Hi everyone! Today we are starting “Conditioning Month” here at Goulet Ballet. You will find some other interesting posts in between, but the main focus will be on conditioning and your training outside of class. To begin with, we will look at some of my favorite Thera-band exercises. These are designed to help improve pointework and strengthen the ankles. I will also show you one non-Thera-band exercise to strengthen your balances using a BOSU ball. I hope you find it helpful.
Thera-band exercises video:
How do these exercises work?
When you work against the resistance of the Thera-band, the pushing action of the foot contracts the muscle fibers in the calf muscle and in the ankle more than they would be engaged without resistance. This makes it more difficult for the foot to reach its full range of motion, and it takes more effort, therefore strengthening the intrinsic foot muscles.
Doing different types of exercises with the band strengthens different parts of the foot and calf muscles. The winging exercise done in the video helps to strengthen the outer calf, which allows for a greater extension of the line of the body from the side, especially in positions such as arabesque.
Using a BOSU ball for foot strengthening
A BOSU ball is a stabilization workout tool that can help strengthen the feet during balances.
When placed upside down, with the bouncy side down, you can balance in various positions on the flat, top section. This helps with stabilization and strengthening of the ankle.
Most gyms have BOSU balls available for use, physical therapy clinics also usually have them for exercises, and you might even be able to find one in the physical therapy room or Pilates studio at your ballet school or studio, especially if it is attached to a professional company. Otherwise, you can buy them online here to use at home.
Thanks for reading today’s post and watching the video! See you on Friday.