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Author Topic: Learning routines - the ladies perspective...  (Read 2065 times)
elisedance
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ee


« on: June 20, 2012, 07:06:40 PM »

When I went back to CP (old pro is now new pro - NP) I put my foot down about only one thing - that I was not going to study routines.  What I've learned from DSV has stuck: that the woman does not learn the routine as an independent act.  This is where I went wrong before - if you learn the routine you end up with, in effect, TWO partners: one in your arms (the one you should be following) and another in your head (the one you should ignore). 

what I told him was that yes, indeed, I would learn the routine but only through his body, his dancing.  The result (and it is working) is that even though gradually I am becoming familiar with his 'routine', its always secondary to what his body is going to do.  This may be the most important thing in following for if you have a programmed idea of where the dance is scheduled to do you are always going to be tense incase he actually does something different.

interestingly, I find I follow best when we first start our lesson - when I actually have very little memory of what the routines are - conscious memory that is, somewhere inside my sub-conscious mind my body knows how to respond to the things CP might do and not to the things I expect him to do.

I would say this is the most satisfying and relaxed dancing I have done ever.  And cudos to CP for putting up with it for its surely not something he has come upon before - it takes courage to let dancing speak for itself rather than memorization.

Smiley
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2012, 10:53:22 AM »

When I went back to CP (old pro is now new pro - NP) I put my foot down about only one thing - that I was not going to study routines.  What I've learned from DSV has stuck: that the woman does not learn the routine as an independent act.  This is where I went wrong before - if you learn the routine you end up with, in effect, TWO partners: one in your arms (the one you should be following) and another in your head (the one you should ignore). 

what I told him was that yes, indeed, I would learn the routine but only through his body, his dancing.  The result (and it is working) is that even though gradually I am becoming familiar with his 'routine', its always secondary to what his body is going to do.  This may be the most important thing in following for if you have a programmed idea of where the dance is scheduled to do you are always going to be tense incase he actually does something different.

interestingly, I find I follow best when we first start our lesson - when I actually have very little memory of what the routines are - conscious memory that is, somewhere inside my sub-conscious mind my body knows how to respond to the things CP might do and not to the things I expect him to do.

I would say this is the most satisfying and relaxed dancing I have done ever.  And cudos to CP for putting up with it for its surely not something he has come upon before - it takes courage to let dancing speak for itself rather than memorization.

Smiley

My teachers used to say that if the ladies learn the routine then you end up with two drivers but no engine/car. If you have no engine/car then you will always have trouble in the long run.

Well done, Elise. It is difficult to change the approach to what you are doing. It normally takes a serious need for change or repetition by a coach/teacher of this belief to change the approch. Kudos to you and CP for doing it this way, I know it is new and strange to dancers that haven’t done it this way before. 

I agree that with time you get familiar with the grouping that the man dances most often. The man will normally have grouping that he feel good and familiar doing and those groupings are what he will dance majority of the time. The thing about this approach is that if he for some reason change the order or the grouping the lady will have no issue dealing with the change. If you are dancing a routine and the man even thinks of changing things up then the lady is in big trouble. When the lady doesn’t learn the routine then she doesn’t get into trouble when he changes the routine.

It can feel like work having to not remember the routine. I agree this is often easier in the beginning of a practice when you don’t consciously remember what the order of the steps that the man chooses to dance. I used to think of it as an “on and off switch”. I would turn the switch on off when I wanted to not pay attention to the routine. I would then only focus on my jobs and on going forward and backward.

I applaud you both for giving this way of dancing a go even when you are not working with a Body School or Square School coach. I can totally understand the challenge that you must have gone through to get to this point. Well done!

DSV
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elisedance
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ee


« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2012, 01:03:18 PM »

I think I just got a gold star!  Cool Cool Cheesy Cheesy
Oh, and CP too Wink Smiley
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ttd
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« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2012, 10:35:03 PM »

I wonder how much of this applies to american smooth. I have started working on gold smooth, and while there are definitely parts which I don't have to know because I can follow them, there is also some side by side work without any physical contact, and I feel like those are the parts I need to remember. There's also an added element of what to do with your arms, not all of that can be lead either.
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elisedance
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ee


« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2012, 11:56:42 PM »

I wonder how much of this applies to american smooth. I have started working on gold smooth, and while there are definitely parts which I don't have to know because I can follow them, there is also some side by side work without any physical contact, and I feel like those are the parts I need to remember. There's also an added element of what to do with your arms, not all of that can be lead either.

