Demi pointe, the position where ballet dancers rise onto the balls of their feet, is a fundamental element of technique in ballet. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced dancer, enhancing your demi pointe is a continuous journey that requires discipline, strength, and consistency. In this article, we will explore valuable tips and exercises that can help ballet dancers of all levels improve their demi pointe and achieve a nice line of foot and easier balance – quite literally achieving greater heights in their technique!
Strengthen your feet and ankles
Strong feet and ankles are the foundation of a good demi pointe. Incorporate exercises like foot doming, TheraBand exercises, and calf raises into your daily routine to develop strength and stability. Additionally, practising relevés and rises at the barre will help strengthen the muscles necessary for supporting your body weight on demi pointe. Here’s a great online class on developing intrinsic foot strength.
Ensure you have the correct alignment
Maintaining proper alignment is essential for a successful demi pointe. Make sure you have a little more weight on the first and 2nd toes to Create a beautiful aesthetic line and ease of position to balance in. Pay attention to your posture, ensuring that your shoulders are relaxed, your core is engaged, and your hips are aligned over your feet. We don’t want to relax the upper body so much that all the weight is going into the legs. By lifting out of the legs with our core, our legs will get less tired and our body will be working together with our legs. Seek guidance from your ballet teacher or coach to correct any misalignments or imbalances that may hinder your demi pointe technique.
Work on your ankle mobility and flexibility
Flexibility in the ankles plays a significant role in achieving a higher demi pointe. Perform ankle stretches, such as ankle circles and dorsiflexion exercises, to improve mobility and range of motion. Regular stretching and flexibility exercises will help you achieve a more graceful and elongated line when rising onto demi pointe. Try these exercises in our amazing feet course!
Improve your core strength and stability
A strong core is vital for maintaining balance and control during demi pointe work. Incorporate exercises that target your abdominal, glute and back muscles, to improve your stability and control while on demi pointe. You can also join this online class all about developing core strength for ballet, as well as our stronger pointe course, which has loads of helpful tips on how to work with your body to lift out of the legs while strengthening the feet and ankles.
Be mindful of your weight transfer
Transferring your weight smoothly and evenly onto the balls of your feet is crucial for a seamless and controlled demi pointe. Practise rising and lowering from flat to demi pointe with control, focusing on distributing your weight evenly over the metatarsals of your feet. Try not to rock back and forth on your legs but maintain a balanced position whether you are up or down. Gradually increase the repetition of rises to build endurance and improve balance. You can find a helpful class here!
Don’t forget your ankle strengthening exercises
Targeted ankle strengthening exercises can help enhance your demi pointe. Try exercises like towel scrunches, resistance band exercises, and single-leg balances to specifically target the muscles that support your demi pointe technique.
Work on your articulation
Articulation refers to the ability to articulate and control the movement of your feet while on demi pointe, just like hands! Practice exercises that focus on rolling through your feet, articulating each toe from the ball of your foot to the tips, using one toe at a time and extending into a fully pointed position focusing on keeping toes always long and nerves crunched. This will help you achieve a more articulate and polished demi pointe technique.
Train with a qualified ballet coach
Enlist the guidance of a qualified ballet teacher or coach who can provide personalised feedback and corrections. They will be able to assess your technique, identify areas for improvement, and guide you through specific exercises tailored to your needs.
Improving your demi pointe technique requires dedication, patience, and consistent practice. By focusing on strengthening your feet and ankles, maintaining proper alignment, working on ankle mobility, and seeking guidance from professionals, you can take significant strides towards achieving a higher demi pointe. Embrace the journey, enjoy the process, and remember that progress in ballet is a result of continuous effort and a passion for the art form. With determination and perseverance, you can soar to new heights on your demi pointe!
Join us for online ballet classes – All levels welcome!
If you want to improve your demi pointe, get stronger and more flexible, and become the ballet dancer you want to be, then it’s time to join Ballet with Isabella! Online studio classes cover everything you need to get an effective workout – and since these classes are led by the first young woman in Britain to train at Russia’s prestigious Vaganova Ballet Academy, you’ll be getting world-class training right in the comfort of your own home. Take a look at classes for beginners, intermediate, and advanced-level dancers, including this class on how to improve your demi pointe.