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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Where do shoulders go?


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Hello everyone,


Oftentimes, students shrug their shoulders and teachers tell them "Shoulders down."


I've also heard people say "imagine your shoulders and arms expanding to the sides instead of down."


I've also heard people say "imagine them coming towards each other staying very attached to your back instead of down."


(This is not verbatim, and I don't remember the sources)


My question is, where should I feel my shoulders going, besides up??



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Guest Pas de Quoi

Hello Creative Dancer:


I suggest you start a library of dance theory and practice books, as I see you are contemplating teaching (good for you! I love what I do!) and here are two I have found very helpful for me both as a dancer and a dance educator:


Dance Anatomy by Jacqui Haas and Conditioning for Dance by Eric Franklin. They will be useful to you to help you find the answers to questions such as the one you have posed, above. I think, for my dancers, they benefit from reading and then performing the various exercises these two dance fitness professionals describe in their books, outside of our regular classes. Ms. Haas' information is a bit easier to assimilate than that of Mr. Franklin, but I absolutely love Mr. Franklin's illustrations and analogies.


You can also try viewing the many very good videos on YouTube done by Lisa Howell and Deborah Vogel.


Good luck to you and happy learning! :)

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