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Author Topic: Foxtrot - advanced  (Read 6647 times)
Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #30 on: May 06, 2009, 01:09:15 PM »

In this case, why be careful?  It seems to me it got you exactly where you want to be Smiley

The concept of 'swing' is not trivial since, I think, we tend to learn that dancing is effort where as swing is anything but - its really what happens after effort - or even a way to relax after expending energy: indeed, swing has more to do with relaxation than with force....

 I didn't want to become a dance teacher/coach in any way or form. I had other plans and none of them included dance. I guess that is why I do so many other things. I wanted dancing to be a hobby and not a living. I am glad that dancing has again taken a back seat to what I do for a living. When dancing was my living I started hating it and hate all it stood for. I backed out of dancing and came back after a 5 years of none dancing. While out of dancing I developed a conscious awareness of the concept “wish for” and was able to direct it more clearly. If my dance mother and ex-partner had not asked me to come back, I probable never would have. Oh well, I am enjoying the hobby of dance now.

I feel dancing is relaxing, actually very relaxing (probably why I came back). When I feel uptight, stressed and muscle tension, I will dance some swing steps as that makes my body total relax. I feel more relaxed dancing then sitting on a chair. I was always told by all my teachers that true dancing should feel like a stroll in the park, if it is harder then that, then you are working too much.
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Edward Teller
elisedance
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ee


« Reply #31 on: May 06, 2009, 01:57:16 PM »

Hmmm... I suspect that achieving 'a stroll in the park' requires quite a fit body though - way more fit than a stroll in the park, if you understand what I mean Wink
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #32 on: May 06, 2009, 02:41:21 PM »

Hmmm... I suspect that achieving 'a stroll in the park' requires quite a fit body though - way more fit than a stroll in the park, if you understand what I mean Wink

Actually no!!

When I competed we use to be tested for our fitness number (not sure this is the right word for it) every three month. When I was an amateur and only making the 48, my fitness number really high! When I turned professional my number started dropping really fast. My second year as a pro, two weeks before the British Open (in Blackpool) my number was taken and it was at the lowest I had ever had it. The doctor told me that he was not sure how I was going to make more then two rounds with that number. I told him that I had tools in my back that made me very efficient. Well, I had my best result ever. When I got back to have my next test done again the doctor said, that he didn’t understand how it was possible for me to get that far with that low a fitness number. He said that the tools that I had/have must truly be a secret. I could only tell him that it was true only very few knew/know of this tool.

If you ever go to Blackpool, have a look at the pros, when they came off the floor. I tell you many of them can hardly get off the floor before they have a cigarette in their mouth. Now does that mean they are fit….well, you tell me….I don’t think so.

I know I probably shouldn’t say this….but many dancers used to drink a pint of beer before competing as a way to get relaxed enough to use the tools of great dancing. The biggest challenge is to get relaxed enough to do it. 
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elisedance
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« Reply #33 on: May 06, 2009, 03:40:49 PM »

...I think that - relaxing for great dancing - should be a new thread for this board ....
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Some guy
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« Reply #34 on: May 07, 2009, 03:18:36 AM »

I feel dancing is relaxing, actually very relaxing (probably why I came back). When I feel uptight, stressed and muscle tension, I will dance some swing steps as that makes my body total relax. I feel more relaxed dancing then sitting on a chair.

This is really interesting.  My recent experience has been that dancing is more relaxing that even walking (!).  My muscles start to get tight after a long period on my feet.  However, when I get back home, I do a few small natural turns and it relaxes every muscle in the body and stretches me out.  Quite amazing.  Dancing feels more natural that walking or standing (!). 
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elisedance
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« Reply #35 on: May 07, 2009, 05:25:56 AM »

Hmmm... I suspect that achieving 'a stroll in the park' requires quite a fit body though - way more fit than a stroll in the park, if you understand what I mean Wink

Actually no!!

When I competed we use to be tested for our fitness number (not sure this is the right word for it) every three month. When I was an amateur and only making the 48, my fitness number really high! When I turned professional my number started dropping really fast. My second year as a pro, two weeks before the British Open (in Blackpool) my number was taken and it was at the lowest I had ever had it. The doctor told me that he was not sure how I was going to make more then two rounds with that number. I told him that I had tools in my back that made me very efficient. Well, I had my best result ever. When I got back to have my next test done again the doctor said, that he didn’t understand how it was possible for me to get that far with that low a fitness number. He said that the tools that I had/have must truly be a secret. I could only tell him that it was true only very few knew/know of this tool.

