At first, I wanted to get caps of Rhythmic, but there weren’t any good ones. Then I thought to get caps of Shikaco stuffing her face and getting totally wasted with Chanco, Seki, Aya, and Dad, but it’s freaking hard to get good caps of that. I was tempted to put in magazine scans, but our audience isn’t the most mature in the world. So finally, I pulled out some concert DVDs and capped what I could.
DOWNLOAD: [Chibiki] THE iDOLM@STER Cinderella Girls – 05 [720p][3016223E].mkv
Did you enjoy your first week of idol training? Probably wasn’t what you expected, right? Who knew that proper breathing technique would be so important?
I had a great time learning how to breathe properly. I feel better rested in the morning, even with the same amount of sleep each night. And I feel less fatigued and a lot more productive at work during the day. If you haven’t joined this idol training program, I highly recommend that you do.
Anyway, it’s going to be another fun week of low-strain training. But we’re still stuck at the basics―another something simple but necessary for both singing and dancing: balance and flexibility.
In both singing and dancing, a great amount of bodily control is necessary. In singing, a flexible and balanced body is a stabilized body, stabilizing the voice as well. And when dancing, they prevent injury and helps produce graceful, flowing movements. They also assist in making sounds and movements reproducible, so they are absolutely necessary for performance.
What’s more, we’ll be adding basic exercise to the training regimen in the near future, for which we’ll want to reach a certain level of balance and flexibility before we start. We don’t want anyone to get hurt.
Any stretch, like an exercise, targets specific joints and muscles. To stabilize the singing voice, we’ll want to target the hips, chest, and shoulders. And to improve in dance, we’ll want to target the shoulders, arms, and everything below the hips. I’ve gathered a few stretches that are supposed to be effective. But I’m not an expert in anatomy, so I can’t make any promises.
Holding stretches for much longer than one minute isn’t marginally effective, but anything less than half a minute isn’t particularly effective. And interspersing and repeating stretches is good for developing flexibility faster. So I’ll be holding each stretch for one minute, and cycling through the entire set three times, daily.
Remember, don’t strain yourself. If you can’t do the full stretch, go as far as you can without pain and hold it for a minute. You’ll slowly gain the flexibility to do the full stretch over time.
Oh, and remember to keep diaphragmatic breathing.
Place a waist-high stable object such as a table or chair about half a body-length from the wall. Stand up straight with your back, butt, and heels against the wall, feet shoulder-width apart. Raise your arms flat against the wall. Keeping your back straight and your butt and heels against the wall, bend at the waist until your arms rest on the stable object. If you can, keep your butt and heels against the wall and your back straight while bending at the waist, placing your hands near your toes.
Stand up straight in an open area, feet shoulder-width apart, arms down. Raise and bend your right leg, placing the soles of your foot on your left knee, toes toward the ground. Your right knee should be pointing outward to your right. Raise your arms straight, so your fingers point straight upwards.
Repeat with the other leg.
Sit up straight in an open area with your legs straight forward and flat on the ground, knees touching. The backs of your knees should be on or near the ground. Raise your arms straight, so your fingers point straight upwards. Keeping your back and legs straight, gently bend at the waist to bring your arms down beyond your feet. If possible, grab the arches of your feet and pull gently, bringing your head down to your knees. Your back should be kept straight at all times.
Sit up straight in an open area with your right leg out at a 45-degree angle from the direction you are facing. Bend your left knee so that your left foot is on your right inner-thigh and the outer side of your left leg is on the ground. Raise your arms straight, so your fingers point straight upwards. Bend on your right waist, feeling a slight tug in your left stomach and chest, and bring your left hand to the toes of your right foot. If possible, grab the toes with your left hand and bring your head down to your knees.
Repeat with the other leg.
Sit up straight in an open area. Bend both knees so that the soles of both feet are touching completely like mirror images. Bring both heels as close as possible to your inner-thighs. Press down on your knees so that the knees and outer sides of both legs touch the ground. Bring your head straight down. If your feet are far from your inner thighs, bring your head down to your feet. If your feet are close to your inner thighs, bring your head down to the ground.
Get on your hands and knees in an open area. Keep your back straight. Set your knees directly below your hips and your hands slightly forward of your shoulders. Lift your knees off the ground and place your feet flat on the ground. Keeping your arms and back straight, straighten your legs so that your legs form a right angle with your torso, butt raised high in the air.
Sit up straight in an open area with your legs straight forward and flat on the ground, knees touching. Slide your left foot under your right knee until your left heel touches your right butt. Cross your right leg over your left and pull your right heel around until it touches your left butt. Keep your weight on your butt. Stretch your right arm out parallel to the ground, thumb pointing towards the ground and palm facing behind you. Stretch your left arm out parallel to the ground, thumb pointing upwards and palm facing ahead of you. Bend both arms at the elbows, bringing your right hand behind your back from below and your left hand behind your back from above. Try to bring your hands together, and if possible hook fingers.
Repeat with the other side.
Kneel on the floor with your knees shoulder-width apart. Your back should form a single line with your thighs, perpendicular to the floor. The tops of your calves and tops of your feet should form a single line, all touching the ground. Place your palms on your heels. Keeping your thighs and lower back straight and supporting yourself on straight arms, bend backwards from your middle back until your arms are perpendicular to the ground and your head is over your feet. Make sure your pelvis is not thrusted out or your butt bent―your thighs and lower back should form a single line perpendicular to the ground.