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Author Topic: Why do you compete?  (Read 3374 times)
Some guy
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« Reply #30 on: February 16, 2011, 01:07:49 PM »

That is SO true.  One critical factor of ballroom dancing is ease - couples who try too hard often lack that ease on the floor that non-competetive couples have
Makes you wonder what they're really competing at huh?   Wink 
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elisedance
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« Reply #31 on: February 16, 2011, 01:23:14 PM »

That is SO true.  One critical factor of ballroom dancing is ease - couples who try too hard often lack that ease on the floor that non-competetive couples have
Makes you wonder what they're really competing at huh?   Wink 

I find it rather poetic - and maybe thats why I find ballroom competition so intriguing. I mean you can try hard as you like in most sports (throw it faster, swim harder etc) but there are few where trying is its own undoing.

Its actually true - I dance way better when I relax and don't try at all.
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

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Some guy
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« Reply #32 on: February 16, 2011, 03:00:12 PM »

I like what I'm hearing.  Also, you might want to find out if there's a way to satisfy all your needs: the need to try, the need to do, the need to "know", the need to feel competitive, as well the need to end up looking calm and non competitive.  The only hint I can give you is that you can change what you're competing at.   Wink
« Last Edit: February 16, 2011, 03:02:14 PM by Some guy » Logged
elisedance
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« Reply #33 on: February 16, 2011, 03:39:19 PM »

I need a new topic Smiley
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
Some guy
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« Reply #34 on: February 17, 2011, 10:45:00 AM »

Here's a martial arts example of what I'm talking about:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2R4gi2k7Uk8&feature=related

The guy in the black is Donnie Yen, he's playing Ipman (Bruce Lee's coach) in the movie.  He uses a style of martial arts developed for women to fight the big bad guy in brown that's attacking him in his own house.  Note that the attacker is very physical and hard, kinda like how I used to be at competitions 'cause I thought the more physical and sharp and hard it looked, the more my chances of winning increased.  Turns out that all those traits are only an illusion, and performing them as such only makes you weaker and more vulnerable to disaster (floor anomalies, other couples, partner getting in the way of your performance).  The defender in the attached movie clip is very soft and fluid and adaptable to any situation.  He doesn't know what's going to come at him next, but he just plays with his attacker and whatever environmental obstructions get in the way.  Everything becomes like a toy that he plays with.  The energy of playfulness keeps him calm and fluid without any excess "trying".  I think the part where he fights a sword with a feather duster (and defeats it) sums up what happens at dance competitions.  Watch it with the sound off because the sound effects are obviously added and only enhances the illusion... just like music does at a dance competition.  

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millitiz
Intermediate Bronze

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« Reply #35 on: February 28, 2011, 03:30:05 PM »

Just come back from a competition - and realized that competitions, beside everything, also provided me a more physical goal to achieve.

So I have a friend (teammate, and roommate apparently) - and we both compete at the same level (they got three 1st and one 2nd, and we got three 2nd, and one 1st). And beating him on the dance floor, for me at least, provides an immediate goal, a goal that I could grab. I mean, yes, we can talk about competition helping you to improve, but that for me, is a bit abstract. Heck,technically speaking, we improve every time we practice (yea, I am being a bit sloppy here). As GE26 put in another thread, basically, he is my "friendly rival(s)." I think it is beneficial for both parties - the winning one wouldn't want to get surpassed, so s/he would work his or her a$$ off. And the loosing one would want to beat the winning one, hence working hard too.

That is another reason why I like being in a dancing community - the sense of both the comradeship and the rivalry.

