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| | | |-+  Routine or freedance, whats your choice and what do you aim for?
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Author Topic: Routine or freedance, whats your choice and what do you aim for?  (Read 4877 times)
elisedance
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ee


« Reply #45 on: August 14, 2009, 05:52:08 AM »

Curious eh?  At the last comp we do, of course, 5 dances in each heat.  We have routines for 4 (not VW) and they are fairly well understood in two (FW, W) which are our best dances, moderately well in one (T), and really not well at all in the remaining one (Q).  Sooo... why were our resutls (from worst to best) W,FT,T/VW, QS?  The exact opposite of our skill.  The most interesting one in this sequence was Q which pro changed as we walked onto the floor, patching a syllabus side (which I have no problem with) with random hop, skip, schatter chasse and chasses.  Its pretty clear that we did best in the dances where we used lead/follow and not a routine at all. 

For me at least when I dance to routine I tense a little in order to prepare myself for the next step.  Perhaps I will get good enough at it that that tensing will not be necessary - but I susect that I will still be too independent.  However, when I go into full follow mode I relax completely - you have to in order to be sufficientlysensitive to the man's lead.  Its actually the conundrum of following - you want to tense to be prepared to move but you have to relax to activate all sensors.
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ttd
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« Reply #46 on: September 23, 2011, 05:14:14 PM »

Resurrecting this for a couple of points.

My teacher has this approach that he doesn't what me to know the routine. He wants me to just follow it. But it has been written down for his benefit, since it is fairly new. I have that piece of paper, so I can go through pieces of it without a partner.

What I have noticed, however, that at times, I would follow something lead unexpectedly but things would look sloppy, and when I would know the sequence in advance, I have a better chance to make it look good, but it is a gamble, because if I know what's coming, I might not necessarily wait for the lead, and then everything goes bad.

So what I am struggling with right now is how to make somethings look polished without anticipating them.
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elisedance
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ee


« Reply #47 on: September 24, 2011, 04:37:22 AM »

Resurrecting this for a couple of points.

My teacher has this approach that he doesn't what me to know the routine. He wants me to just follow it. But it has been written down for his benefit, since it is fairly new. I have that piece of paper, so I can go through pieces of it without a partner.

What I have noticed, however, that at times, I would follow something lead unexpectedly but things would look sloppy, and when I would know the sequence in advance, I have a better chance to make it look good, but it is a gamble, because if I know what's coming, I might not necessarily wait for the lead, and then everything goes bad.

So what I am struggling with right now is how to make somethings look polished without anticipating them.

Its a lifetime pursuit!  You mentioned on another topic that you are working on Gold - this is the ideal time to learn following skills because there are only so many steps that the pro can throw at you. 

As I see it, the trick is making the waits into the special part of the dance and not just a gap between events.  The temptation is to stop dancing and tense up in fear of what will happen next.  Learn the steps then have faith - it is actually a lot harder to make an error than one fears.  Get your coach to work on shaping and expression during the links betweent the steps and then milk it.  As I see it, its the difference between a good and a great follow - what she does when the lead is making his mind up where to go next.

The benefit is that your partner will truly treasure you for he no longer has to fear that when he moves you will be moving somewhere else!

And kudos to your coach - I would kill for a pro with that attitude.  Hard as it might be at first, he is setting you up to be an ace responder (and DSV's term really is better than 'follower' in this context).
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The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
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« Reply #48 on: September 24, 2011, 09:08:16 PM »

I agree with EE. V & I always start in our warm up with just doing steps that he wishes to execute so I must learn to follow. Of course he is not a pro so his level of leading is not always powerful but improving all the time.

We do our our routines but I know that many of the couples who have now retired from the dance floor told us that they learnt figures and then had no set patterns  persay, they just used those figures to manoeuvre around the floor. I see advantages and disadvantages to both.

I prefer to know the routine only so that it becomes embedded, and will work on auto pilot but what we need to do is learnt more avoidance techniques and be able to get back to our routines so it looks effortless.

Having said that you always have to remain focused and alert otherwise you want respond to a change.
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elisedance
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ee


« Reply #49 on: September 25, 2011, 02:30:33 AM »

Routines work terrifically IF you have a lot of space.  However, if you find yourself on the dance floor with 20 couples (even worse, with mixed heats), routines can be a disaster.  One of our best comps was where they spit the dance floor and put our heat of 7 couples on with a junior standard (kids some of whom where half our height) AND a single open level american style (that is open hold like NV).  Our competitors were frozen as it was impossible to do any routine sides.  DP came to his moment of glory negotiating easily round the train wrecks 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...
ttd
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Posts: 631


« Reply #50 on: September 29, 2011, 09:37:04 PM »

Resurrecting this for a couple of points.

