Dance Tip Tuesday: Turnout

Every dancer wants the perfect turnout, that 180 degrees first position. When working on your turnout it is important to remember that turnout comes from your hips not your knees and if you feel pressure in your knees don’t push any further. To check your true turnout and keep track of your progress you want to start with your feet parallel, lift your toes up, rotate from your hips and bring your feet to first position. You should not have to force anything or move your heels. This is your natural turnout and it will improve as you work on your turnout. Here are some exercises to improve your turnout.

Center Splits with Gaynor Minden Flexibility Band

We love these flexibility bands. They are great for so many different exercises. One of out favorites is to use it to help stretch your center split. We like to start in a butterfly stretch and wrap one end of the band around one foot then bring it around your back and loop it around the other foot. Then slowly and carefully start to open up into your center split. Hold this stretch for a few minutes trying to open your hips up more and more.


You can purchase your own Gaynor Minden Flexibility Band here: 


Assisted Butterfly Stretch

This exercise requires a partner. Start with your legs in a butterfly lying on your back. Have your partner put gentle pressure on your knees as you try to extend into first position. While doing this stretch you want to go slow, keep your legs even and make sure you keep both hips on the ground.

Hip Strengthening Exercise

This strengthening exercise will get your hips strong enough to use your great turnout in extensions. You will need a resistance band for this exercise. You want to start by sitting on the ground with your knees bent. Tie your resistance band around the top of your knees fairly tight. Lay on your side keeping your knees bent, you can either press up on your elbow or lay with your arm under your head. You want to separate your knees and bringing them back together. Try to avoid wiggling around and rolling off your hips.


You can purchase a resistance band on our website. Just click the link!! 


Better turnout won’t happen over night!!! Keep working hard and your turnout will improve!! Make sure you are doing both stretches and strengthening exercises. It doesn’t matter how flexible you are if you don’t have the strength to use it!!!

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