As one of my coaches described, off the floor, we are good friends. But once we are on the competition floor, we want to win - and we wouldn't feel sorry to take first from each others' hand.
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elisedance
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« Reply #36 on: February 28, 2011, 03:50:09 PM »

MLZ - I think you put this very well.  I particularly like the term 'friendly rivalry' - that describes (most) of my dancing peers...
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
Rugby
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« Reply #37 on: February 28, 2011, 11:49:36 PM »

I agree.  We may want to win but never, ever to belittle our competitors or make them feel like they are the lesser dancers.  You may win that day and next time they may win.  Even if you win more often it certainly doesn't mean you are the better dancer.  Perhaps on the comp floor you are able to put it out there better whereas for some the nerves or what have you causes them to not perform up to their optimum.  A competitor can win and I may not have any respect for them.  Another may lose more often then not but I will have all the respect in the world for them.  The difference is that I respect the journey that they are on and that they place the learning to dance over the winning.  Winning is easy compared to the blood, sweat and tears that learning the art of dancing can bring.
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Everyone tries to rush up through the syllabus levles and think once they are at the top they have arrived.  What they don't realize is that by doing this it is like skimming through a book, you may get the gist but you will never understand the story.
elisedance
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« Reply #38 on: March 01, 2011, 04:10:51 AM »

And to that you can add that winning is easy compared to carrying on when you repeatedly loose.  I'd take it further to say that you don't really have a dance partnership unless you have endured a long period of loosing...

Kinda think this should be in a different topic ...
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
millitiz
Intermediate Bronze

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« Reply #39 on: March 01, 2011, 11:26:54 AM »

And to that you can add that winning is easy compared to carrying on when you repeatedly loose.  I'd take it further to say that you don't really have a dance partnership unless you have endured a long period of loosing...

Kinda think this should be in a different topic ...

Then I must have a great partnership Grin. Although, even without that statement, I still think that I have a perfect (at least locally) partner. I had personal experience on that - repeatedly loosing. Though my story is a bit more complicated. We couldn't get through the first round for many competitions - not even in Bronze - roughly a year (does that count as long?). I have to admit, it was a stressful situation for both of us. There were tears, yelling, finger pointing involving. I think it is quite stressful for my partner, because she loves Latin, and we kept not doing well in that particular style. And I think she took it personal when we also didn't do well in Standard. For me, since my partner had danced with another lead in a considerably large comp, and got finals - I took it personal that, when we didn't final in Latin, then it must be me. After all, she could make to the finals, and the only difference is the lead. I always have the feeling that I am not good enough for her, therefore I'd need to work harder. But we do manage to get through it =D.

 I think there are a few keys. For one, as illustrated in the previous para, when facing the stress of repeatedly loosing, we both look into ourselves first. We both "took it personal." If we couldn't win, then we would practice harder.
Also, I think we both have strong wills - we are both very committed (one of the reasons why I formed this partnership), and we wanted to achieve greatness - whatever that is. Yes, we would take some time to lick our wounds - but the next day, we would get back to the floor and practice. I think you can call it stubbornness. Wink
Also, we talked. We communicate. I think, just like the real relationship, really helps to stabilize the partnership. If we had any concern of each other, of the partnership, we talk. And we apologize when we did wrongs.
Combining with the previous point, I think we both have some sense of forgiveness - we let go some of the small irritations, and we accept the apoloigies from each others.
The last one, though this is more as a joke, unfortunately, she didn't have too many options. Grin. In a general sense that within our community, good leads normally already had a partner. Also, once she told me (because I felt insecure) that, even with other options on our team, she still would like to be my partner because of various reasons.
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Some guy
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« Reply #40 on: March 01, 2011, 01:07:19 PM »

That's a great story Millitiz. I don't think I can say anything that hasn't already been said.  So let me see what best describes what I have to say Millitiz:

“Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.” - Marilyn vos Savant. 
In the same vein, "You don't drown by falling in the water; you drown by staying there." -- Edwin Louis Cole.

"Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker. Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end. Failure is something we can avoid only by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing." -- Denis Waitley
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elisedance
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« Reply #41 on: March 01, 2011, 05:18:10 PM »


Also, we talked. We communicate. I think, just like the real relationship, really helps to stabilize the partnership.

