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What stretches can I do to gain flexibility to dance?

by admin on February 11, 2010

I used to dance when I was a kid, but quit. I took ballet 1 this year as a PE class at my school, and now I want to dance more. The only problem is that I am extremely inflexible. When I do the splits forward I have to sit on one knee, and sideways I can barely do 90 degrees.

What stretches can I do to help me gain flexibility if I stretch a lot over the summer?

I use to be the same way and I will be stretching a lot this summer too.

I just got this tip in my email box today by a friend:

Lie on your back, with both knees bent and feet on the floor.

* Slowly rotate your low back from side to side (at least 8 times).

* Then gently work your hips through their full range (knees bent)by
pulling them into
your chest then rotating them to the sides (4 times each direction each
leg).

* Stretch the deep bottom muscles in several positions,by bringing one
knee slightly
across your body and pulling the lower part of the leg around
(Piriformis Stretch)

* Then roll over and bring your foot to your bottom to stretch the
front of the thigh.

* Come up onto one knee, in a lunge position to stretch the front of
the hip, making
sure that you dont arch the back, but gently tuck your tail under to
feel the stretch.

* Turn the hips slowly to face one side wall, and then the other,
feeling for points
of restriction.

* Sink lower into the lunge, breathing slowly.

* Come up into standing and stretch the calves, making sure you do a
bent knee calf
stretch as well as the common straight leg one (2 x each).

* Circle your ankles several times in both directions then slowly
massage the sole of
each foot with your knuckles (go gently!).

* Take your legs wide in standing, then bend one knee and take the
hands to the floor
to stretch the inside thigh of one leg. Transfer the weight over to the
other leg to
stretch the second side.

* Sit on the floor with your legs out towards a side split position.
Lean forward
very gently by tilting the pelvis forward and keeping your spine
straight.

* Slowly lean to one side, and lift the opposite arm to stretch out
your side, and
breathe deeply into your lowest ribs, then repeat to the other side (2
x).

* Come back to centre and lean forward again gently (you should be able
to go a little
further).

* Roll back onto your back, knees bent and feet together, and then
lower the knees into
a ‘froggy stretch’.

* Finally, hold behind the back of one knee and gently extend the knee
to stretch the
back of the thigh. It should already feel looser than normal, so just
hold a gentle
stretch, and make sure that your shoulders and arms are relaxed! Spine
straight!

* Finish off with a gentle stretch into the splits to check your range.
Do NOT push
this!!!

Leg Stretches

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