In this essay I will be closely analysing a girl from my dance school.
A particular skill she performs very well is pirouettes. Her preparation before a pirouette is very good, she finds somewhere to spot which enables her to have good control and balance when executing the skill. She also keeps her head up, shoulders back and tenses her abdominals which gives her a strong centre and allows her to keep her turns neat and tight. As well as this, she uses her arms effectively by whipping them around to help her to turn. When turning she keeps her supporting leg straight and her raised foot pointed without letting it sickle which gives a good quality to the turn. When landing a pirouette she places her elevated leg behind her which helps to sustain her balance, this is effective in dance as it is then easy to link it to different skills within a routine. Furthermore, she demonstrates good flexibility when performing; this means she has a wide range of movement around her joints. This is effective within a dance routine as she is able incorporate it into certain skills enabling her to perform skills at a high level. It also creates fluidity and softness in a routine as she can link movements together using her flexibility. She especially has a good range of movement around her hip joint which lets her perform skills such as splits, grand jetés, and arabesques at a high ability. Even though she has certain strengths; she also has weaknesses, just like many sports performers, that let her down. The quality of her jumps is at a very low level and there are many elements within this skill that she needs to improve. Firstly, when preparing for a jump, her plié is not deep enough therefore she does not generate enough power to elevate from the ground meaning her jumps do not obtain enough height and are very low. Furthermore, she does not use her arms when preparing for a jump; this also contributes to her lack of height. When in the air, her toes are not pointed and her posture is very bad; her head is down, her shoulders are forward meaning her centre is also forward. This causes her to be off balance when she lands which has a negative effect in a routine as she is not able to link it to a different skill. It is important for this not to be a weakness because jumps are very common in many dance routines and if she is not able to perform them well it will have a bad impact on the overall performance. Her stamina is also a weakness of hers. She finds it hard to perform at her best for a sustained period of time. This causes her to get tired easy which has a negative impact on her overall performance as the quality of her moves decrease and the routine begins to look messy as well there also being an increased chance of mistakes due to fatigue setting in. With fatigue present, there is a higher chance of injury. Moreover, poor stamina will reduce the effectiveness of a longer duration routine and if performing in a group it would result in letting her fellow dancers down. It is important for a dancer to obtain good stamina so that they can perform to the best of their ability. I have chosen to prioritise her jumps to improve on. I have chosen to focus on this weakness because jumps are very important in a routine and show a lot of skill so if this improves, her overall performance will improve massively.
I will set out three practises for her to help to improve her jumps.
The first practise will be as follows…
I will get her to stand on a bench and repeatedly jump off. This will give her height so it will therefore be easier for her to improve the other elements of the skill e.g. to point her toes, use of arms. I will do this over a period of 3 weeks. Each week I will focus on a different element.
Week 1: This week I will focus on her toes. A common mistake she makes when jumping is sickling her feet. Before carrying out this practise I will ensure she is able to point her toes when on the