Ballet barres are the key to a dancer's strength and stability. Discover here how the ballet bar can help you soar through your ballet classes and improve you as a dancer.
With so much practice on the ballet bar it is easy to forget it' s significance, or even realize its importance. The exercises at the barre are the fundamental aspects to all the movements for center work, and the whole strength of your dancing.
When you practice at the barre, it is the most important time to work on your technique.
Even at a professional level for dancers, they still have to practice barre exercises everyday.
The bar work is a huge part to keep all professional dancer's in top shape.
Believe it or not, every exercise you do at the ballet barre is closely associated with the ballet moves which come later in the class. You may be surprised at how strong the connection is particularly between the exercises at the barre and ballet jumps.
Here are some great examples of how the barre links directly to the more challenging ballet moves in center work -
Plies: Plies prepare your legs for the different depths of plies used in later movements. For example, Petit Allegro uses a medium-sized plie, whereas Grand Allegro will use a much deeper, powerful plie.
Frappes: Frappes gets your feet active and ready for jumps and batterie work. The fast footwork resembles quicker ballet jumps such as Jete Battu, Assemble Battu or Brisé.
Grand Battement: This definitely gets you ready for Grand Allegro. The speed at which you throw your leg in grand battement, resembles the throwing of your legs in a grand jete.
The more power you have in grand battement, the more power and speed you will have to jump high off the floor for a grand jete.
You can see ere how key each exercise is to the development of later movements. Few dancers realize the importance of the ballet bar, therefore don't take advantage of the valuable time in which barre gives.
It is essential to commit your attention to each exercise in order to advance your technique as a dancer. From the very first plie at the barre, you can think about the different depths of the plie as it is the fundamental element for ballet jumps. No dancer can move fluidly without their plie.
The solution is, improve your strength at the barre and it will improve your strength in your overall technique. No dancer can expect to do all the showy and virtuoso ballet moves if the base technique is not secure. The ballet barre is the primary place to refine your strength.
I know the barre exercises can often seem tedious and long. I remember feeling as though the bar was a real chore, until I realized what importance it had on my strength as a dancer.
It is so easy to go through the motions at the ballet barre, but next time you go to your class, really think about the purpose of the exercise as to how it will help you with particular ballet steps.