In our "Dear Katie" series, former NYCB soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email email@example.com a chance to be featured!
I have terrible turnout. I've heard that younger students can improve their rotation by stretching, but I'm 16 now. Is it too late for me? What can I realistically do to get better turnout?
It's true that you might not be able to improve your natural rotation at this point. But "good" turnout isn't just about having super-limber hips. It's also about having the strength to hold the rotation you do have. You can be the most flexible dancer in the world, but if you don't have the upper leg strength to hold that turnout, it won't do you any good!
Work on strengthening your external hip rotator muscles, which are critical to turnout. I'd highly recommend Pilates classes, because several Pilates exercises strengthen that muscle group. But here's an exercise you can do at home:
Lie on your side with your legs together, knees bent at a 90-degree angle.
Lift your feet and shins a few inches off the floor, keeping your legs together.
Open and close your top leg while keeping your heels glued together, like a clamshell. Do 20–30 open-and-close reps on each side.
Trust me—you'll feel it! And it'll really help you hold every bit of natural rotation in your legs.
For more of Katie's helpful tips and advice, click here.
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)
Dance Spirit's 2019 Cover Model Search finalists: Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland! One of them will win a spot on Dance Spirit's Fall 2019 cover. Learn more about the dancers by clicking on their names here:
vote for your favorite below. You can vote once a day now through July 15.
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Madison Jordan and Jarrod Tyler Paulson brought their real-life romance to the audition stage. (Adam Rose/FOX)
It's usually right around the third or fourth week of "So You Think You Can Dance" audition rounds that we start itching for the live shows. Sure, the auditions are fun, inspiring, and entertaining, but at a certain point, we reach audition saturation. (And the live shows are just so good and feature so much more Cat Deeley.)
All that said, Nigel and co. kept things spicy this week, so our attention remained firmly glued to the screen. (It's been 16 seasons—who are we to doubt Nigel Lythgoe, sir?) Here's how it all went down.