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| | | |-+  How do you move (swing dances)?
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Author Topic: How do you move (swing dances)?  (Read 8582 times)
elisedance
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ee


« on: April 23, 2009, 09:47:43 AM »

It may seem a dumb question at first - but how DO we move in ballroom? 

To answer that question we have to go back to how do we move normally - on our legs that is!  Going from standing to walkng we bend our hips knees and ankles slightly so that our center of gravity is transferred forward, towards the front of our feet and the body starts to fall forward and then we swing the leg forward so that we land on it and then collect our wieght. 

Tipping forward is NOT loosing ballance - are in perfect ballance - we are never in danger of falling or lurching to the side - but go from a static ballance to a dynamic (moving) one.  Note, that humans can walk almost indefinitely - it is one of the easiest things that we do - our entire body, from the waist down seems to be designed for it.  Running is harder but walking is well, like taking a stroll.  The

The same should be true of ballroom dancing.  You should feel no more tired after a side of foxtrot than if you had walked the same distance.  If you are not (and I fear this is true for 99% of us) you have room for improvement.  The key is to transfer your weight from stable point to next stable point [transfer YOUR weight, not your partners and not to a point that you think your partner wants you at (believe it or not) but to a point where you are stable.  Oddly enough in most cases (where you are doing the steps correctly) that will also be the point where they are stable] using only those muscles essential for the job. 

And here we have to digress to muscles.  You can bend your knee by tensing all the muscles at the same time -  try it.  The result is to give you very controlled motion but at the cost of freedom of movement and energy - it take a lot more energy to contract one muscle if the other one is fighting it.  You can also bend your leg by relaxing the muscles that are opposite to the ones you are actually moving with.  the result is a free action and a very low consumption of energy.  that is what we are after - and that is what coaches mean when they say 'swing the leg' - extend the leg without fighting it.  its worth practising this with your feet off the floor. Sit on a high stool and contract everything then compare that with just swinging your leg - you can put your hand on the opposite muscles and you wil find that they are totally relaxed.

This is getting long so I will continue at a later time.....
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2009, 12:25:32 AM »

How does a baby move....as that is our first attempt of movement, maybe it would be an idea to study a baby to find the answer? 


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Edward Teller
elisedance
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« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2009, 06:32:06 AM »

hmmm.. a baby crawls accross the floor - that could be a novel partnerdance  Smiley
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« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2009, 05:55:29 PM »

I am talking even before crawling  where do the move from??  Wink
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Edward Teller
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« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2009, 07:10:55 PM »

This is interesting. I've always taught my students that dancing forward should be as natural a movement as walking forward, since the mechanics are pretty much the same and when you walk you are already perfectly balanced. So i understand what you are saying here.
Having said that, the opposite of this, moving backwards, is an unnatural motion. so how does one apply this to backwards movement?
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Vagabond
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« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2009, 10:53:29 PM »

Quote
where do the move from??

We move from a desire to travel.
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2009, 11:03:25 PM »

This is interesting. I've always taught my students that dancing forward should be as natural a movement as walking forward, since the mechanics are pretty much the same and when you walk you are already perfectly balanced. So i understand what you are saying here.
Having said that, the opposite of this, moving backwards, is an unnatural motion. so how does one apply this to backwards movement?

Good to hear that you understand the walking part, great now onto the backward movement.  Smiley

How is a child taught to get down a flight of stairs? How about sitting down? Doesn't a baby learning to walk, sit down when their fall of balance backward?

If you want to get on the fast track of learning to dance then getting in the child’s/baby’s mindset can help you a lot. Think about it, from a baby first stands up until the baby can walk only takes a few months. They fall down an average 264 times.

How many times have you done a Natural Turn…. a Feather Step…. a Rumba Walk or a Cha-Cha Lock?

I am sure more then 264 times…. Wink
« Last Edit: April 26, 2009, 11:12:05 PM by Dora-Satya Veda » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2009, 11:24:16 PM »

There is a difference; a child will start moving with straight legs and stiff limbs, it will have to discover the functionality of the joints in the ankle and knee. Adults know about this functionality but are often restrained from transferring new movements (hip twists etc) from the brain to the mobility centre (legs, knees, hips, ankles) This can be observed in a funny way in the Japanese version (original) of shall we dance.
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skipper
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« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2009, 01:32:26 PM »

For swing dances, I always imagine a string of pearls being held with your fingertips--that s the top (your head)--as the pearls bgin moving, the lower half always swings more (hips) ---the feet just catch the weight and then go again!

Also picture a child on a swing set---there is your answer--hips swing --head tips--but is always in a vertical line.
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elisedance
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« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2009, 01:57:22 PM »

Ah Doh! the child - not the swing itself.  Thats the illusion I was missing.  Now I get it.
Still working on the pearls ...
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

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« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2009, 08:33:26 PM »

Ah Doh! the child - not the swing itself.  Thats the illusion I was missing.  Now I get it.
Still working on the pearls ...

You should be the pearls
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Edward Teller
elisedance
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ee


« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2009, 09:30:17 PM »

of course I'm already the pearls...
its just how I am Wink

but if I am the pearls, then my body moves relative to my head but I feel it the other way round... my head moves at the end of my spine...
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

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SwingWaltz
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« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2009, 09:58:07 PM »

Having said that, the opposite of this, moving backwards, is an unnatural motion. so how does one apply this to backwards movement?

I've been taught that when you are moving backwards, think of moving foward but just take your legs back instead.
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #13 on: May 12, 2009, 10:03:48 PM »

of course I'm already the pearls...
its just how I am Wink

but if I am the pearls, then my body moves relative to my head but I feel it the other way round... my head moves at the end of my spine...


I agree you are already the beautiful pearls.  Smiley

Well, actually you have two sets of strings of pearls. There is one that is only yours and then there is one that you share with the man. Your individual pearls are illustrated from just above your head to the bottom of your sternum. The shared pearls are the man’s head and rib cage to and including your hips. Your hips are the bottom pearl and therefore have the biggest radius of all the pearl swings. The two row of pearls are swinging separate of one another but are connected at the bottom of the sternum.

Have fun swinging your pearls. Wink Grin

Dora-Satya Veda
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"As we understand more things, everthing is becoming simpler"

Edward Teller
elisedance
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« Reply #14 on: May 12, 2009, 10:14:17 PM »

this is going to take some figuring out - probably with vector mathematics...
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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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