American ballerina Misty Copeland, famous for challenging ingrained stereotypes of physique and race in Ballet, has been promoted to the highest rank of the American Ballet Theatre, becoming the first African-American female principal dancer in the company’s 75-year history!
“I had moments of doubting myself, and wanting to quit, because I didn’t know that there would be a future for an African-American woman to make it to this level,” Copeland said at a news conference. “At the same time, it made me so hungry to push through, to carry the next generation. So it’s not me up here – and I’m constantly saying that – it’s everyone that came before me that got me to this position.”
32-year-old Copeland has pushed through many struggles but has now achieved her goals. Remember this UnderArmour ad?
Want a strong core and a ballerina’s perfect posture? Add these tummy-tightening moves from Barre Body instructor Jessika Munnell’s ballet-inspired workout, designed for WH. Find the full Barre Body workout here!
You’ll need: A mat or soft carpet, a ball, light (1kg) dumbbells…
Lie on your back with your left leg extended, toes pointed, and right knee bent, foot flat on the floor. Your arms should be straight behind you, palms up. Ground your lower back by firmly tucking your tailbone (A). Exhale and roll your upper body up while lifting your right leg up, keeping it straight (B). Inhale as your roll back down. That’s one rep. Do 15 and on the last rep, hold the top position for 10 seconds, taking your arms to your sides (C). Repeat with the opposite leg.
Tip: Use light dumbbells to add resistance. Try to roll up and down slowly, staying in your “C” curve.
Sit upright with your legs bent, feet flat on the floor, hip distance apart. Wedge a ball at your lower back and lean back against it. Take your arms forward, palms facing down, hands together holding dumbbells. Exhale and twist right, bending your right elbow and compressing the right side of your waist. Inhale and return to start. That’s one rep. Do 10, then repeat on the other side. Keep your hips and knees square when twisting.