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kayellay

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Reply with quote  #1 
My 13yo daughter has been dancing competitively for almost 3 years and needs improvement on several things.   She believes that an item called a "turn board" available online, will help her with her turns.   My argument is that she needs to practice more since a turn board cannot help onstage.   Her argument is that this can help with spotting and balance, which are her weaknesses while turning.    Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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LJK2dance

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Reply with quote  #2 
You will probably get a lot of different replies to this question as I have heard from other sources that these turning boards are either great or a waste of time.  I got my DD's one for Christmas and they really liked it.  They found it to be fun and somewhat challenging.  I will say that both improved their turns while using the spotting board just from messing around with it, I really can't say there was any dramatic difference in their regular turns as a direct result.  This year they started with a new studio with a HEAVY focus on ballet.  As part of the curriculum they do a lot of core conditioning and work specifically on turns during an Integrated Technique class.  So, perhaps the board helped a little bit, but I would say regular class attendance and improved core strength likely were the main contributors to their improvement in turns this year.  I would, however, not hesitate to recommend the boards as they did find them to be fun to use!
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Charlie

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Reply with quote  #3 
I just got my daughter the Dancing Divas Turning Board for her Birthday and she loves it! The board is made with Marley, so it's the same flooring her studio and most competitions use.  It was expensive, I paid about $110 for it but fortunately, there is a company that carries them locally so I was able to save on the shipping cost.
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destine2dance

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Reply with quote  #4 
I bought my daughter one of those cheap hard plastic mats that you put under your office chairs so they can roll on the carpet.  I works very well for helping her with her turns (with socks) and it doesn't cost as much as one of those turning boards.  Just a suggestion
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MinnDanceMom

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Reply with quote  #5 
I am assuming the op is referring to the "turn board" and not the dancing divas turning board. The turn board is a contraption about the size of a shoe that is used to work on certain aspects of turn technique. The dancing divas turning board is a small piece of marley flooring to practice turning on.

I am familiar with both.

I have never heard anything bad about the turn board. I know of several ballet teachers who have said they do have a useful purpose if used correctly. I don't personally know of anyone whose turns improved using one, but I am sure there are some people on this forum who have a dancer who improved with it.

I don't know much about the dancing divas turning board, but I suppose if you don't have the flooring necessary to work on turns it can be helpful.
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Angel2228

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Reply with quote  #6 
My DD got one this year, her turns have GREATLY improved. I don't necessarily think it was specifically because of the board. The novelty of having one got her to practice more. They also focused huge on ballet this year and conditioning, and most of the girls cores are stronger and their whole studios turns have improved. After watching our home town competition last month, we are definitely 'the turning studio' here.
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tendumom

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Reply with quote  #7 
If balance is an issue, she needs to work on strengthening and using her core muscles. Pilates might bring more results than a board. 
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kayellay

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Reply with quote  #8 
Thanks for all the replies so far!   My OP is referring to a little curved board that allows the user to pirouette easier in order to focus on spotting, balance and posture.   It is available at Discount Dance Supply online store for about $32. 
I guess I just want to know if this is something that is really going to help her with spotting and keeping center...
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JulieDB

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Reply with quote  #9 
I got my daughter a turning board.  She wound up being frightened of it.  It makes you spin very fast and if you don't have good balance, you'll lose control.  It even says not to use it alone.  You need a spotter.

One thing that her old studio used was pool noodles.  Cut about a 2 foot piece from one and have her put it against her back.  Hold it in place with an elastic belt or she can shove it down her pants.  Assuming the pants have an elastic waist.  This will force her to keep her balance, keep her back straight and hopefully lift herself upwards.
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twinmommytx

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Reply with quote  #10 
Our studio owner and DTs are against the turning board you're describing because they said it doesn't teach the kids to have their feet in the proper position and creates bad habits.  They are okay with the Spin Spot, which is a circular disk that sits on ball bearings and they can turn on.  They like that better because they can turn in releve.  However, my DD has that and never uses it.  It's really hard to use and she has little incentive to get on it.  She would rather just work on her turns on the floor.
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purplerain

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Reply with quote  #11 
My dds dance teachers all have said turns boards are a waste of money
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DMSO

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Reply with quote  #12 
We have a turn board at the studio for supplemental training. We've had several dancers with ankle injuries who were restricted by doctors from using and maintaining a releve during recovery. The TB allowed the dancers to work on spotting and core while recuperating. I would not allow a dancer to solely rely on a TB for training.
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highlandmom

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Reply with quote  #13 
I have never see this or ever heard of it.  I am not sure if I think it is a good idea, DD15 is known as the turner of our studio she has no issue on either side.  I will say however that she worked for these turns, starting out slowly and working up on both sides.  It is a lot about position and core strength, I really would like to know how these will improve the core strength area.
I also agree with twinmommytx in that I think it could create bad habits because of the foot position.
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Cookmomx3

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Reply with quote  #14 
Our SO doesn't think the turn boards you are speaking of do any help. Her reasoning - you place your whole foot on the board, thus not being up in releve. So if you are turning on a flat foot or your heel. Then fine. She said the only way to become a "better turner" is strengthened core, and practice practice practice. That being said - we DO own one. They are inexpensive as my girls wanted one. They got it for Christmas and used it several times. Now it just floats around the house, and my DS likes to joke around with it more than anything. I also caught him and my dd7, using it as a bat with a balled up pair of tights! So it obviously was a good purchase with so many uses....... Haha!
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heartmom

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Reply with quote  #15 
I had looked at getting one because I have a DD obsessed with turning, but in the end I didn't because I just couldn't get past the fact that turning while not in releve seems useless. To me, the releve is the key to turning. If your DD is struggling, I would echo everyone here who said to work on her core muscles. In addition, she should work on just going into releve and holding it. My oldest DD, who is a natural turner, still does this. A teacher told her she needed to be able to hold a releve for one second for every rotation she wanted to be able to do, so she still routinely goes into releve and just holds it for at least 6 seconds at a time. Right now she is working on her left turns, and her teacher has her going back to basics. She's practicing going from plie into releve and holding it, then doing a quarter turn and then down, doing quarter turns all the way around. Then halfs, working up to the full single rotations and she does this every time she practices. It will get her much further in the end, and while the turn boards aren't too expensive, I have enough stuff to buy for dance without wasting $30+ on one if it's not going to help!

 
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