to make sure I'm fully on pointe before I turn.

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May I ask how you are sure you are fully on pointe before you turn? The turn starts at the moment of relevé!

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Well, you feel it. If your not fully on pointe then you go off balance during the turn. You can feel it when your relève is fully on pointe. I don't know you just can.

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The turn of the body and the push from the demi plié to the relevé happen at the same time. If you are delaying the turn, it's not going to work very well, especially for more than one turn.

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The one huge difference I feel about turning on pointe is the fear factor. With a pirouette on flat, I always just go for it. On pointe I often have a moment of hesitation- a moment that causes my plié to stop being active and my turn to be lost. I suppose the cause of this fear is I'v been doing pirouettes on flat over twice as long as pirouettes on pointe. It's irrational, but it happens anyway!

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  • 1 month later...

I have the same issue, Dancergirl114! I doubt myself the second I'm transitioning from my preperation to releve and loses the momentum in my turn. How can I fix this Miss Leigh?

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Doubt, or fear of anything causes an automatic response in the body. One pulls away from fear. Self doubt can have the same effect because you hold back. When you decide that pirouettes on point are fun, and actually easier than on demi pointe, you will be able to attack them with more confidence. But that takes time and of course a LOT of practice....and patience! And then there are all of the technical factors, like strength of alignment, relevés on pointe, maintaining core strength, use of the right muscles to create the turning, of course SPOT, and a very good retiré position. :)

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  • 5 months later...

I sometimes get scared before doing pirouettes and stop focusing on what I should be and start focusing on how scared I am or if I'm going to fall. Especially en pointe, I get scared of going up all the way and end up stuck halfway which can hurt.

Edited by Victoria Leigh
Advice removed.
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