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Author Topic: Arm/shoulder opposition to leg movement  (Read 1071 times)
cornutt
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« on: July 16, 2009, 09:23:42 PM »

Had another lesson today in which we spent some time on doing backwards steps in waltz.  And it brought back an old issue for me -- when walking, particularly backwards, my arms do not naturally move in synchronized opposition with my legs.  So when I'm asked to do it, I have to think about it, and it's very hard to keep together for any length of time.  Am I the only one that has this problem?  It makes certain aspects of stepping in smooth very awkward for me. 

What makes it worse is that it's hard to duplicate my natural walking motion when I'm conscious of it.  I finally managed to do it for a while a couple of months ago, and what I found is: My arms do move when I'm walking -- but they don't move in sync with my legs.  Actually, it's almost like there's some kind of quasi-chaotic resonance thing going on; they move faster for a while, then slower, then faster, etc.  It was really weird to realize that I was doing that. 
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elisedance
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« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2009, 09:40:48 PM »

what an interesting observation C.  Its the difference I guess between walking and marching.  I think there is an out-of-phase thing going on, more like a horse galloping than trotting, if you are a horse person Smiley
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Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2009, 12:48:08 AM »

It might help to tape your walk and then play it backward in slow motion.

You might also consider to meet up with somebody that teach the walking idea (like TD or SG).

I am sure you will soon find a way to solve the problem.
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"As we understand more things, everthing is becoming simpler"

Edward Teller
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« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2009, 01:43:12 AM »

Is that like practising contra body movement/position?
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TangoDancer
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« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2009, 07:19:16 AM »

The arms do what they do because of the reaction of the body to the movement of the legs. Do not focus on the arms. When walking, we know that we have to use the adductors to bring the legs together in what I call the button method (1- upper thighs, 2- above the knees, 3- ankles). If you do this slowly, you will feel that the body wants to rotate respectively to accommodate the movement. The arms are merely an extension of this rotation... what the body does as a form of balancinig.

Care to note that when practicing this, one never inacts both sides. We inact one side... the other reacts to the impulse of the other, much like a playground swing returns with an equal reaction to an intial push. Bonne chance.
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The most beautiful part of the dance is often found in between the steps... and in the movement within the stillness.
Dora-Satya Veda
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« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2009, 11:43:41 AM »

The arms do what they do because of the reaction of the body to the movement of the legs. Do not focus on the arms. When walking, we know that we have to use the adductors to bring the legs together in what I call the button method (1- upper thighs, 2- above the knees, 3- ankles). If you do this slowly, you will feel that the body wants to rotate respectively to accommodate the movement. The arms are merely an extension of this rotation... what the body does as a form of balancinig.

Care to note that when practicing this, one never inacts both sides. We inact one side... the other reacts to the impulse of the other, much like a playground swing returns with an equal reaction to an intial push. Bonne chance.

Very well put, TD. I was wondering how to say what you just said in a simple manner. You did it just perfect. Thank you for clarifying it like that. Seems like we are supplementing each other very well here!  Wink

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

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cornutt
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« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2009, 09:21:59 PM »

Care to note that when practicing this, one never inacts both sides. We inact one side... the other reacts to the impulse of the other, much like a playground swing returns with an equal reaction to an intial push. Bonne chance.

This makes a lot of sense.  It explains why the swing of my arms doesn't sync with the movement of my legs.  It's sort of like trying to solve the three-body orbit problem.   Shocked  Has anyone else notice this about their natural walk? 

Another amusing bit: We have to wear badges at work.  I usually wear mine on a lanyard around my neck.  Sometimes when I'm walking briskly, it will start swinging back and forth -- but the swing isn't in sync with my legs, and the amplitude of the swing increases and decreases seemingly at random.
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TangoDancer
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« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2009, 01:49:28 AM »

Another amusing bit: We have to wear badges at work.  I usually wear mine on a lanyard around my neck.  Sometimes when I'm walking briskly, it will start swinging back and forth -- but the swing isn't in sync with my legs, and the amplitude of the swing increases and decreases seemingly at random.

Actually, this isn't odd at all. My former post explains this. Since teh badge is hanging around the neck, it is getting its impulse from the body, and not from the legs. You may walk briskly/slowly, and the body is going to rotate in a normal, correcting, contra fashion 'after' the step/s. The quicker you walk, the quicker the body corrects its balance, and the quicker the badge swings... in the direction of the body swing, NOT the leg swing.
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The most beautiful part of the dance is often found in between the steps... and in the movement within the stillness.
Sarosh
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« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2009, 07:53:21 PM »

LOL, no, you are not the only one who has this issue.  I have had many students go through the same thing....just keep at it...you are in good company.....S
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