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Ballet - General
A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP (karma: 8)  en>fr fr>en
By ballerinagirl66 Comments: 411, member since Sat Oct 06, 2007
On Tue May 27, 2008 06:20 AM
Made sticky by Theresa (28613) on 2008-06-10 09:59:53
Made unsticky by Odessa (22571) on 2008-08-02 19:06:54

I recently recieved a PM from someone asking how they can improve thier leg extensions, and I was inspired to share what I told her with everyone on the ballet board.

Many of us want to get our legs high in our extensions to the front, side and back, and often wonder what exercises can be used to gain the strength and muscles that it takes to hold that leg up high. From my experience, the best way to get your leg up there is simply by PRACTICING! What I mean is, posse develope(extend) your leg to the front/side/back(whichever you'd like to work on) up as high as you can and practice HOLDING it there for as long as you can. Don't be suprised if you can't hold it very long at first-the more you practice the easier it will become. Try to do this exercise for 10 minutes 3-6 times a week. Remeber, it takes time and effort to build the muscles you need to hold your leg up high, so don't get frustrated if you don't see results right away.

Also, just one more tip, make sure that when you do your extensions that your leg is correct in technique. For example, make sure that ypur supporting leg is turned out and that your hips are tucked under etc.

I hope this post was helpful to those out there struggling with getting thier leg high on thier extensions. Feel free to add any tips that I haven't mentioned.

Doing this exercise has definitly been beneficial to me, my leg muscles are now stronger and more defined, and strong leg muscles are a key component for all ballet and pointe dancers.

41 Replies to A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP

re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By luvs_dancing Comments: 141, member since Mon Feb 25, 2008
On Tue May 27, 2008 09:48 AM
Thanks for posting this! I have been practicing by pointing and flexing my feet as I move my leg up as high as i can and then I just hold it until I can't anymore. I've noticed that my legs are getting stronger and that I am improving my extension and developpes :)
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By Fayetmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 2836, member since Fri Jun 09, 2006
On Tue May 27, 2008 11:30 AM
Thanks for posting this! I really need to work on my side extensions (which, honstely, suck right now) and this is good advice. I will start, like.. tomorrow. ;p

Nay, thanks for sharing!
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By Dancenstuff Comments: 949, member since Thu Sep 27, 2007
On Tue May 27, 2008 03:32 PM
thanks, this is something i'm going to work on.
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By UntoldLies Comments: 530, member since Fri Oct 12, 2007
On Tue May 27, 2008 03:41 PM
I got that PM too, a little odd.... I dont know or have even chated with the person before.
I pretty much replied with the same response.
Thanks for posting it for all to see though!
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP (karma: 1)  en>fr fr>en
By angeldancer92 Comments: 342, member since Sat Nov 25, 2006
On Tue May 27, 2008 04:16 PM
just to add on to this forum
there is an excersise you can do to help loosen up the pelvic muscles which will release the tension so you can get your leg high in devloppes and grande battements.

you lie with your back on the floor, your legs hip width apart and bend the knees with your feet flat on the floor. now lift up your pelvis until your lower back if off the floor and rotate in slowly firts to the left until your left hip is on the floor and then arch your lower back so your sit bones are on the floor and then keep rotating until your right hip is on the floor and then back to imprinting the start of your lower back, do this five times. it helps to think of a clock with your left hip being quarteer pst, your sit bones being half past and your right hip being quarter to, IE it takes afull minute to get around this circle. then get up and try a devloppe.
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By PRETTYinPINK1232 Comments: 477, member since Tue Feb 27, 2007
On Tue May 27, 2008 07:06 PM
This is good advice.

The only way to improve your extensions is to practice, there is no easier way. What I do is, when im watching TV, I just get up off my butt and start practicing my extensions. Do this everyday when your watching your favorite show, and you will definately see a difference.
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By foreverdance0member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 290, member since Wed May 07, 2008
On Thu May 29, 2008 08:42 AM
I'm glad you posted this, thanks. It's a really good idea and I'll try it :D
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By iDance4Jesus129member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 237, member since Fri Mar 31, 2006
On Thu May 29, 2008 11:13 AM
Thanks for posting this. It's good advice, and I'll certainly give it a try!
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By kathrinasong Comments: 37, member since Tue Jun 03, 2008
On Sun Jun 08, 2008 01:21 AM
thank you so much for this post. my leg extensions have improved...
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By Dancer_Male Comments: 28, member since Thu Jun 05, 2008
On Mon Jun 09, 2008 03:45 PM
Thanks for the suggestions, and well for sharing what has worked well for you.
I mostly just need to work on motivation to practice daily :)
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By dancinislife0607member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1422, member since Sun Apr 16, 2006
On Mon Jun 09, 2008 08:07 PM
ohmygosh thank you STICKY!!!
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By balletbabe4eva Comments: 1169, member since Fri May 11, 2007
On Mon Jun 09, 2008 10:35 PM
I really want to try the exercise angeldancer92 posted but uhm I dont get it could someone please try to explain it to me lol I feel dumb but I just really want to know I need to improve my exstension
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By angeldancer92 Comments: 342, member since Sat Nov 25, 2006
On Wed Jun 11, 2008 03:47 AM
its okay my contermpory teacher spent ages trying to teach us this excersise. :P

