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Performing turns


Often audience gets baffled seeing a dancer doing continues turns on their single leg, it seems like a top or like a coin is spun by hand.

This staple step in the ballet world, often effortless to watch, executing a pirouette is not easy to perfect! Almost Every Ballet Dancer is found to be obsessed with Pirouettes & works hard to add maximum number of pirouette to his/her account.

This step applies the physics of rotation and here I am not going to discuss how to do a pirouette rather I will mention how to complete one.

“The intension in a pirouette influences the execution of it.”

Head pulled up – Release the stress on neck by pulling the heavy head upward before you start. The neck automatically feels longer and lighter on the shoulder.

Preparation – The preparation by weight distribution in the center of the 4th or 5th feet position, apt amount of Plie on the legs, placement of feet on the supporting leg, high releve arch and straight supporting leg are some significant points to focus. In your preparation, visualize where your hips need to end up and guide them forward over the big toe of your turning leg as you relevé. The dancer pushes off their back foot, creating momentum and giving them enough speed to turn around themselves.

Keep your weight forward – It is common to fall backward out of a pirouette because your weight is not centered up and forward over the standing leg.

Equal rotation – You want to ensure that both legs are staying equally rotated from your preparation to the end of your pirouette. Align your ribs over your pelvis and keep this connection throughout the turn.

Strong arms – If your arms are doing too much or too little, your balance and momentum can be affected. Your arms should be in a strong first position with the elbows lifted and shoulders down. Avoid swinging the arms in your take-off or letting the elbows sink in your pirouette. Arms should be lifted from the back, the rounded elbows should facilitate spinning.

Spotting – Your head should be the only part moving separately from the rest of your body in a pirouette.

Due to the fact the dancer is their own axis, it is imperative they keep this axis as close to vertical as possible which can be accomplished by ensuring that their center of mass stays centered on top of their supporting leg by using good core strength. Remember that a pirouette is not a spin, but a controlled up and down movement that happens to rotate.

Graceful finish is important. Practice, practice, practice! Repetition and experience are essential to mastering turns.


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