Learning how to turtle will take some time and dedication. Doing a turtle maneuver during your breakdancing routine is not nearly one of the most physically taxing moves you can do, but there is a certain level of conditioning you'll need to reach before you can pull it off successfully. The turtle is one of those moves that showcase the breakdancer's mastery over balance. It is also, in some ways, a showcase of strength. With these tips, you'll be well on your way to pulling off the turtle maneuver. As always, be careful in attempting these moves because you run the risk of injury trying to pull off the turtle along with any other move.
- The turtle maneuver is a stand-still breakdancing move. You're basically balancing your body on top of your arms. Your spread palms are the only part of your body making contact with the floor. You can understand what we mean by "conditioning" now, right? Though there are tricks to conserve your energy during this cool balancing act, the turtle requires the b-boy to put a great amount of stress on the palms, wrists and forearms.
- The most important element to learning to successfully turtle is knowing how to position your body. The most important extremities that need to be positioned are the arms. While lying on your stomach, you need to raise up the trunk of your body and tuck your upper arms into your stomach. Angle them so the elbows are facing each other. They should actually be almost touching. You're creating a V-shape that will help with your balancing act. Try to position your tucked upper arms in between the areas of your waist and hips to about the belly button.
- Because the turtle requires you to balance on your hands, it's important to create as much surface area with them as possible. Spread your fingers. Your hands will be naturally facing away from each other in this position, which will help with distribution of weight. The majority of the weight will be handled by your palms.
- Your lower extremities are of the utmost importance for balance. Don't have them waving all around. They need to be pulled towards your torso and spread to the sides of you body. But not to far, not yet anyway. You're not going to be strong enough to do that yet. You should look like you're crouching.
- Once you get the positioning down, it's time to try to balance. Be warned: the first time you attempt the turtle, you probably won't be able to get up for a few attempts. You won't be able to balance for long because your wrists won't be used to that much pressure on them. Put your weight on your palms and try to lift up on them. Pulling your body as close together as you can is the only way to do it. Remember the previous steps or you're sure to fall.
- The first few times you attempt the turtle, you'll notice the difficulty in breathing. You'll need to learn how to take shallow, short and quick breaths. Once you've practiced on the balancing portion of the move, you can try to walk. You'll know when you're ready to walk because your abs and upper body will be in better shape than when you started. You'll also be able to hold yourself in the turtle position for long periods of time. Walking is just a matter of switching your weight from one hand to another, moving forward, backward and in a circle. Yeah, you'll definitely need a lot of practice for this one.
- Once you've learned how to pull the turtle off by itself, you need to figure out how to incorporate it into your routine. The only way to do it so it looks cool is to do it fast. You should be able to jump into and out of it right away. If not you'll just look stupid. Again, all of this will require a lot of practice.
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