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  1. #11
    Senior Member Ranya's Avatar
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    Hey Eshta,

    even if you do not have any ballet experience the barre au sol is a good idea. Of course, you will not be able to do some of the exercises but there is a whole bunch of easy-going ones!!
    The best thing is that you do not need a barre for the "barre au sol".
    As for doing more harm than good, it is important that you first ask someone who
    knows "barre au sol" (maybe one of your students has had previous ballet training???) in order to correct you and avoid harming yourself. But all in all there should be no issues, unless you have medical problemes with your joints (which I suppose you don't).

    You will start to see the effects after about 4 to 6 weeks (I mean REAL results - if you do the exercises properly).

  2. #12
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    Flexibility increases in gradual increments for most students as they learn to dance, and I haven't found that belly dance requires the same kind of flexibility in belly dance as does ballet. Please note: that is not to say belly dance does not require flexibility, but despite some evidence to the contrary on YouTube, one does not need to be able to do the splits or dramatic backbends in which one's head touches the floor in order to belly dance.

    In my classroom, I have a barre, but don't use it a great deal for student stretches. Most of my students have little or no dance training before they come to me, and if I start barre training in addition to belly dance- oh, lah! I prefer ground and floor stretches for my students, though I think a barre routine might be an excellent addition for students with more dance experience than mine have.

  3. #13
    V.I.P. shiradotnet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shanazel View Post
    In my classroom, I have a barre, but don't use it a great deal for student stretches. Most of my students have little or no dance training before they come to me, and if I start barre training in addition to belly dance- oh, lah! I prefer ground and floor stretches for my students, though I think a barre routine might be an excellent addition for students with more dance experience than mine have.
    I use the barre for 2 things:

    1. Teaching the use of the core muscles (as opposed to pushing with the foot/leg) to produce hip lifts and drops. I have them rest a hand on the barre just for balance, stand on just one foot, and then do up-down-up-down with the hip on the unweighted side. This teaches them to use abs, obliques, and back muscles to power the move rather than using impetus from the leg. The role of the barre is solely to help them keep their balance while standing on one leg.

    2. Doing standing lunges for psoas flexibility. As mentioned in my earlier message, this is primarily to help those students with swayback as their default posture overcome one of the causes of swayback, tight psoas. Swayback can lead to back pain, especially when we belly dancers start swinging our hips in all directions. But even non-swayback students can benefit from these stretches, as the psoas gets a bit of stretching when you do a standing backbend.

  4. #14
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    I use the barre for the first of your two items, but not the second. The second is a good idea, though I don't teach anything but an American Cabaret cheater backbend.

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