What Does Tendu Mean in Ballet Terms?


Tendu is a French term used in ballet to describe one of the foundational movements. It literally means ‘to stretch’ and it is usually performed with the working leg extended and pointed in the direction of movement, with the supporting leg slightly bent.

The tendu exercise is an essential part of a dancer’s training. It helps to develop strength, balance and flexibility in the feet and legs, as well as teaching control and precision. The tendu movement can be performed in all directions, including forward, backward, side-to-side, and diagonally.

In addition to being a basic building block of technique, tendus are also used as transitions between steps in various combinations. This helps to create smooth lines while dancing across the floor. The dancer must be aware of their balance at all times while performing a tendu exercise so that they can keep their centre of gravity over their standing foot.

A good way for dancers to practice tendus is by keeping their eyes on a fixed point – this will help them focus on their alignment and balance during the movement. There are also variations of tendus which involve angular movements or jumps over one or both legs – these are more advanced exercises which should only be attempted by experienced dancers under supervision from an experienced teacher.

Tendu exercises are important for any dancer aiming to perfect their technique and gain strength in their feet and legs. They not only help to improve flexibility but also develop control over transitions between steps which will create better lines while dancing across the floor. With practice and supervision from an experienced teacher, dancers will soon be able to use tendus fluently in all directions as part of their training routine.

Conclusion: In conclusion, ‘tendu’ is an essential French term used in ballet to describe one of the foundational movements involving stretching legs with control and precision while maintaining balance over supporting foot. It helps build strength, balance and flexibility in feet and legs while creating smooth transition lines when dancing across floor. With practice under supervision from experienced teacher, dancers can master this skill easily as part of their training routine for perfect technique development.