Ballet Exercises - Stretching
Hi, my name is Hana. Last 2006 (I was 8 years old), i studied ballet but I stopped due to some reasons, but now, I want to study ballet again and I'm 14. I tried to do some ballet stretching, but my body isn't stretchable anymore. So, I want to ask you if is there any tips you can give me to make my body flexible again like before? Thank you so much!
Reply by Odette
To:- Ballet Exercises - Stretching
Thank you for contacting me it is great to hear from you. Don't worry, it is completely natual for you to not be as flexible as you were all those years ago. Even when ballet dancers take a week or two off, they can already feel their muscles getting more stiff even after this short break.
No matter how much we train our bodies in ballet, your muscles can get less flexible. Especially if your body isn't naturally loose, it can feel more tight than it did in your last ballet class.
The good thing is, you can work your body to become more flexible with time and patience. You must realise it is a gradual process and flexibility does not come in an instant, so you have to keep working at it to improve.
Especially because you have taken a lot of time away from ballet, it is good to start very basic to slowly build the flexibility again. I would really recommend exercises like Pilates or Yoga, because they really target the muscles to create both flexibility and strength.
I would work on all your muscle groups that you use in ballet like the glutes, hamstrings, quads and calves just to get your whole body more supple again.
Then, you can work more into the more challenging ballet stretches like the splits. However, you must always stretch when your muscles are warm and ready. Before or after ballet class is the ideal time to work on your stretches.
Your muscles will feel tight from time to time, but breathe deeply into the stretch and don't push it too far. You don't want to tear or strain your muscles, so work carefully and sensibly.
Keep in touch!
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