so your lying on the floor with your knees bent to the ceiling
suck in your stomach muscles and lift your pelvis of the floor.

Now rotate your pelvis in a kind of slow hip circle clockwise so that one hip is so the ceiling and the other pressed into the floor, that will take 15 seconds

now arching your back and pelvis till you are right up on your sit bones lying down as you continue rotaing your hips in a circle will take another 15 secconds.

Now rotate from on your sit bones to your other hip so the other one is up to the ceiling for 15 secconds

and then rotate from on one hip back to lifting your pelvis off the floor and pressing the start of your lower back into the floor.

is that more understandable??
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By dreamofdancing Comments: 540, member since Fri Feb 22, 2008
On Wed Jun 11, 2008 06:50 AM
wow, good post!!! this is something I definitely need to work on

another thing about streching- it is good to have someone else stretch you (i.e. teacher, friend who knows how to stretch you, parent if their willing to learn how to do it correctly). that way, you can just relax and focus on releasing your muscles and not be tense. this has helped me a lot to gain more flexibility.
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By Dancingmummy Comments: 353, member since Mon Jun 09, 2008
On Wed Jun 11, 2008 12:27 PM
I have a question about this. My thigh muscles are already a bit bulky from cheerleading. How can i work on improving my extension without adding to that bulk?
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By angeldancer92 Comments: 342, member since Sat Nov 25, 2006
On Wed Jun 11, 2008 03:47 PM
Really turn out your legs as you do decvloppes, and stretch your foot away from you while keeping your hips square, and though its physically impossible try to imagine that you are lifting your leg from the underneath muscles.
and stretch stretch stretch i used to have bulky thigh muscles too.
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By adore_dancemember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 523, member since Mon Apr 07, 2008
On Sun Jun 15, 2008 04:41 AM
^ I too have bulkyish thighs.. thats is really good advaice ill remember that.

Thank you so much for this post!

I was actually doing to make a post asking how to improve extensions, and then I saw the sticky!
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By chiyo Comments: 77, member since Wed Feb 01, 2006
On Mon Jun 23, 2008 10:25 AM
wow~
i was about to post a threat on how to get my leg higher. I mean, I can do a 90 degree arabasque, but I sickly want to get my leg higher. I know it's very difficult given that I'm not very flexible.
And this sticky gives me some ideas!! I will try! Thank you very much!!!
=)
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By Armwarmermember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 3105, member since Fri May 20, 2005
On Mon Jun 23, 2008 01:31 PM
Very helpful encouragement here! It's definitely inspiring, because right now I know that I should be working on my extensions...and this isn't an AWFUL lot of work or a change in my schedule. I think I might just practice.

Thanks!

Ash
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By XxXballetXxX Comments: 29, member since Sun Jun 08, 2008
On Tue Jun 24, 2008 10:38 PM
hey thanks for this, I was just wondering how to maintain your turnout (in your extended leg)? Im starting to get really fustrated because i can do this on one leg but not the other:@
thanks for the post again:)

Comment #7315077 deleted
Removed by Theresa (28613) on 2008-07-05 23:13:19 double post

re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By ballet_13ellie Comments: 22, member since Wed Jun 25, 2008
On Wed Jun 25, 2008 11:35 AM
Thanks for posting this! I will definatley practise this a lot!
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By ballerina_hottie Comments: 130, member since Thu Jun 26, 2008
On Sat Jul 05, 2008 04:50 PM
thanks for posting this I believe lots of dancers love this sort of advice
re: A Guide On Leg Extension/Developpes -Getting Your Leg UP en>fr fr>en
By allegrolover13 Comments: 64, member since Tue Jul 01, 2008
On Sat Jul 05, 2008 08:45 PM
Edited by allegrolover13 (198482) on 2008-07-05 20:45:49 spelling >
Thank you ballerinagirl66 for starting this thread, and angeldancer92 for adding! I definitely could use work on getting height in extensions and this helps a lot. Karma to you both as soon as I'm a full member. =]
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