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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Hypermobility in Adults


a-little-bookworm

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Hello everyone,

 

My name is Jodie and I am a 24 year old that has been doing ballet for about 1 1/2 years. I found out recently that I have hypermobility in most of my body.

 

  1. This is not something which naturally helps me as it may be throwing me off balance, is there any tip anyone has?
  2. During my training to do a Grand Battement I am unable to lift my leg up as high as i would need. Just getting it straight, parallel to the flood, is difficult enough. On top of that I am unable to maintain it so that my leg automatically drops to the floor, which is not great. Is this because my muscles are too tight? If so how would I correct it?
  3. Another thing, as a child I was always taught to never let my legs lock back and to always keep them straight. However, because of that my teacher keeps saying I need to straighten my legs more as they seem to be ever so slightly bent forward. Should I let my legs dip back in ballet?

If there is anyone that could offer me some advice I would really appreciate it.

 

All the best

Jodie

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Welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers, Jodie!

 

Hypermobility may be the cause of some problems, but it sounds to me as if the main problem is a lack of core strength, alignment, lift out of the hips, and weight placement. These things need to be taught to all dancers from the beginning. If this is not happening in your classes, you need to find a teacher who can help you. Some Pilates work could also be helpful.

 

This would apply to balance, inabillity to control the leg lowering slowly and under control in grand battement, and to the inability to straighten your knees by keeping your weight out of the heels and using the abs, quads, and gluteus muscles. It is possible to totally straighten the knees without locking them back, but that also takes a teacher with the ability to see the problem and correct it, not just tell you that they are not straight.

 

Check out the 'Pinned' topics at the top of this forum. There is a great topic there on alignment, rotation, etc. :)

 

http://dancers.invisionzone.com/index.php?showtopic=35504

 

(I moved your topic to Adult Ballet Students because it is about technique. :) Also, I would like to ask you to please don't change the font on your posts. It is very small and harder to read. Thank you!)

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I know many folks with hypermobility and I hit the requirements for it when I was young myself. Strength training is important for any dancer but especially for someone with hypermobility because it helps protects you from injuries caused by being too flexible. Pilates is awesome, especially if you get a teacher who really understands the hypermobile body. If you do other types of conditioning/strength training, you may want to at least consult with someone to make sure you're doing it just so, as you'll need to do somethings different from the average person.

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