Ballroom Dance > 10 Commandments for Leaders

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by DanceMentor, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. Siggav

    Siggav Active Member

    I don't like the "don't think" and "turn your brain off" comments in regards to following, following is a very active thing to do that requires a lot of learning to do well. You're not planning ahead but you can absolutely think.

    Also often when social dancing you'll have a much more enjoyable dance if you do a little bit of helping when following i.e. something isn't lead perfectly but it's enough so that you can figure out what was meant in the time given but if you were only sat on pure "honest" following you wouldn't do the pattern or whatever it is. Lessons is different but social dancing is done for fun, it's not a lesson so maximum enjoyment for both parties is something that has value vs. trying to be a total stickler for technique from everyone.
    chomsky and hereKittyKitty like this.
  2. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    yes, of course I am ONLY talking about guessing after I have some sort of cue....beforehand would just be silly

    yes ...of course

    there is a way to think and a way not to think...certainly one should not anticipate before a cue, but yes, interpretation is is an educated guess

    I don't really count group class because everyone knows what is being to closing eyes; whether my eyes are closed or not, I am interpreting what I feel...after the cue.... whether or not it is a good or bad cue

    I respectfully disagree with you on this as my exprerience tells me otherwise

    again, I don't anticipate, but I respond with a more or less certain response depending upon his skill...I would certainly not debate dancing off time with a man...happy to do to advising men or stopping, on a private lesson; no problem; on a group; only if asked; socially; no way...but again I never ever implied anticipating...I have always been talking about how I respond AFTER what ever he thinks is a lead has occurred
  3. regis

    regis Active Member

    Make up your mind ahead of time!
    No manhandling!
  4. Warren J. Dew

    Warren J. Dew Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately, this is a Catch-22 situation: the leader can provide a really good lead only if the follower is trusting him.
    Dr Dance likes this.
  5. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I think at high levels of skill that is true...I think in most of the rest of the situations in the dance world the lady trusts then learns to be higher levels, she's cautious then learns to trust.....

    at any rate, I didn't intend any of this to go into a long tangent...I stated what I thought should be a rule ...which I think I have explained as well as I can....and, not to be snarky at all, but it is fine if people (not surprisingly all of them leads) don't agree... I still stand by it as a follow...
  6. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    don't complain about my balance...I am as stable as you are in heels like yours...and when I am in charge of deciding what I am doing and where I am going at what time
    samina likes this.
  7. Terpsichorean Clod

    Terpsichorean Clod Well-Known Member

    We're going to have to do something about that. ;)
  8. Purr

    Purr Well-Known Member

    True. However, I would add that assumes the follow has received "some sort of cue" from the leader.
    j_alexandra, cornutt and fascination like this.
  9. Purr

    Purr Well-Known Member

    I don't agree with this. There's going to be hell to pay to a leader who hurts my back by trying to dip me or god forbid dump me on the floor. This line of thinking sounds like to me that everything that goes wrong with the dance is the follow's fault.
  10. DanceMentor

    DanceMentor Administrator

    Wow, this thread has exploded. I hope maybe we can assemble some of the best answers and then I'll get someone to make an infographic for us. Judging by the latest dialogue, I'm not sure we can do it democratically. :)
  11. clumsy fellow

    clumsy fellow Active Member


    ... Just playing.
  12. clumsy fellow

    clumsy fellow Active Member

    Give her a lead that she can trust and you will be greatly rewarded...

    (Hmmm... sounds more like a fortune cookie.)
    j_alexandra, Purr and IndyLady like this.
  13. nikkitta

    nikkitta Well-Known Member bed

    middy and cornutt like this.
  14. cornutt

    cornutt Well-Known Member

    I know that this isn't what you meant, but I try to avoid using the word "cue" to describe leading (except maybe apart visual leading). My theory is that leads should usually be obvious; the follow shouldn't have to memorize a bunch of "when I do this, you do this" things.
  15. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    speaking only for myself, I used the term cue because sometimes, socially, a woman has to settle for whatever information she can get in whatever form she is able to get it, visual, auditory, or feel
  16. Dr Dance

    Dr Dance Well-Known Member

    I do not believe that is what I said. Skillful followers can better avoid trouble, that's all. Please don't make dancing a "blame game." Finding fault is a dangerous course. Better to find solutions than issues.
  17. LT

    LT Member

    If injury is likely, probably the best course IS outright refusal... any kind of fight analogy doesn't really work for me, because in such an instance you are looking to avoid or counter the opponent's action, not help him accomplish it. :punch:

    I am much better able to recover from a mis-step or stumble if my partner has maintained tone, groundedness and independent position...

    WTH... :eek: How? By breaking his fall? The dance starts with an invitation and an acceptance... but it continues with a continuous ribbon of invitations... Having had the initial invitation accepted, the lead should continue to lead with the confident expectation that invitations that follow will also be accepted, but he should never insist, and the follow has the right to decline at any point. I think the follow should decline if she through her own tone and grounding identifies unsafe or reckless leads. No one should be accidentally thrown to the ground. FWIW.
    chomsky and stash like this.
  18. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member all are coming off as pontificating a bit and also as negating an awful lot of the experience of people who follow more than you, you may find yourself irking some folks
  19. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    not myself...(yet ) :)
    Dr Dance likes this.
  20. Dr Dance

    Dr Dance Well-Known Member

    I don't intend to "negate" others' experiences. My experiences have been different than many others. Does this make me right or wrong? Or does this simply offer another view? Although I'm an unabashed mansplainer, I don't for a second believe that my way is always correct. Your experiences have led you to slightly different ideas about lead and follow. Like you, I don't think that we're far off in our beliefs about this issue. Further posts have clarified this as we've each expounded upon our position. I had difficulty wrapping my mind around your use of "guess," but now I think that I understand better.

    Every teacher of dance emphasizes technique slightly differently. They may use different terminology, but all of my many teachers have been consistent with each other. I've NEVER encountered contradiction between one teacher and another. (Thank goodness!)

    By the way, that teacher who chastised his female student to "Turn off her brain" when following is no longer teaching that student. She changed teachers. And she is doing great!! Mayhaps I should take a cue from this incident to tone back my "pontifications."

    Donations are not encouraged, but will not be refused. :lol:

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