Ballet Alignment for the Healthy Dancer

Dancing Stronger, Dancing Longer

Over rotation of the hips has been a part of ballet training for many years. Here at Dance Discovery we use contemporary ballet methods to protect the hips from over rotation. This helps dancers to avoid injury and dance for a longer number of years.

We introduce the students to all of the positions for ballet at a young age; however we only work in a few positions to ensure safety. Proper alignment in each position is mastered before adding more ballet positions. We have outlined the age appropriate goals according to the most recent human development research for dancing at each stage of development. We want our dancers to dance longer and stronger for years to come!

Age 3-4 Working in 1st position of the feet only to the point of rotation from the top of each child’s own natural hip alignment is the primary focus of this age group.

Age 5-6 Working in 1st and 2nd positions of the feet, stressing the alignment of the knees over the toes following each child’s natural hip alignment is perfected. Students learn to feel the proper alignment internally while moving from one position to the next at this age.

Ages 7-10 Complicated work in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd positions of the feet is introduced at this age. Instructors stress the alignment of the knees over the toes following hip rotation and alignment throughout choreography. At this age rotation stretching and strengthening exercises are incorporated for healthy, safe, development of further hip rotation.

Only advanced dancers work in 4th and 5th positions of the feet and teachers help dancers of all ages understand and listen to their own bodies, so that they can maintain and appreciate their own healthy body alignment throughout all ballet positions. In this way we train our students to be equipped in the worlds of both classical and contemporary dance choreography, while ensuring their healthy body alignment.