Arch in back

Thank you so much for all the information you provide on your web site and in Tune Up Your Turnout! Since I have a sway back, it was a nice surprise to buy a book about turnout and also get so much help with alignment.

After stretching the hip flexors (it’s like a miracle!) I can now lay on the floor with both legs straight and much less arch in my back, but only if my shoulders are forward (my whole spine is on the ground but the sides of my shoulders are up off the ground a little bit). If I press the shoulders down to the ground, the huge arch comes back. Is that a problem, and is there anything I can do to improve?

I know it’s going to take a while to get my alignment figured out, since the sway back has been there for years and I’ve only been doing ballet for a few months. I just want to make sure I’m doing the best I can and not putting any strain on the wrong muscles.


Sounds like you might have a problem with your lat muscles or the muscles on the front of the chest, the pecs.  Either of those will draw your shoulders forward in the way you described.









Try this…. lie down on the floor as you described and get a sense of how much your back arches when you press the shoulders down. Then go a doorway and stand in the doorway with your right arm bent at a right angle and placed against the door frame. (Your hand to your elbow will be on the wall or door frame) Gently press your arm against the wall while you turn towards the left slowly. You’ll feel a stretch in the front of the chest on the right side. Do the same with the other arm.

recheck your alignment on the floor

Then go back to the doorway and this time you are going create a C curve to stretch the lats. Place your both hands on the edge of the doorframe, and then bow your body away from the door in a C shape. You’ll feel the stretch along the upper outside of the arm, going down the side of your body. Do both sides. (you’ll need to be on the other side of the door for the other side)

recheck your alignment on the floor

What did you learn? Did it increase your ability to lie on your back and have your shoulders less rounded forward while keeping your back in good alignment?

For many it will.

Happy stretching!!


PS:  If you are interested in the Science of Dance Training Summer conference please let me know by March 24th.  Thank you!

“Education is the key to injury prevention”

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