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ballet class


Ballet class tips


I am blogging today by request on the ever popular subject for dancers: TURNOUT!
At Auckland Academy of Adult Ballet, we offer various workshops once a month to focus on a different area of need within a dancers body.
Look out for our next Turnout Workshop!


It is important when you start ballet that you don’t “over turn out”your feet.
As a teacher, I will ask you to stand in 1st or 3rd position, with your toes pointed outward.
That is the direction that dancers must always adopt for aesthetic reasons.
However, there is a misconception that this turned out stance originates from the ankles.
Your turnout must originate from the top of the thighs, in the hips.
The degree of your individual turnout is dictated by your personal pelvic structure.
So that if you are standing in 1st & you feel pulling in the front of the ankle or knees, this means you are turning out more that the real turnout allowed by your pelvis.
Accordingly, bring the toes in a little to relieve this tension.
Try a demi plie. Your knees should now track directly over your toes, with the thighs well pressed back to your hip rotation’s maximum ability.


As covered in a recent turnout workshop, we worked on the turnout muscles behind/under the bottom.
Think of the muscle that wraps around the bottom of your leotard line & under the crutch.
Practice standing in 1st position relaxing all the gluteal muscles.
Then gently squeeze the lower glute muscles in & around underneath the bottom , but keeping the upper glutes soft.
It’s like holding a pencil under your bottom!
See how the thighs automatically rotate outwards as you perform this squeeze, then totally relax them and observe the thighs rolling back inwards.
These are the muscles that help you maintain your turnout.
In Ballet class, if you train yourself to activate these lower gluteals so they are always gently ”on”, you will be able to hold your turn out especially when lifting your leg en l’air.


At the next Turnout Workshop, we will cover the tennis ball releasing of hips to relieve tightness & improve our turnout further!

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