Today's message is on the importance of ballet for aspiring dancers. Whether you love ballet or not it is crucial to your training as a dancer to take ballet class and work hard at it. Dancers should be aware of body placement principals and use them while they dance. Alignment of the body is extremely important. The spine must be lengthened with no sway in the low back. The ribs are held softly and not allowed to protrude forward. The weight of the body is shifted slightly forward toward the front of the feet, with the armpits aligned over the hips. If the weight is not forward dancers will fall back out of turns and balances or develop the wrong muscles to hold themselves in the incorrect position, (i.e., overdeveloped thighs). The whole premise of ballet training is to work in a turned out position. The majority of turnout happens from the hip socket, with a lesser amount happening in the lower legs and feet. Turnout should always be developed from the hips with the use of the rotator muscles. For more information on ballet principals take a look at this additional information.
The proper development of alignment and strength in the dancer's body is crucial regardless of what style of dance is your favorite. Jazz, modern, lyrical, musical theater, even tap all require an understanding of body alignment and placement. For example, modern uses a great deal of off center movement. To find off center movement dancers must first be able to be on center and have the strength developed to hold that centered movement. Developing strong feet and ankles is not just crucial for the ballet dancer, but for all dance forms. Think of the leaps and turns and quick direction changes in jazz dance, or the constant use of the feet and ankles in tap dance. All the dance forms compliment each other with ballet being the core class. Through ballet classes dancers learn about posture and placement. They learn to create lines with the body, by extending the arms and hands, and legs and feet. They learn about port de bras or the carriage of the arms from the back and the opening of the energy in the chest. They learn about epaulment and the different angles of the head. All of these principals are there for the dancer to use in ballet class and to take with them to use in all of the other dance forms. Just do it dancers, take good ballet classes and work at mastering the technique no matter what your favorite dance form may be!