You may be thinking, what in the world is a barrel turn and how does it relate to dance at all. Well I am here to clear it all up for you. A barrel turn is a jump in dance. Some may even say you do make a barrel shape with your body. Let’s start with the basics.
Standing Barrel Turn
Step 1: You will begin with your feet shoulder width apart and hands by your side. You will then step your dominate foot to the opposite diagonal shifting your weight onto the front foot. Both of your arms will swing to the diagonal your feet goes (yes both arms, sounds silly just go with it).
Step 2: You will throw your body into the shape of a C while turning in a circle under yourself. While you are turning both of your arms will swing behind you. Throwing your head backwards while putting this all together will give it the ultimate affect, maybe just don’t close your eyes to avoid sickness.
Things to remember while doing this:
- You are going straight up and down under yourself
- Your arms give you majority of your momentum
- Throwing your head back doesn’t throw you off (it looks really good)
- You want your feet and head to be as close as possible when turning in the air
- Pointe your toes
Once you have mastered the standing barrel turn you can add a couple more steps and make it a turning barrel turn. With a turning barrel turn it is the exact same movements just getting a running start and instead of landing on your feet you land rolling up off of the ground. Once you are in the air as you land you would just tuck your left leg under and roll right through it until you are standing once again.
Either one is just as impressive and actually surprisingly simple once you get the hang of the concept. Tune in next week for more dance moves!