Ballet for Workouts and Fitness

There’s no question ballet dancers are some of the most muscular, toned, athletic individuals out there. Their bodies have the ability to leap high into the air, hold positions that require immense strength and maintain the stamina to repeat these moves gracefully throughout an entire performance. It’s no wonder the likes of everyday people want the secrets to the ballet body. as people yearn to obtain the strength and flexibility of the average ballet dancer.

A ballet workout requires controlled movements. Tightening the muscles in use as well as maintaining proper posture during ballet moves helps tone and strengthen muscles and improve posture and stature. This type of workout is great for individuals who simply want a workout that will help tone what is already there but are tired of the typical weight training workouts. Ballet is also the only workout that will help improve grace and improve fluidity in movements.

The ballet workout is full of basic and classic ballet moves. Strengthen the legs with ballet Plies or bends. Standing in first position, that is, with the heels together and toes pointed out, bend the knees, keeping the back straight and centered over the hips. Squeeze the legs and return to first ballet position. Bending deeper will increase weight resistance and challenge your workout. It is a good idea to balance with the use of a chair or ballet bar for this and other moves. It will provide balance and help maintain proper posture throughout the workout.

Work out the calves with a ballet raise or Releve. Again, standing in ballet first position, keeping stomach muscles tight and the back straight over the hips, roll up onto the balls of the feet in a slow, controlled motion. Return to first position by rolling back down with another slow, controlled motion.

In ballet, the Battement, or beating, requires you stand on one supporting leg with the toe pointed forward. Place the other foot turned out at an angle with the heel touching the toe of the supporting foot. Again, using controlled movements throughout the workout, lift the angled leg, keeping it tight throughout the movement. Return the leg to position and repeat. Try doing this 10 times. When possible, increase repetitions for a harder workout.

Finally, finish the workout with the circling of the leg, known in ballet as the Ronde de Jambe. Standing with the supporting foot point forward, extend the other leg forward with the toes touching the ground. Trace the toes, with leg extended, to the side of the body and around to the back, tracing a half moon circle from start to finish. Complete the ballet move by retracing to the starting position. Be sure to keep the back straight, stomach tightened and leg straight throughout the workout.

Many other ballet moves are ideal for toning muscles and perfecting posture and grace. These four will have you on your way to strong, toned leg muscles in no time. And, not only does the ballet workout provide results such as toned muscles and improved grace and posture, but the workout itself is relaxing – a nice change from an over stimulated gym workout!

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