Stretching is so important before classes or exercise as well as afterwards.
Stretching prepares our body. It warms up our muscles for training and after the workout, it helps to cool them down, and to relax and lengthen.
In ballet we use our entire body and in a way that can be very intense, therefore making the time to stretch, especially after classes will decrease the chance of DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) which can last for a few days after the class/rehearsals.
The back is made up of some of the biggest muscles in our body and is used in everything we do in ballet, from holding our arms in the correct positions to helping to stabilise our core muscles which in turn affect our ability to balance, turn and jump. So it is because of this that we have to take the time to really take care of our back and upper body just as much as our lower body.
Here are some basic and useful stretches that will feel great whether you are a dancer or not! Have a go...