I think the same thing holds in latin where the couple often dance side by side.  On the one hand you probably have to learn it - on the other if you tried to do it in perfect synch by just learning it would probably never happen!

I think we have to separate 'routine' from 'actions' (for want of a better word).  Thus, in standard I don't learn the routine but I do learn what to do with my body in any dance situation.  Ballet does the same thing I believe.  Isn't that the case for the example you raise of arm motions?  That once you have learned what the correct arm motions are they will simply happen depending on the dance step?  I'm asking 'cause I really don't know smooth much at all!
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ttd
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« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2012, 10:06:43 AM »

I wonder how much of this applies to american smooth. I have started working on gold smooth, and while there are definitely parts which I don't have to know because I can follow them, there is also some side by side work without any physical contact, and I feel like those are the parts I need to remember. There's also an added element of what to do with your arms, not all of that can be lead either.

I think the same thing holds in latin where the couple often dance side by side.  On the one hand you probably have to learn it - on the other if you tried to do it in perfect synch by just learning it would probably never happen!

I think we have to separate 'routine' from 'actions' (for want of a better word).  Thus, in standard I don't learn the routine but I do learn what to do with my body in any dance situation.  Ballet does the same thing I believe.  Isn't that the case for the example you raise of arm motions?  That once you have learned what the correct arm motions are they will simply happen depending on the dance step?  I'm asking 'cause I really don't know smooth much at all!
Well, once your arms are no longer in the frame hold, they need to be an extension of your back, but there isn't just one correct way how to achieve that. And that isn't being lead for most part, it's up to the girl to either memorize what she does with her arms on a given move or figure out which movements make sense and which don't and choose from the ones that make sense at any given moment.
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elisedance
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ee


« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2012, 01:20:54 PM »

I wonder how much of this applies to american smooth. I have started working on gold smooth, and while there are definitely parts which I don't have to know because I can follow them, there is also some side by side work without any physical contact, and I feel like those are the parts I need to remember. There's also an added element of what to do with your arms, not all of that can be lead either.

I think the same thing holds in latin where the couple often dance side by side.  On the one hand you probably have to learn it - on the other if you tried to do it in perfect synch by just learning it would probably never happen!

I think we have to separate 'routine' from 'actions' (for want of a better word).  Thus, in standard I don't learn the routine but I do learn what to do with my body in any dance situation.  Ballet does the same thing I believe.  Isn't that the case for the example you raise of arm motions?  That once you have learned what the correct arm motions are they will simply happen depending on the dance step?  I'm asking 'cause I really don't know smooth much at all!
Well, once your arms are no longer in the frame hold, they need to be an extension of your back, but there isn't just one correct way how to achieve that. And that isn't being lead for most part, it's up to the girl to either memorize what she does with her arms on a given move or figure out which movements make sense and which don't and choose from the ones that make sense at any given moment.

so is that the answer - that its a girl thing so the lead (or learning too) is irrelevant?
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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: 642


« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2012, 01:45:31 PM »

I wonder how much of this applies to american smooth. I have started working on gold smooth, and while there are definitely parts which I don't have to know because I can follow them, there is also some side by side work without any physical contact, and I feel like those are the parts I need to remember. There's also an added element of what to do with your arms, not all of that can be lead either.

I think the same thing holds in latin where the couple often dance side by side.  On the one hand you probably have to learn it - on the other if you tried to do it in perfect synch by just learning it would probably never happen!

I think we have to separate 'routine' from 'actions' (for want of a better word).  Thus, in standard I don't learn the routine but I do learn what to do with my body in any dance situation.  Ballet does the same thing I believe.  Isn't that the case for the example you raise of arm motions?  That once you have learned what the correct arm motions are they will simply happen depending on the dance step?  I'm asking 'cause I really don't know smooth much at all!
Well, once your arms are no longer in the frame hold, they need to be an extension of your back, but there isn't just one correct way how to achieve that. And that isn't being lead for most part, it's up to the girl to either memorize what she does with her arms on a given move or figure out which movements make sense and which don't and choose from the ones that make sense at any given moment.

so is that the answer - that its a girl thing so the lead (or learning too) is irrelevant?
I'd say the answer is that there are places where a girl becomes much more autonomous in what she does.
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2012, 11:06:07 PM »

I wonder how much of this applies to american smooth. I have started working on gold smooth, and while there are definitely parts which I don't have to know because I can follow them, there is also some side by side work without any physical contact, and I feel like those are the parts I need to remember. There's also an added element of what to do with your arms, not all of that can be lead either.

