Add Power and Athleticism... From the Gym to the Stage.
Jumper? Turner? Can you be both?
Dancers will often describe themselves by the attributes they have or their abilities such as; turning, jumping, adagio, allegro-based Dancers.
Dancers that come into the gym often possess the ability to jump well or balance and control their limbs. We rarely see someone who presents all of these attributes. The good news is that the qualities each person desires can be developed.
Performing isometric holds can aid an individual in gaining the static strength required to balance and perform adage based steps.
Similarly, performing weighted athletic movements like squats and weighted jumps can improve the body's efficiency to express force and get into the air.
We are often a product of what we spend our time doing. Therefore, Dancers who have spent most of their time practising turns at a young age will naturally, providing the practise is maintained, be able to perform turns consistently as a developing Dancer. However, performing proprioceptive drills and anti rotational exercises in particular will aid a Dancer in developing security when turning.
On the same note, Dancers who have enjoyed time jumping and performing Dance disciplines that have placed a large demand on the knee extensors and have been trained to jump from a young age will have a seemingly "natural" jump.
Well... there is news... Jumping ability can be easily developed.
In previous articles we touched on the importance of landing safely but enhancing leaps and jumps is high on a Dancer's list of things to have locked down.
So here are a few methods we employ to develop Power and Speed beyond the usual methods of strength training and Jumping... Some of these methods are advanced and should be progressed under the correct supervision.
Advanced Hop and Land Sequence
Bulgarian Split Squat with 8 count isometric hold
Over Speed Jumps (Band Assisted)
Single Leg Hop and Stick