If you ever go to Blackpool, have a look at the pros, when they came off the floor. I tell you many of them can hardly get off the floor before they have a cigarette in their mouth. Now does that mean they are fit….well, you tell me….I don’t think so.

I know I probably shouldn’t say this….but many dancers used to drink a pint of beer before competing as a way to get relaxed enough to use the tools of great dancing. The biggest challenge is to get relaxed enough to do it. 


I deteinitely agree that as you get better at dancing the energy expeniture gets a lot less - technique replaces force.  Indeed, that may be the most important factor to distinguish the truly gret from the great.  If you look at any of the old 'masters' (I was just reviewing richard and Janet Gleve - there are a few of them on utube) [Here they are doing a foxtrot:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=16qz3f4XI8k
its a bit upright compared to present fashions but it illustrates so well what effortless dancing looks like.  I can't help but focus on Janet and her amazingly light, nimble touch.  The two are such a success as a team they dance perfecty alone but together.]

However, there is a difference  between their style and the one currently in favor that I get the impression DOES require some strength, in particular in the legs (though correct me if I am wrong).  We talked about the feint or fall - the extend of fall has I think increased at least since R&J's time - its the next step.  'After the fall' there has to be either a maintenance of the lowered body (which I do if I am continuing to step forward) or there has to be a resurection (if you forgive the biblical illusions Smiley !  For me that step takes strength.

Lets use the reverse wave (female) as an exampel As I understand it, we fall on 1 but maintain on 2 and rise a bit on three, falling again on 1. For me at least 2 and three need leg strength.



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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #36 on: May 07, 2009, 07:44:15 AM »

This is really interesting.  My recent experience has been that dancing is more relaxing that even walking (!).  My muscles start to get tight after a long period on my feet.  However, when I get back home, I do a few small natural turns and it relaxes every muscle in the body and stretches me out.  Quite amazing.  Dancing feels more natural that walking or standing (!). 

I must admit I totally agree with you. I have found Dance "walking" is more relaxing then walking. I do feel quit a bit more stress in my muscles when standing still or when walking normally. When I feel stressed I do just that, dance a few steps and my body is back to normal.
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« Reply #37 on: May 07, 2009, 11:09:22 AM »


I must admit I totally agree with you. I have found Dance "walking" is more relaxing then walking. I do feel quit a bit more stress in my muscles when standing still or when walking normally. When I feel stressed I do just that, dance a few steps and my body is back to normal.

Could this be a question of posture, though?  I was talking about this with my instructor the other day.  When we're dancing, we have a pretty even engagement of muscles through the torso and limbs and all of the applied forces are very balanced.  When we're just walking around, this is usually not true; our balance is less than perfect and some muscles are doing a lot more work than others.  We all developed our walking/running habits well before we knew any better.  Plus our bodies weren't mature then, and we develped various adaptations to compensate as we grew, and a great many of these adaptations were considerably less than optimal. 

My instructor has pointed out some bad habits in my walking that I had to fix when I started dancing.  In particular, I walk with a very still torso and almost no oppositional motion.  Normal people don't walk that way.   Cheesy  The whole concept of conta-body motion struck me as perverse when I was a beginner.  It took me a long time to understand its purpose.  Anyway, the point is that when we are dancing, we are using and supporting our bodies in a far more optimal manner than when we are just walking around -- we have to, in order to do all of the things that we do in dance. 
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elisedance
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« Reply #38 on: May 07, 2009, 01:03:31 PM »

interesting - so the answer is that in order to go from A to B we should foxtrot and not walk? Smiley
Works for me... I just need a permanently available partner outside my door....
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dream a little dream
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« Reply #39 on: May 07, 2009, 01:05:35 PM »

I am so looking forward when this thread makes sense for me!
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Some guy
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« Reply #40 on: May 07, 2009, 04:03:46 PM »

I am so looking forward when this thread makes sense for me!

Hang in there, this is one of the greatest "aha!"  Shocked moments of all time! Smiley
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Some guy
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« Reply #41 on: May 07, 2009, 04:14:34 PM »

Lets use the reverse wave (female) as an exampel As I understand it, we fall on 1 but maintain on 2 and rise a bit on three, falling again on 1. For me at least 2 and three need leg strength.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I don't agree with you here.  What you describe is what it looks like to an observer, but I doubt that it's the action you're supposed to perform.  Since your example had a "1, 2, 3" count, but you mentioned a reverse wave, I'm going to assume you meant "Slow, Quick, Quick".   

