Technical tips for Fouette turns

by Annaliese

I can do double and triple turns and I am now starting to work on my fouette turns. I was just wondering if you had any tips or exercises that would help me achieve my goal of being able to do fouette turns?

Comments for Technical tips for Fouette turns

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Jan 04, 2012
Answer from Maria to technical tips for Fouette turns
by: Maria

Dear Annaliese,

First of all, remember that you must be comfortable doing various single and continuous pirouettes from fifth position before you start learning the Fouette turns.

If you are ready, then start the process progressively, at the barre as usual.

Do a complete, proper barre for your level and introduce the preparing exercises just after the rond de jambes:

-preparation at fourth position in demi plié with working leg derrière, working arm to the side

-relevé passé devant; same arm of working leg to first position; count: one

- plié and extend your working leg forward to 90 degrees; count: two

-relevé and whip the working leg to the side, still to 90 degrees; working arm to the side; count: and

-bring the working leg to passé quickly; arm goes back to first; count: three

-repeat counts two to three several times

-close position and change side

After several days of practicing this exercise and when you feel that you are not loosing placement and balance, you should introduce the turn en dehors at the count of 'and three'.

Again, only after you feel comfortable with the exercise at the barre, take it with the same progression to the center (no turn first). Start with a few times and add the amount of fouette turns progressively as your strength adapts to the challenge.

Here are some tips:

1. Stable body placement is the key. Try to maintain as much stability in your hips as possible.

2. Check balance after each passé or turn.

3. Don't forget spotting.

4. Use your arms.

5. Do a good demi plié, but use it for the momentum without sinking down.

6. The working leg should not loose time when reaching forward; that is a passing through movement and not a position.

7. Find the right speed to practice. Too slow will prevent you from feeling the momentum and too fast will prevent you from controlling movement. Gain speed only in time and take your time to understand the match of the body placement and the particular rhythms of the fouette tour.

8. Do not exceed with force as it will take you out of balance. Relax and think of the fouette tour as a simple, single tour.

9. Not to slam down the floor when doing the demi plié; keep the usual suspension used for pirouettes and rebound quickly.

10. The 90 degrees of the leg will fit if you have a really flexible hip; if that level is taking you out of balance you might need to practice at 45 degrees or in between; balance and correct placement here are more important than the elevation of the leg.

11. Remember the trick for all turns: their end is up and not down. Down is for the closing position and it comes only after the end of the turn.

12. Do not study the Fouette turns without having done a complete proper barre before.

13. Practice A LOT... ;-)

And... let us know how you get on and if you gather more technical tips for doing the Fouette turns. I'm sure many of the visitors of will be interested!

Warm regards,


Jan 05, 2012
by: Annaliese

Thanks so much, I have been doing that for the past 2 days and will keep on practising at the barre. Thanks for the help x

Aug 30, 2013
Just thanks!
by: Anonymous

As a teacher.....Thank you.

Feb 15, 2014
by: Nick

I have noticed children where I teach are struggling with a piourette,can you describe a piourette

Feb 18, 2014
Maria's reply for Nick
by: Maria

Dear Nick,

i just answered to your question here:

How to do a pirouette en dehors and en dedans

I hope it helps!

Feb 11, 2015
45 degrees
by: Anonymous

Thank you for mentioning that it is ok to do fouettes at 45. I have had some difference of opinions between teachers at our studio and logically 45 makes the most sense if you can't open to second and go to retire without a lifted hip. :)
90 is the goal but must have correct placements first completely agree with you.

Jun 20, 2018
non ballet dancers
by: Anonymous

is there a way you can explain how to do a fouette turn for someone whos not in ballet, like using less ballet terms or something

Jun 23, 2018
Fouette turns
by: Maria

Hi there!

See if this helps:

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