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Dance Workout Vocabulary

Battement

French for “beating.”  A beating action of the extended or bent leg.

Coupé

French for “cut.”  The working foot touches supporting foot at the ankle in front or back.

Dégagé

French for “disengaged.”  Stretched leg and pointed foot just off of the floor.

Developpé

A movement in which the leg is first lifted to retiré and then extended to the front, side, or back

First Position (Arms)

Arms held in front in an oval shape, hands held even with the height of the navel.

First Position (Feet)

Toes turned out to the side with heels touching. Turn out happens from the hip.

Fondu (e)

French for “sinking down.”  A lowering of the body made by bending the knee of the supporting leg.

Passé

As a position passé means when a foot is placed on or near the other knee. As a movement passé refers to the working foot passing close to the knee of the standing leg.

Plié

French for “bent” or “bending.”  A bending of the knees.

Port de bras

French for “carriage of the arms.”

Port de corp

French for “carriage of the body.”

Relevé

French for “raised.”  A raising of the body on the balls of the feet.

Rond de Jambe

French for “circle of the leg.” Half circles made by the pointing foot, creating the letter “D” on the floor.

Second Position (arms)

Arms opened wide and in front of the shoulders, slightly curved without dropping elbows.

Second Position (feet)

Standing with feet apart, toes turning out and on the same line as first position.

Tendu

French for “stretched.”  Stretched leg and pointed foot on the floor.