Circuit Training Exercises to Add to Your Ballet Training

Ballet dancers find different ways to augment their training. It can range from their nutrition to an assortment of physical exercises geared at either getting a good stretch, conditioning a muscle, or simply getting in extra cardio. Exploring a variety of exercise programs in conjunction with dancing can help you become a better dancer, and keep you in optimal shape. Cross-training has the benefit that it does not allow muscles to over-develop so that the body is getting an even workout, while also focusing on smaller details. A fun addition to cross-training is circuit training. These types of workout routines involve a variety of high-intensity interval training, or HIIT, which boosts your heart rate and challenges your physical abilities through short, circuited movements. In these types of exercises, you can also fuse some dance, acrobatics, and gymnastics into the circuit which can surprisingly build an amount of strength in forms that are exploratory and playful. Looking to vary your fitness regime? BFW shares some circuit training that may be right for you.

Cardio Kickboxing Routine

Cardio kickboxing routines blend together punches and kicks into cardio-heavy workouts, so get your favorite pumped-up music ready. Between your favorite beats and the punch/ kick combinations that are adaptable to all levels of coordination, cardio kickboxing feels more like a dance party than an afternoon at the gym. The American Health Association says that cardio kickboxing not only boosts strength but flexibility, too. To incorporate some kickboxing techniques into your circuit, try a basic combination: squat, right arm punch, left arm punch. When you’re ready for some variety, switch out the punches for hooks or undercuts.

Single-Leg Squat Balances

Test your balance by floating out into an airplane position from your squats. This yoga balancing maneuver, balletic in its form, will bring some easiness to your body and a flight to your step. From a single leg squat, bring a bend to your extended knee and sweep the lifted leg back behind you with your toes flexed toward the ground and your arms reaching beyond your ears — an airplane position. Hold the position to engage your core stability or move from your airplane through to your single-leg squat on the other side.

Rainbow Jumps

Strengthen your core in a more amusing way with rainbow jumps. Starting from a downward dog position, rainbow jumps involve jumping your feet forward to meet your hands and backward to land with elbows close to your ribs in a low pushup position. An acrobatic strength training movement, rainbow jumps are like finding your inner kid. As your core and triceps strengthen, you will be able to gain height on your jumps forward and backward.

Handstand Kicks

We have been seeing a lot of these in workouts today. Now it’s time to take your body upside down. Handstands are a fun way to strengthen the arms and experience a levitation of the legs. By developing the scapula muscles, general arm and core strength and balance, handstand kicks will get the heart pumping and the blood moving back toward the heart, which will leave you energized for your next circuit. From shortened downward dog, lift your right heel skyward and bend into your left knee to explode through your left foot as you kick up. Start with sets of five kicks for each leg and see if you can suspend your airtime with each kick.