Theres lots and lots of plusses in your post - but this one made me smile.  You mean a life partnership? 
Think about it - how honest are you really to your life partner?  As much as is necessary to get on, to maintain your relationship and to be good friends.  Often we are not honest with our life partners to spare them our daily pains, I'm sure we all do it even with a soul mate.  Although a dance partnership is obviously less dimentional - it is in many ways MUCH more honest and requires more open communication.  You just can't dance together if you lie to each other.  I find the same thing in science when I collaborate - there is no room at all for dishonesty (at least in the science). 

I sometimes think one should compare a life partnership to almost measuring up to a dance one, and not the other way round!
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
elisedance
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« Reply #42 on: March 01, 2011, 05:18:45 PM »

SG:
"You don't drown by falling in the water; you drown by staying there." -- Edwin Louis Cole.

Love it!

Which reminds me I had better go home - there is a violin waiting for me Cheesy
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
millitiz
Intermediate Bronze

Posts: 220


« Reply #43 on: March 02, 2011, 12:04:36 PM »


Also, we talked. We communicate. I think, just like the real relationship, really helps to stabilize the partnership.

Theres lots and lots of plusses in your post - but this one made me smile.  You mean a life partnership? 
Think about it - how honest are you really to your life partner?  As much as is necessary to get on, to maintain your relationship and to be good friends.  Often we are not honest with our life partners to spare them our daily pains, I'm sure we all do it even with a soul mate.  Although a dance partnership is obviously less dimentional - it is in many ways MUCH more honest and requires more open communication.  You just can't dance together if you lie to each other.  I find the same thing in science when I collaborate - there is no room at all for dishonesty (at least in the science). 

I sometimes think one should compare a life partnership to almost measuring up to a dance one, and not the other way round!
Yes, that is what I meant, life partnership. Although I am too young to think in terms of that - I was actually thinking as "dating" @'_'@
I think, IMHO, there is the lying, and there is not telling the truth. Both are being dishonest, but I think they are different.
As you said, we might "not [be] honest with our life partners to spare them our daily pains" - but same is true for dance partner. You don't really complain about things to them, right? I am probably starting to mix up things - but for me at least, I think what is on the floor stays on the floor, and what is off the floor stays off the floor. I don't really care whether you (generic you) have a sh**y day, we are here on the floor to practice, so I need you to be focused, and put in 100% effort. Anything less than that is, to be honest, wasting both of our time. Want to rant, to chat? No problem, but let's do it off the floor. We are friends after all (well, I hope so...)

I also understand that there are really bad days. But then maybe we can just call it a day off. Although once in a while, it is ok to be a bit slacking when practicing. Or just have some fun.

When I said talking and communicating, I was mostly referring to on-floor behaviors. While I think it is nice to chat a bit in between, and while I care her as a person, I don't typically mind how she manages her private life.
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elisedance
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« Reply #44 on: March 02, 2011, 12:30:05 PM »

You've got it.  Although off the floor stuff tends to become a bigger and bigger part of the partnership.  And this starts with a few main issues: competition for time with life partners; money (doesn't everything) and the biggest one, health.  Any health issue for your partner becomes a health issue for the partnership and I think thats one area where partnerships are most tested.  For example, I know of one case where the lead needed a knee replacement.  What was his partner to do?  I don't think anyone would have judged her badly if she had sought a new partner but she did not (admitedly there are multiple factors there too - not least of which available alternatives).  She stuck it out, helped him back on his feet (literally) and their dance partnership was greatly strengthened by the experience (he actually danced far better after). 

Again, it depends on the goals.  The above almost certainly could not have happened at the top levels of professional or amateur dancing - I don't think many people would dream they could remain competetive.  Thus, if your goal is to be world champion a medical issue may force you to a new partner. 

The point is it is hard to spend so much time with someone without the relationship spilling into almost all areas of your life.  You practice together, go out to socials together, go to competitions, parties, breakfasts (and may share a room to cut costs) etc.  And then you have to explain moods (rest of your life) finance (can't afford this comp) etc etc.  Whats left Cheesy
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
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