When you reach a higher level you will find that you are able to read your partners mind and know what he wants to do (timing, direction, power and step) before he does it. That kind of insight and skill will take time and practice to master. My partner and I used a technique called “sending and receiving” to learn this skill. This kind of skill used to be thought of as hocus pocus but it is now proven that it is a skill that can be learned by everybody.

DSV
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ttd
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« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2012, 12:46:49 AM »

I wonder how much of this applies to american smooth. I have started working on gold smooth, and while there are definitely parts which I don't have to know because I can follow them, there is also some side by side work without any physical contact, and I feel like those are the parts I need to remember. There's also an added element of what to do with your arms, not all of that can be lead either.

When you reach a higher level you will find that you are able to read your partners mind and know what he wants to do (timing, direction, power and step) before he does it. That kind of insight and skill will take time and practice to master. My partner and I used a technique called “sending and receiving” to learn this skill. This kind of skill used to be thought of as hocus pocus but it is now proven that it is a skill that can be learned by everybody.

DSV
Even when you have no physical contact? So far, all side by side work I'm doing is such that he is in my line of sight, so I can get some visual clues if I lose track what we're doing, or it's free turns he leads from some contact point. Single hand contact or shadow position is more or less followable, except that there is still the matter of what to do with the free arm.
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #10 on: July 24, 2012, 08:36:14 PM »

Yes, even if he was at the other end of the floor and you couldn't see him. As I said that kind on sensing your partner does take time to learn and practice but it is possible for everybody to learn. You will have to think out of the box of what the average dancers are willing to do, but I think that is what champions do.
 Wink

DSV
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Edward Teller
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« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2012, 02:57:38 AM »

I must say, it's quite amazing how many folks I run into are not interested in what champions do.  They want to only do what they think is right.  Most of the folks in my city are so frustrated but stubbornly refuse to try a different path.  They just keep doing the same thing for years on end, throwing thousands of dollars at it, expecting different results.  They refuse to take lessons from anyone with pedigree. 

There is a change happening 'though.  There are a few Body Schoolers who started about 11 months ago turning heads in the city, making people question what they think they know.  Exciting times. 
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elisedance
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ee


« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2012, 05:38:13 AM »

I must say, it's quite amazing how many folks I run into are not interested in what champions do.  They want to only do what they think is right.  Most of the folks in my city are so frustrated but stubbornly refuse to try a different path.  They just keep doing the same thing for years on end, throwing thousands of dollars at it, expecting different results.  They refuse to take lessons from anyone with pedigree. 

There is a change happening 'though.  There are a few Body Schoolers who started about 11 months ago turning heads in the city, making people question what they think they know.  Exciting times. 
Great to hear - I hope you direct them all here Smiley
hear here!
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« Reply #13 on: August 07, 2012, 06:50:07 AM »

I would love to find someone who teaches that here. but will have to wait for the instructional video and book! I hope that is still in the pipeline
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #14 on: August 07, 2012, 10:50:47 PM »

I must say, it's quite amazing how many folks I run into are not interested in what champions do.  They want to only do what they think is right.  Most of the folks in my city are so frustrated but stubbornly refuse to try a different path.  They just keep doing the same thing for years on end, throwing thousands of dollars at it, expecting different results.  They refuse to take lessons from anyone with pedigree. 

There is a change happening 'though.  There are a few Body Schoolers who started about 11 months ago turning heads in the city, making people question what they think they know.  Exciting times. 

I think Einstein said that doing the same over and over and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity. Doing the same over and over sure sounds like insanity to me…

I am glad that the people in your city in turning head and asking questions of the Body School dancers. I think that is how big change happens.

DSV
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"As we understand more things, everthing is becoming simpler"

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