Every dancer dreams of achieving perfect extensions and beautiful high arabesques. It’s one of the most enchanting and visually stunning moves we can perform on stage - nothing captivates an audience quite like a perfect Arabesque. As dancers, we’re taught to make extremely difficult and physically demanding moves look graceful, fluid and effortless. If you’re looking for some tips on how to achieve a higher arabesque and level up your back flexibility, check out my top 3 tips below. Plus, if you really want results, check out our Higher Arabesque Challenge, available on the Claudia Dean App!
Focus on strengthening your hamstrings, glutes and lower back
A common myth about arabesques is that flexibility through your legs is what will help you achieve height, but in actual fact there are three main areas you need to focus to achieve a higher arabesque; your hamstrings, glutes and lower back. While flexibility is of course important, your body needs strength through these three areas to lift the leg, stabilise your body and hold the leg in place (especially when you’re not performing these exercises at the barre). There are so many exercises on The Claudia Dean App specifically designed to improve strength in these areas like arabesque pulses in the powerband, swan lake lifts and pulses on 4s.
Think about lifting up
In an effort to get your back leg higher, our upper bodies will have a natural habit to push forward, but think about really lifting up instead of forward. I like to visualise an imaginary piece of string lifting up through the crown of my head to help improve the line of my arabesque and to also enhance the curve through your back. The same thought applies to the lifted leg and arm - think about drawing out and up through the toes and fingertips.
Work on flexibility through your hip flexors
If you don’t have enough flexibility through your hip flexors, it will limit your range of movement, which in turn will restrict the height of your arabesque. If you have naturally tight hip flexors, it’s easy to ‘cheat’ the height of your leg by allowing your hips to open, which in turn also allows the leg to lift higher, but your hips should remain as square as possible, which is why working on flexibility through this muscle group is so important. There are a whole host of incredible exercises available on the Claudia Dean App designed to help improve hip flexibility including froggie starfish, turnout mounts and high retiere stretch.
Remember we have plenty more resources available on the Claudia Dean App that will help you take your technique to the next level. So if you’re serious about improving the height of your arabesque, download the app now and access our Higher Arabesque Course.
I can’t wait to see your incredible results!
Love CD xxx