Ballet Exercises - Higher Extension in Développé

Ballet Exercises - Higher Extension in Développé: -

How do I get a higher extension in my developpes?

I have tried to get a higher extension but cannot do you have any tips for strengthening and flexibility?


Reply by Odette

To:- Ballet Exercises - Higher Extension in Développé


Thank you for your queries.

As a student, I was constantly trying to increase my flexibility and extensions so I completely understand how you feel.

My first tip would be to make sure during all your ballet classes you really push your legs higher than usually would in all the exercises. A teacher once told me, "You will never get your legs higher if you're always comfortable with the height they are at. You have to push past your comfort zone in order to get higher legs."

Secondly, make sure you stretch during or after class to increase flexibility. Take advantage of when your body is warm to do deeper stretches such as, holding your leg up high to the side with your hand and keeping it there continually increasing the height.

You can take a look at my ballet stretches page for further information!

All the best


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Ballet Exercises - Higher Legs

Ballet Exercises - Higher Legs

How can I get my leg higher? I know that really good dancers can lift their legs without holding on to anything. I'm not sure what the proper name is for it! Right now I can get my leg to 90 degrees, and that's it. How can I get it higher?


Reply by Odette

To:- Ballet Exercises - Higher Legs


Thank you for your query, it is great to hear from you.

Ballet dancers are able to lift their legs high in movements such as, grand battement (high kicks) or adage (slower and more controlled).

Flexibility takes a lot of strength, as well as supple muscles. It is often hard to find that balance of flexibility and strength.

I would advise you to focus on flexibility stretches such as the splits or placing your leg higher on the barre in devant, second and derriere. After class is the ideal moment to do deeper more intense stretches because this is the time when your muscles are most warm.

As for building strength, this will come in time as you gradually build more power in your muscles.

My personal tip would be always make sure you try your hardest to hold your legs above 90 degrees, because your legs will never get the height unless you push for it. Even if it is just the smallest bit higher, it will gradually make a difference and build more strength in your muscles.

Attack all your flexibility movements, as the momentum will help you get higher legs.

All the best,


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