6 Best Stretches for Flexibility for Dancers

Stretching is an important component of dancing. (Image via Pexels/Pixabay)
Stretching is an important component of dancing. (Image via Pexels/Pixabay)

Dancing requires a great deal of flexibility. Depending on the age of the dancer, it can take up to six months or a year of consistent practice to achieve dance flexibility. This might be aggravating for dancers who anticipate immediate results.

Stretching is an important component of dance. Stretching may physically and emotionally prepare you for this or any form of exercise. Stretching impacts flexibility and overall performance as a dancer, whether you're performing or just practicing.

Best stretches to dance swiftly

Stretching is an important part of dancing because it increases flexibility, reduces muscle soreness, and lowers the risk of injury.

Here are some stretches and exercises for young dancers to increase their flexibility.

#1 Standing hamstring stretch

The neck, back, glutes, hamstrings, and calf muscles will all benefit from this stretch. Here are the steps to do this stretch properly:

  • Standing tall with your feet hip-width apart is a good place to start. Slightly bend your knees and lay your arms by your sides.
  • Exhale as you lower your head to the floor by bending forward from the hips. As you stretch, try to keep your head, shoulders, and neck as relaxed as possible.
  • Wrap your arms over the backs of your legs and keep them there. Hold the stretch for 10 seconds to three minutes.
  • Bend your knees and roll back up to a standing posture once you've finished holding your stretch.

#2 Piriformis stretch

The piriformis muscle is a deep internal hip rotator. Its main function is external rotation. Follow these steps to do the piriformis stretch correctly:

  • Sit with both legs out in front of you on the floor.
  • Place your right foot firmly on the floor and cross your right leg over your left.
  • Place your right hand behind your back on the floor.
  • As you rotate your body to the right, place your left hand on your right quad or your left elbow on your right knee and press your right leg to the left.

#3 Lunge with spinal twist

This stretch is one of the best stretches for dancers as it aids in hip opening and thoracic (mid-back) mobility. Follow these steps to do the proper lunge with a spinal twist:

  • Begin by standing with your feet pressed together.
  • To get into a staggered stance, take a strong step forward with your left foot.
  • Bend your left knee and lunge, keeping your right leg straight behind you and your toes on the ground to feel a stretch in front of your right thigh.
  • Place your right hand on the floor and extend your left arm towards the ceiling while twisting your upper body to the left.
  • Hold the position for 30 seconds to two minutes.
  • Repeat on the opposite side.

#4 Frog stretch

This stretch targets tight regions in the hips and groin and is particularly beneficial for dancers. Below are the steps to follow for a perfect frog stretch:

  • Begin by being positioned on all fours.
  • Your knees should be wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Turn your toes outward and place your inner foot flat on the floor.
  • Return your hips to their original position, which is toward your heels.
  • If possible, move from your hands to your forearms to attain a deeper stretch.
  • Hold the position for 30 seconds to two minutes.

#5 Side bend

The groin, hips, and inner thighs are kept flexible with this simple exercise, which makes it the best for dancers. Follow these steps to complete the side bend perfectly:

  • Kneel with your legs together, back straight, and core tight on the floor.
  • Outstretch your left leg to the side. Maintain a perpendicular relationship with your body (not in front or behind you).
  • Extend your right arm aloft, place your left arm on your left thigh, and bend your torso and right arm gently to the left.
  • Maintain a forward-facing posture with your hips.
  • For 30 seconds to two minutes, hold the position.
  • Repeat on the opposite side.

#6 90/90 stretch

This stretch is wonderful for dancers since it targets both hips at the same time. Here are the steps to do this stretch properly:

  • Sit with your right knee bent out in front of you at a 90-degree angle. Maintain a flexed foot with your sole facing the left.
  • Place your left knee to the left of your body and let your leg rest flat on the floor. Bend your knee so that your foot is facing backwards. Make sure this foot is flexed as well.
  • Keep your right glute on the floor as much as possible, and move your left glute as close to the floor as feasible.
  • Hold the stretch for a few seconds before switching sides.

Bottom line

No one has ever become flexible on the spur of the moment.

Stretching should be a part of your everyday regimen if you want to increase your dancer flexibility. Just stay at it, and you'll notice a difference in no time.

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Edited by Jodi Whisenhunt


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