Country and Western > Beginners questions about competing: UCWDA

Discussion in 'Country and Western' started by b19wh33l5, Sep 3, 2006.

  1. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Go back up three posts . . .
  2. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Ahh. Yeah. Sorry I'm such a lazy cow when it comes to forum post reading.

    Hmm. Harrisburg.
  3. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    I hear ya' . . . me too! Nothing I hate (as a mod) worse! Love the job (when I can do it) though!!! Nothing like keeping youngters in line . . . online, and kicking them off when it becomes necessary to do so!
  4. b19wh33l5

    b19wh33l5 Member

    For my West Coast Swing I just finished a 6 week group class 2 weeks ago that went over all 6 of the basics. So I feel pretty confident in my basic footwork right now. These past few weeks I have taken some time to find tune some variations to the basic like spinning left side passes, whips with outside turns, simple patterns with swivels, etc... things that I know I can lead real well that are not that hard yet make my style more than just vanilla.

    Two step is my better dance. I have been experimenting with a bunch of different spinning and weaving patterns and trying to flow them all together smoothly. This week I will finalize my decisions on which things I think I can lead well and fit smoothly together so I can really fine tune them before "game time" as well. I have been told time and time again that it doesn't matter how complicated my moves are, it is how well I can perform the things I do know. So I am really trying to take that to heart here.

    So I think I am really close to being as ready as I will ever be for Harrisburg. I am not sure what other things people normally do to prepare since this is my first comp. If you guys have any tips I am all ears!
  5. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Sounds like you're on your way to a great competition . . .
    -the spinning left side passes look great in addition to a standard left side pass, which BTW can be done slowly or in a very quick move . . . and you can lead your follow into a ronde' off of a left side pass that the two of you can do together . . . ask your instructor to show you these. If you are doing left side passes with multiple spins, you are ready for these too!

    -the whip with outside turns . . . two turns, right???

    -not all follows will get those swivels. Try one or two, if they don't get it, come right out of it.

    Remember to dance with as many followers you can right before your competition . . . the ones that have numbers on their back already . . . you just may get one of them as a J&J partner. Look for anyone of them who is sitting down . . . short, tall, young, old, etc.

    Finally, you must look good, so dress well. You must look like you are having fun, so smile, and remind her to. You must also stay on beat, have a connection, and look into her eyes (part of the connection). Do your footwork, lead and dance at the level of your partner. Dance with high-intensity, and you can showoff . . . just a little! Remember that a boring technicla is supposed to outscore stuff that is showy . . . SUPPOSED TO!

    Do some rhythm changes, some struts - walk (strut) through 8 steps - turning between 4&5, change the slot and then back again . . .

    These are some things you can do, but don't have to.

    Good luck . . . make sure you post how you do.

    Lastly, remember the judges judge you on some of the things above, and some of their scoring goes to what they like to see. So, if you don't place in first overall, or even in the top five, or maybe even dead last . . . don't quit . . . you'll get there soon enough!!!
  6. b19wh33l5

    b19wh33l5 Member

    I do like doing the spinning pass. I spice it up a bit by doing swivels on 1 2 then starting the spin on 3. I have not worked with speeding up or slowing down the spin though. I am not sure if I have ever seen that done. I will have to keep my eyes open at the comp to see what people are doing there.

    Of course!

    Yeah, I do tend to find this to be true. The one swivel pattern I do that is almost full proof though is when I tuck turn into hammer lock position and do the swivels from there. Most follows that I have danced with that have any clue seem to be able to follow that.

    Not a problem! I will be very excited and want to dance a lot anyway. My plan is do a lot of this and see what people there tend to be able to follow so I will know what I can and can't do during the J&J's.

    For the west coast swing I was thinking about wearing a pair of slacks with a tucked-in button-up long sleeve shirt, belt, and black dress shoes. For the two step, my black jeans with a tucked-in button-up long sleeve shirt, belt, my cowboy boots, and possibly my cowboy hat. I talked to the coordinators and they said there was no dress code for the J&J's, but like you said, it never hurts to look nice when some things are subjectively based.

    I will let you all know how I did as soon as I can get my hands on a computer again. You all have been a big help and I appeciate it. I looking forward to having a lot of fun at this comp and since it is my first I will not be heart-broken if I come in dead last. My goal is to at least make the finals, but like I said before, I realize I have not been dancing long at all and I have a lot to learn.
  7. b19wh33l5

    b19wh33l5 Member

    I just got back from Halloween in Harrisburg a few hours ago and my intro the competitive dance world went well. Unfortunatly I was the only lead that entered the novice two step and there was only one follow that entered as well. We still got our chance to dance (by ourselves) in front of everyone and win the prize money, but taking 1st place obviously doesn't mean very much when there is no one to compete against, lol. None the less it was still fun and the people clapped for us. Luckly the WCS J&J had 4 leads and 4 follows that entered. So we were randomly paired off and were judged on how we danced to a slow and a quick WCS song with that person. I ended up taking 2nd place based on those marks. So my entire competing experience was pretty short, but I had a lot of fun in the process and learned a few things.
  8. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member


    Don't put too much on where you placed . . . it was short . . . it was fun . . . if you hadn't done either dance, you wouldn't have "won anything!"

    Now you know what it feels like to dance in competition instead of sitting in a chair watching others. Didn't it feel great as you walked off the floor??? That applause was for you . . .

    Your head is in the right place . . . if you keep competiting as often as you can . . . you'll be competiting in the Intermediate level before you know it. You might as well find a Pro and do some Pro Am . . . cause it sounds like you're hooked. Keep remembering about "the fun" part . . . never, ever let go of that!!!

    Welcome aboard!!! You are going to go far . . .
  9. b19wh33l5

    b19wh33l5 Member


    The entire experience was a HUGE rush for me, especially the actual dancing part. Knowing that other people were watching me, that I was being judged, that I had to remember things like propper footwork and smiling. It is an absolute thrill for me.

    Yeah, I think there is a pretty good chance I am hooked now. Doing Pro Am's looks like fun, but I have never even taken a private lesson in the time I have been dancing yet. How do I go about finding Pro's to do this stuff with, preferably close to me?
  10. Dancelf

    Dancelf Member

    Failing anything else, ask event organizers. I'd expect the folks at Cash Bash to know who's available around Pittsburgh. Or the folks in Harrisburg, after they've had a chance to recover from their event.
  11. wcsjon

    wcsjon New Member

    I see you've already done one, but just as info......
    From my experience, I've only been to 2 competitions that actually required hat and boots for two-step jack and jill. I hear talk that this is supposed to be more strict, but who knows?
    My advice for winning a Jack-and-Jill.........
    Have 2 or 3 really big moves that you can do with any partner (this goes for the leader of course). Do those moves in front of your friends, they will make the most noise and get the judges attention for you. In 2-step, don't EVER cut across the floor. Same with WCS, stay in your area. Don't try to do the move you just learned that day in a workshop, even if you drew a partner that was in the workshop, new moves look..........well, new, until you get used to them. No matter who you draw as a partner, meet them with a big hug, that makes them relax because you are happy to dance with them.
    I don't wanna sound like a know it all, I'm just trying to help. :)
    If you wonder if it works...hehe
    '01 intermediate two-step and wcs jack-and-jill champion at UCWDC worlds.
    '02 advanced two-step Jack-and-Jill Champion at UCWDC worlds.
    :) It's fun!

Share This Page