Ballet Exercises - Splits and La Fille Mal Gardee

Ballet Exercises - Splits and La Fille Mal Gardee






Odette,
Do you know the best tip for getting the straddle splits? My goal is to have them perfect in summer!

Also, I have found a beautiful variation from La Fille Mal Gardee. Here is the link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzti7YD9CDU
How does the dancer do the pas de bourres at the beginning? (if they are pas de bourres?!)

Orla :)

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Reply by Odette
To:- Ballet Exercises - Splits and La Fille Mal Gardee

Hi Orla,
Thanks for your message! What wonderful photos and a superb link to the variation, I am glad you are doing your researh to keep inspired!

I have to say, even my eyes bulged at those pas de bourres at the beginning! You could easily not recognise them for being pas de bourees, because they are very extreme and exaggerated, but incredibly danced by the ballerina on stage.

The way she is travelling and being so light on her feet is very skillful. It is a step which is made look effortless, yet not many dancers would be able to do with such ease.

I expect it would have taken her a lot of practice too achieve too, but here are some observations I have made to how shes does it -

* She is moving her hips to travel! One teacher told me, the hips are the main area to move when you



want to travel. It's right, because even though the step is in the feet, it is the whole body and hips which have to take the movement to travel.

* She is keeping light on her feet. If you notice, the dancer is hardly staying on pointe for long and it is almost like quick little runs on pointe. Imagine that the floor is hot like an oven and you don't want to keep your feet touching the floor for very long.

* She is using her second foot. If you observe how quick her second foot comes in for the pas de bouree, you will see it is very fast which helps quicken the movement. The second foot is key to creating the step and allowing you to move with that speed.

If I were to try this step, I would think about keep my posture and core extremely held to move with that speed. Also, to travel way MORE than I think to creating the running on pointe. It is a tricky step, but I hope that has helped make it down for you. It's not impossible, but takes a lot of practice and repetition to get it as fluid as the dancer on the video.

Here is a link to page which has several questions and answers for straddle splits, I think you would find it helpful -

The Box Splits Positions

Best wishes,
Odette

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