Biomechanics For the Dancer

Apr 2019

This class would've been interesting if it wasn't taught supremely badly. Leigh attempts to skim over the entirety of the human body's anatomy as well as physics concepts, reading off of slides, while delving into neither. This means, unfortunately, you don't actually learn anything. The physics portion, although hardly covered in class, takes up the majority of the homework, midterm, and final, meaning that if you haven't taken physics in a while, you're going to need someone to re-teach you the concepts (because Leigh certainly doesn't) and the assignments will be a source of stress. If you are good at physics, this class will be boring for you because the concepts are very basic. Whenever the assignments aren't physics oriented and are long answer, it can be hard to decipher what she's actually asking of you. She's extremely subjective and doesn't seem to grade on effort at all, only things she expects you to know even if she hasn't taught it to you. This leaves a lot of room for favoritism. Leigh is extremely knowledgable and it's clear she knows her stuff, so it's unfortunate she can't teach. You'll get an A or B, but you'll regret taking the class.

Nov 2007

After reading the other reviews of Sabrina, I wanted to clarify a few things. She's extremely direct, which if you have a tendency towards hypersensitivity, can seem mean. I actually found her comments about my body extremely helpful. She has a lot of working experience and she can see where your body is imbalanced, weak or tight, and when she points these things out it is for your benefit not because she derives pleasure out of it or because she is mean-spirited. (As a sidenote, I sincerely doubt she's ever called anyone fat. I assume this is a result of sensitivity and misunderstanding on the part of the student.) In terms of the coursework, I was not so impressed. Her course pack is disorganized and it's nearly impossible to find anything. As for her teaching abilities, I can't say much. She gives you a book with the information, but she doesn't really know how to teach it besides reading the text and using her mug/pen/any random accessory to (poorly) illustrate the movements. That said, the exercises were helpful, though she often forgot to explain or even mention why we were doing them. Probably not worth it to take the class (you might as well just buy Anatomy of Human Movement and go take some Feldenkreis or floor barre classes).

Dec 2005

This class could have been really amazing...except that Sabrina ruined it. This woman was so cruel to me..I can't even contain myself. I wasn't a ballarina so she seemed to refuse to take me seriously, accusing me of not paying attention in class and never wanting to help me outside of class. Futhermore, in my opinion she publically humiliates girls in class, pointing out whats wrong with them, making fun of them. She seems to think her method of teching ballet is the ONLY method and makes fun of girls in the class for having learned other ways. Her teaching is vague and wishy- washy, yet her exams are hard and she barely prepares you for them. She made me cry the two times I came for extra help outside of class...telling me I was out of shape, chubby, and asked me why I didn't understand any of the material. I did the readings and all the exercises, never missed class yet somehow...she was absolutely awful.

Dec 2004

Be prepared to deal with Sabrina at her best/worst if you want to survive this class. Biomechanics is physically gruelling, and although everyone taking the class is a dancer, Sabrina's acceptance of individual needs is limited. Be prepared to attend class on Fridays because she is often sick or unable to make it to class during the regularly scheduled hours. The material in the text book is fascinating and has helped me a great deal, but Sabrina's own informational packet often contains spelling errors, contradictory information, and basically lacks a clear structure. I've gotten more inshape with this class than with any gym, and I've been sore in places I didn't know existed. Bottom line is that if you're a Sabrina fan you will eat this class up, but if you have that oh-so-common love/hate or hate/hate relationship with her then brace yourself because it's gonna be a bumpy ride!

May 2003

If you are a dedicated dancer (or any athlete for that matter), regardless of skill level, you must take this class. You will learn how to use your body, how to speak about your body (anatomically), and how to make your body last. Sabrina teaches, baby step by baby step, how to overcome everything from a "bad standing leg" to an ankle sprain to flat feet to a dislocated shoulder. Be ready to work hard in class, and she will be warm and generous. She will adjust her lectures to focus on the students' concerns and even stay after class to work on your uneven hips. Sabrina doesn't seem to be a tough grader, but she doesn't really need to use grades to get you to work hard. You will do well and feel that you earned it. This is one of the best classes in the department.

May 2003

If you're interested in learning a lot of good stuff about body, take this class-- as long as you are prepared to deal with Sabrina. She's really nice, despite what other reviewers say, and she really cares about her students, but her manner is unorthodox and unorganized. Also, even if the schedule lists the class as being only two hours, be prepared to stay for almost three hours, and don't worry if you feel like you're getting sucked in to a Sabrina cult-- you are. But she really will help you figure out your own body and you'll leave the class feeling like you've learned something, even if it's only how to pronounce "Feldenkreis."