Terminology Tuesdays! Relevé

Today's terminology is

💃 Relevé

💃Pronounce: re-luh-vay

💃Translation: Raised

When we set a relevé exercise, we are referring to a series of rises onto the toes. A relevé will always be performed to a demi pointe (i.e standing on your tippy toes) until the day you dare to strap on a pair of pointe shoes - which then the ballerina can relevé right up onto the tops of the toes.

But for now, we practice our relevé’s at the barre and in the centre of the room to build a lot of strength in a our feet, calves, and thighs. This will be particularly important when we want to find the strength to master jumps and turns. If you are finding rising on one foot difficult, be kind and patient with yourself. it’s a very specific strength on the ankle, which unless you have really high cupboards to get to, when do you get the opportunity to practice this movement of the foot? (nb wearing heels unfortunately don’t count towards strengthening our ankles as most of us tend to sit down in our heels and get supported by such devices - if support and heels can even be put in the same sentence together!??) Anyway I bitterly digress. If you are struggling to rise on one foot you can:

  • choose to keep rising one two feet until you feel more confident / stronger

  • or grip your hands around that barre and let it help and support you (for now! eventually we only to have our fingers resting lightly on the barre as we perform each and every exercise).

💃Important to note: What an amazing feeling buying your first pair of pointe shoes is! However, it does take quite some time to prepare for full relevé’s en pointe. First we work to acquire an incredible amount of strength in the feet, ankles, calves and core before taking particular care and precision to master pointe work. But we will get there together one day if this is something you dream to do!?