Pirouettes can be one of the most challenging parts of dance! There are a million different things to think about when executing a pirouette. You think you’ve got it right and then guess what…your dance teacher gives you yet another correction! The number of things to correct is endless, and any one of them could be the reason your turns are failing. I’ve been lucky enough to see some expert pirouette teacher’s in action and here are my Top 5 tips to perfect your pirouettes…
PUSH AND PULL
When turning think about a string pulling you up from the top of your bun but also feel the floor under the ball of your foot. If you feel as though your are going to fall out of your turn instead of letting it happen think about that pull up from your bun.
Check that your ribs are in, pelvis is under and hips are aligned. When reading ‘Pirouette Surgery’ by Rosina Andrews she said to pretend like there is tape from the bottom of your ribs to your hip bones and then crinkle the tape - this works EVERY time with my students. Your back should be flat, so make sure your hips are under so there is no tooshie sticking out. Check that there is a horizontal line from hip to hip, it shouldn’t run on a diagonal - if it does your hip is probably hiked.
Make sure you are turning on a high demi point and pulling up your knee so your supporting leg is strong and straight.
When we are working on turns in class I am always walking around pushing on my students arms, they know that their arms should be held strong enough that they won’t move. Arms should held in a rounded 1st position, inline with the sternum and the locked on.
Potentially the hardest part of teaching turns. It's tricky and takes some SERIOUS patience. One little spotting tip is that I tell my students is to pretend that there is someone holding their face to the front that little bit longer than they want it to be there. We practice this in class and make sure that while doing this we tilt our heads off alignment.
Check and try these five tips next time you’re practicing your turns at home and let us know in the comments how it went…
Miss Dani x