How to Teach a Back Attitude Leap

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A calypso leap is more of an advanced leap that involves both leaping and turning. Adina Belanger and Ali Geraets give advice on how to properly execute this skill.

A back attitude leap can be prepped into in many different ways, but most commonly they begin with a chaine. Although a calypso is mainly a leap, it also involves turning. This means there are many more elements that one needs to think about while practicing.

To begin, you will start in a chaine position to do two chains. The first chaine will be in releve and the second in plie. From there, the right leg will brush up to extend and the back leg will be in an attitude position. The left arm is lifted and the right arm is out to the side. You want to think about hitting a right split, but with a bent back leg. It may help to sit on the floor to feel the correct position. As for the upper body, you can release back if you feel comfortable, but if you’re new to a calypso leap, remain up straight. You will land on your right leg and spin out of it.

Since this is a turning jump, you have to spot the direction you’re going. The chaines will spot to the right, but your head will shift to the front of the room when you hit the highest point of the leap. This leap does jump up, but it also travels. If you are new to this jump, practice the same motion with straight legs so you can get used to the correct path of travel.

The hip is one of the biggest thing to focus on. Your shoulders and hips should be stacked on top of one another during this jump. If you choose to release your upper body, be cautious of engaging your core the second you land.

It’s also important to pop both legs at the same time. The leap should happen at the same time rather than feeling like you’re hopping over something. It will help to think about aiming the front leg to the corner so you have time to get the back leg up simultaneously. Use your plie so you can get enough power to move.