CriticalDance Forum

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Author:  ballet_girl [ Thu May 17, 2001 4:30 am ]
Post subject:  Questions

Thif forum is great! I have lots of questions. I am (I hope!) quite a strong, supple & athletic dancer but I can't do the splits. This is obviously needed in grande jetes and eventually 180'arabesque en pointe etc. I think it is mainly a mental ( help-will I hurt myself)thing but also partly suppleness aswell. My turnout is quite good (and improving). My front extension is greater than 90' but not near 180', my side extension is the same and back extension is 90'+ a little. Has anyone got any good exercises for improving this it is quite depressing. Secondly I am having an (enforced-parents)break form classes at the moment due to A-levels, obviously I will continue to practise daily. My pointe work is strong and so are my feet but I'm concerned about injuring myself when not under my teachers eagle eye (obviously I won't be doing any new or particularly difficult work). If I feel no pain in any part of my anatomy during or hours/days after do i assume that I am doing no harm?<BR>Lastly (sorry)I hate my feet (toes are alright). maybe I'm imagining it but my insteps seem to have lowered recently (esp. left)HELP! Is there anything I can do to aid this. Do feet en pointe still look nice if instep is lower. What height is too low? (I am not flat footed). I have noticed a great variety of instep heights at performances. Finally is 5ft 5 and 8 stone(max-natural mostly muscle) too tall and heavy for a possible professional career?<BR>Thanks so much for reading this

Author:  Basheva [ Thu May 17, 2001 5:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Questions

First Ballet Girl let me welcome you to the board - it is a pleasure to have you join us.<P>You have asked a lot of questions - let's see if I can help.<P>There is a thread that can answer many of your questions about different types of feet and here is the link:<P><A HREF=../../../ubb/Forum7/HTML/000332.html><B>POINTE - ASSESSING READINESS</B></A><P>In this next thread is advice about working on your extensions:<P><A HREF=../../../ubb/Forum7/HTML/000291.html><B>STRETCH AND STRENGTH</B></A><P><A HREF=../../../ubb/Forum7/HTML/000407.html><B>DEVELOPPES</B></A><P>Please read all the way through the threads.<P>As for your having a break from class: I would say that you can work at home, carefully, on just barre, but as for pointe I certainly would hesitate to recommend anything more than a few relevés. You didn't mention how long you have been on pointe, so it is hard for me to assess your knowledge level.<P>While pain is certainly a sign of trouble, it is not the only sign. You could have no pain, but in practicing without a teacher you could be learning bad habits - like incorrect alignment. So anything you do to practice on your own at the barre, keep it very simple.<P>Here was a discussion you might want to read on Body Proportions - since you asked that question:<P><BR><A HREF=../../../ubb/Forum7/HTML/000356.html><B>BODY PROPORTIONS</B></A><P>There are also more threads like this. See the "search" at the top of the right hand side of the page? You can use that to find lots of information.<P>Once again welcome, Ballet Girl - <P><p>[This message has been edited by Basheva (edited May 17, 2001).]

Author:  katheryn [ Thu May 17, 2001 9:33 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Questions

Basheva, how long would you recommend that a student study pointe before being allowed to do releves and other steps on her own at home?

Author:  Basheva [ Thu May 17, 2001 11:09 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Questions

Katheryn - generally speaking I would say about a year. But that, too, is very individual. Some people make a tremendous amount of progress within one year - and others less so. Also it can depend on other problems or attributes, like the construction of the feet.<P>If a student has a tightly constructed foot and has difficulty getting over her platforms with her knee straight, then I would hesitate to have her work on her relevés by herself. Conversely if she has hyper extended knees - she needs to be checked that she is not pushing back on those knees.<P>If she has a flexible losely constructed foot with a high instep - then she needs to be checked that she is not rolling over too far. <P>Sorry, I can't give you a definitive answer. There are too many variables involved. The best thing to do is to really pay attention to corrections one has been given in class, learn what kind of feet you have, and what kinds of problems you have to deal with. And you could also talk to the teacher and ask what she recommends as "homework".

Author:  Maggie [ Thu May 17, 2001 11:45 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Questions

Very thorough on the feet and knees. I would like to add a strong center with good awareness of pelvic placement. Particulary for one with hyper-extended knees.

Author:  Basheva [ Thu May 17, 2001 12:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Questions

Great addition, Maggie, thank you.

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