My teacher has this approach that he doesn't what me to know the routine. He wants me to just follow it. But it has been written down for his benefit, since it is fairly new. I have that piece of paper, so I can go through pieces of it without a partner.

What I have noticed, however, that at times, I would follow something lead unexpectedly but things would look sloppy, and when I would know the sequence in advance, I have a better chance to make it look good, but it is a gamble, because if I know what's coming, I might not necessarily wait for the lead, and then everything goes bad.

So what I am struggling with right now is how to make somethings look polished without anticipating them.

Its a lifetime pursuit!  You mentioned on another topic that you are working on Gold - this is the ideal time to learn following skills because there are only so many steps that the pro can throw at you. 

As I see it, the trick is making the waits into the special part of the dance and not just a gap between events.  The temptation is to stop dancing and tense up in fear of what will happen next.  Learn the steps then have faith - it is actually a lot harder to make an error than one fears.  Get your coach to work on shaping and expression during the links betweent the steps and then milk it.  As I see it, its the difference between a good and a great follow - what she does when the lead is making his mind up where to go next.

The benefit is that your partner will truly treasure you for he no longer has to fear that when he moves you will be moving somewhere else!

And kudos to your coach - I would kill for a pro with that attitude.  Hard as it might be at first, he is setting you up to be an ace responder (and DSV's term really is better than 'follower' in this context).

I thought about this a bit and I think I disagree somewhat with the idea that closed levels are the best time to learn following. Primarily because there is a limited number of steps you can do, so it is easy to fall into a pattern of guessing correctly what the step will be before the lead and doing it on your own instead of waiting for the lead to every part of the pattern.
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elisedance
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Posts: 34896


ee


« Reply #51 on: September 29, 2011, 10:56:14 PM »

Resurrecting this for a couple of points.

My teacher has this approach that he doesn't what me to know the routine. He wants me to just follow it. But it has been written down for his benefit, since it is fairly new. I have that piece of paper, so I can go through pieces of it without a partner.

What I have noticed, however, that at times, I would follow something lead unexpectedly but things would look sloppy, and when I would know the sequence in advance, I have a better chance to make it look good, but it is a gamble, because if I know what's coming, I might not necessarily wait for the lead, and then everything goes bad.

So what I am struggling with right now is how to make somethings look polished without anticipating them.

Its a lifetime pursuit!  You mentioned on another topic that you are working on Gold - this is the ideal time to learn following skills because there are only so many steps that the pro can throw at you. 

As I see it, the trick is making the waits into the special part of the dance and not just a gap between events.  The temptation is to stop dancing and tense up in fear of what will happen next.  Learn the steps then have faith - it is actually a lot harder to make an error than one fears.  Get your coach to work on shaping and expression during the links betweent the steps and then milk it.  As I see it, its the difference between a good and a great follow - what she does when the lead is making his mind up where to go next.

The benefit is that your partner will truly treasure you for he no longer has to fear that when he moves you will be moving somewhere else!

And kudos to your coach - I would kill for a pro with that attitude.  Hard as it might be at first, he is setting you up to be an ace responder (and DSV's term really is better than 'follower' in this context).

I thought about this a bit and I think I disagree somewhat with the idea that closed levels are the best time to learn following. Primarily because there is a limited number of steps you can do, so it is easy to fall into a pattern of guessing correctly what the step will be before the lead and doing it on your own instead of waiting for the lead to every part of the pattern.

Sure you can guess the step and do it - but I think you miss the concept because if you do did not really 'respond' and you will just infuriate your partner.  It does not matter if the step is a box step or a throw-away-oversway - the timing of the follow can NOT be determined by the woman, it has to be in sync with the man. We go through this at every practise.  We work on a sequence and then we dance it - my partner hates what I do it the first time because I am still in 'learning' mode (learning motions and how to respond) and then I switch into responding mode where I just wait for the signal to move and my mind is programmed to know when to stop and wait again.  If my partner ever asks me to 'remember to..' I just flatly refuse.  I know that if I do remember that the next time he will need something subtly different and I won't be able to respond.

When you get down to it, following is not about steps at all - at my best I don't know what steps my partner is doing I wait for a motion and lead and then I move.  Sure my body has programmed responses but these are parts of steps not the steps themselves.  Ultimately I would like to completely forget steps as a concept and instead only know motions.

[Wish DSV would comment on this... Undecided]
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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...
ttd
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Posts: 631


« Reply #52 on: September 30, 2011, 08:01:04 PM »

Yes, in theory a follower needs to follow everything one thing at a time. However, when you build up muscle memory on closed levels and you're limited to doing things in certain order, that muscle memory becomes a powerful thing. Even if you're told not to anticipate, still, being limited in what you can do cuts out a whole area of possibilities. It could be useful at times - having that muscle memory and knowing how to complete the pattern. But I don't think having that kind of muscle memory helps with following techniques.

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