My take on it is that when we fall on Slow maintaining the fall is going to take away the momentum that you just created.  Therefore, I believe a "rise" should immediately take place after the "fall".  However, the "rise" is stretched over and elongated over the next to Quicks kind of like the swing-set we all seem to have enjoyed as kids.  If you recall the feeling of the swing-set, the thrill of it was the fact that you went down really quickly (count Slow), then sored to the top with decreasing velocity (the two Quicks), while simultanously gaining the potential energy required to "fall" again (count Slow)... all with minimal muscular effort: mainly gravity and momentum.   

Actually, I think what we're doing today is an exaggeration of what  you saw on the Richard and Janet Gleave video.  Today the top pros do the same thing, but they slow it down and stretch it out.  Please correct me if I'm wrong!
« Last Edit: May 07, 2009, 04:21:20 PM by Some guy » Logged
Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #42 on: May 07, 2009, 10:40:22 PM »

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I don't agree with you here.

OK, let read what you have to say…..

Quote
My take on it is that when we fall on Slow maintaining the fall is going to take away the momentum that you just created.  Therefore, I believe a "rise" should immediately take place after the "fall".  However, the "rise" is stretched over and elongated over the next to Quicks kind of like the swing-set we all seem to have enjoyed as kids.  If you recall the feeling of the swing-set, the thrill of it was the fact that you went down really quickly (count Slow), then sored to the top with decreasing velocity (the two Quicks), while simultanously gaining the potential energy required to "fall" again (count Slow)... all with minimal muscular effort: mainly gravity and momentum.   

Actually, I think what we're doing today is an exaggeration of what  you saw on the Richard and Janet Gleave video.  Today the top pros do the same thing, but they slow it down and stretch it out.  Please correct me if I'm wrong!

WOW SG, I can't believe it, you got it . You have seen the light. You have found one of (if not the biggest) the biggest insights and secrets in dancing . It should have taken you years to learn and understand this, at least 10 to 20 years. You are not supposed to know this, this early on in your dancing

What you have written here is what is discussed among professional couples making semifinals and/or professionals of at least 10 - 15 years+. You have really written something very profound here. I applaud you. You have my respect. 
« Last Edit: May 07, 2009, 10:52:45 PM by Dora-Satya Veda » Logged

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Edward Teller
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« Reply #43 on: May 07, 2009, 10:45:48 PM »

awesome SG - I will try to enact that sunday... and thanks Smiley
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Some guy
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« Reply #44 on: May 08, 2009, 12:17:14 PM »

WOW SG, I can't believe it, you got it . You have seen the light. You have found one of (if not the biggest) the biggest insights and secrets in dancing . It should have taken you years to learn and understand this, at least 10 to 20 years. You are not supposed to know this, this early on in your dancing

What you have written here is what is discussed among professional couples making semifinals and/or professionals of at least 10 - 15 years+. You have really written something very profound here. I applaud you. You have my respect. 

Thank goodness!  This is one of the things I figured out with your help and yours alone Dora!  It was when you told me to "walk" to the music and use that as a foundation for all movement.  So I really dwelled on that took out any action I was doing that impeded with the feeling of "walking".  Suddenly dancing just seemed like the most natural thing to do and nothing feels more natural to me now (not even walking or standing!).  The heels, toes, contra-body movements, etc., all feel more natural to me than walking!

I had to go out on a limb to disagree with Elise because what you described Elise is what every single coach has described to me.  So one month ago I would've agreed with you whole heartedly.  However, a few weeks ago I decided to confront something that I always noticed but didn't take to heart: a contradition in my coaches' description of what they were doing versus the energy I was feeling from them when they danced.  When I finally reconciled the difference between there description and their action, it was evident that they were describing what I was seeing but not what they were doing (if that makes any sense).   

I'm still getting flak about this from my partner and coaches (and anyone else I dare try to discuss this with) even 'though my partner and coach already do this naturally.  They are very excited that my dancing has improved, but they disagree with my explanation of how I achieve my action.  So I was really surprised when I read your response Dora.   Shocked  You seem to be the only person that gets me!   Cheesy
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