Photo by Erin Baiano

Dear Katie: Why Am I Struggling With Fouettés on Pointe?

In our Dear Katie series, Miami City Ballet soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email for a chance to be featured!

Dear Katie,

I can do fouetté turns forever in flat shoes—but once I put my pointe shoes on, everything falls apart. How can I improve my fouettés on pointe?


Dear Isabella,

Pointe shoes change your body's alignment, because they push you farther over your feet than flat shoes do. When you fouetté on flat, your weight naturally falls closer to the center of your body, making it easier to turn. Once you go up to pointe, you have to compensate for the shift in alignment.

Start by ensuring your weight is completely over your supporting hip. Then, as you come down after each rotation, lift up through your supporting side, which will help keep you from shifting your weight back over to your supporting heel.

Fouettés on pointe also require more foot strength than fouettés on flat—you have to get all the way up on those boxes! Do relevé exercises to strengthen your feet, simulating the motion of a fouetté while holding the barre for support. You'll get there, I promise.

For more of Katie's helpful tips and advice, click here.

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