Jump to content
Ballet Talk for Dancers to close ×
Ballet Talk for Dancers

Full Arabesque Stretches!

Guest sylphide*4ever

Recommended Posts

Guest sylphide*4ever

Ms. Leigh and Major Johnson,


I have a decent 90-degree arabesque with a good forward/upward movement in my upper body and back. However, when my leg begins to move up over 90 degrees, I lose the upward feeling in my back. I have a pretty strong and straight back, but it is not very flexible (I have trouble doing a bridge.) How can I stretch my back to make it more flexible.



Link to comment

I fixed it, syl, no problem.


Now, as to what to do about your arabesque, it strikes me that this is an issue of strength and not so much flexibility.


Try this one: Stand away from a barre or other support facing it, and far enough away so that you can bend completely forward and grasp the support for...well, support! Bend all the way forward, grasping the barre, and do a tendu back. Come back up, keeping the back foot where it is. Then repeat the bend forward, but this time raise the back foot to 45º. Come back up, as before. Repeat the bend again, and this time take the leg to 60º. Then again and go to 90º! Be sure to do this on both sides an equal number of times. Anytime you go over 90º, you're technically more or less into a penché, so think of feeling like somebody's pulling on the tip of your toe and the end of your middle finger of the forward arm.

Link to comment
Guest pavlovadancer

My back isn't very flexible....are there any exercises to improve flexibility?


My penche is pretty low....if I want to get it to 150 degrees, it often takes longer than the counts given to get into the penche? Are there any ways of improving my time (this is starting to sound like a swimming competition...)? :(

Link to comment

Sure there's an exercise for improving back flexibility - it's called port de bras. Or sometimes cambré back.;)


Really, that's one of the things that element of barre/centre barre is there for. There's no magic pill that will suddenly make you rest your bun on your buns (well, yes there is, but you won't be awake after you take it;) ), but gradual slow improvement over time is what's needed.

Link to comment
  • Administrators

My favorite one is to do a penché facing the barre. Stand back away from it far enough that when you are standing in the tendu back you can't reach the barre, but when you start into the penché you will reach it. Go to your max in the penché and then HOLD the leg there and bring your back up.

Link to comment

That one's great for both flexibility AND strength! The one I suggested earlier kind of works up to it. :(

Link to comment
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...