Ballet Positons - Five Basic Arms

Ballet Positons - Five Basic Arms

Dear Odette,

My daughter is learning ballet and her teacher has asked her to find the names of the various hand movements done in ballet, e.g., what do you call a position when the hands are held over the head and are bent in the wrists and many more such positions.

Hoping you would be able to help me.

Thanking you,


Reply by Odette
To: - Ballet Positons - Five Basic Arms

Hello Radnika,
Thank you for your message, it's great to hear from you. I would be delighted to help you. The basic positions in the arms are very similar to those in the feet, so there are the five main positions: First Position, Second, Third, Fourth and Fifth.

The position you are describing with the hands above the head is Fifth Position. The rest are as follows:

First Position: the arms are held infront of the body in a circular and rounded position. They should be placed just opposite the sternum.

Second Position: each arm is held sideways to the body, slightly infront and placed in line with the shoulders.

Third position: one arm is held is first position, then the other in second.

Fourth position: one arm is held in first position, the other in fifth.

As you can see, all the positions correspond to one another in a certain way and have quite a direct placement. The arms will mostly always work together with the same five positions in the feet, especially as you are learning ballet.

I hope this helps you and feel free to contact me anytime. Keep in touch!

Best wishes,

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