Changing routines

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by jiwinco, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. jiwinco

    jiwinco Member

    Sorry, I couldn't find this question in my search, so please merge if it already exists.

    For those of you pro/am folks, how often do you change your routines. I have had the same ones for a few years now and I am bored and want a change.

    I am just wondering how often others change their routines.

    Thanks!
  2. tanya_the_dancer

    tanya_the_dancer Well-Known Member

    Wouldn't that depend on your teacher? Especially if you're a lady, you have to follow whatever he leads. Right now my routines are evolving, since I've recently moved up to open standard and gold smooth, so we can dance pretty much whatever we please.

    My silver routines changed a few times, too, as I got better. I don't remember them being carved in stone during those 5-6 years I spent in silver. Besides, I don't remember ever being able to dance it as it was written down due to traffic, floor size, etc.
  3. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    Usually, just about the time you are getting bored is when u are just beginning to internalize them. At this point, changing them will not advance your dancing but applying technique to the boring routines certainly will..
    debmc likes this.
  4. latingal

    latingal Moderator Staff Member

    My pro-am open routines do not change very often - maybe I'll get a couple of new routines (we don't change all 5) after two or three years. We do however, "re-tool" small portions of routines almost every year.
  5. singndance

    singndance Well-Known Member

    My pro just changed most of our open routines after about two years of dancing open pro-am American style. Many of the same elements from my former routines are included, but with more intricate rhythm patterns and in a less predictable order. He advised me that we will introduce the new routines one at a time as they are ready, not all at once. But I have found that the routines are constantly tweaked on the advice of trusted coaches. So we have a new framework but I expect that portions will be changed as necessary. He believes in doing basic routines for a long time with excellent technique, so I don't expect these will be totally updated for another two to three years.
    Miss Silly and Larinda McRaven like this.
  6. Mengu

    Mengu Active Member

    I do very little pro-am, but use the same routines for am-am and pro-am. We changed/added to some of our gold routines about 3 months ago, we had been dancing them for about 2 years (though some have seen revision here and there in that time). We had gotten bored, and there were some silver steps we weren't doing, that I wanted to add in, to keep them fresh, and not get rusty.

    We just changed our foxtrot routine a bit today. Our instructor said she really liked the flow of one of our groups, and wanted to move it up toward the front or middle of our routine, rather than in the 6th line. So we went to work, and now our routine is slightly different, and I like it even more.

    Keeps things fresh, keeps the mind working, I think change every now and then is good, at least for me. Just not too frequently.
  7. jerseydancer

    jerseydancer Active Member

    We always make small adjustments here and there, but the drastic changes are done when our teacher says: it is time to change this, you are ready for more challenge
  8. bia

    bia Active Member

    Obviously it's different once you're dancing open, but for us, in syllabus, changes in routines are tied to changes in level, and that takes however long it takes. So we'll start with a routine at one level and use it both at that level and the next higher one. Once that's going respectably at the lower level, we'll get a few of the higher level steps to include when competing at that level. Once we're placing well at the lower level, we'll get full routines appropriate for the higher level and compete with different routines at each level until we either point out of the lower level or otherwise have reason to move up. And then start over.
  9. dbk

    dbk Well-Known Member

    I do am/am, but I don't change routines that often (or ever, really). What I DO change is little bits that aren't working - as our dancing evolves and gets better, we outgrow little parts of the routine, it becomes apparent that certain parts don't work or don't match our personal style, etc.

    Aside from adding tricks, the basic movements of one routines are going to be the same as any other routine. A forward step is a forward step; a spin is a spin; shadow is shadow. When you start getting bored, IMO, it's not time to rearrange where you do those basic parts (i.e. get a new routine). That's when you add new technique on top of what you're already doing.

    Of course, that's assuming you're doing pro/am at the open level. A few years doing the same routine at a syllabus level doesn't sound right at all.
  10. JANATHOME

    JANATHOME Well-Known Member

    Ya know, I think as the am of a pro/am it is perfectly "ok" for us to have input on our routines.

    Some time ago I asked the pro to put a wing in our international. Prior, dancing this figure with husband as am/am I always had a problem with it and I thought now dancing with pro it was a good learning opportunity... He was fine with it.... Sure I don't request a full routine change, but if there is something I would like to learn I will ask if there is a way to fit it into our present routine.

    Recently after dancing OSB we realized I was having a horrible time with our foxtrot opening and even before we left pro said ...we are changing this....

    We have been dancing the same routines coming up 3 years and I still have a lot to learn and have not yet felt bored or unchallenged.
  11. debmc

    debmc Well-Known Member

    On that same note, does your pro have the same open routines for all his students? I see some who do, and some who actually have different open routines for different students which seems to me as if it would be difficult to keep track of.
  12. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    Sweet statement! Gonna use this as my signature line :)
    dbk likes this.
  13. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    I had the same structure for all of my pro-am routines, newcomer through open. Yet each one gets tweaked to enhance each students strengths. And especially in gold/open. entire chunks go missing or get changed and replaced, by the end of a few years with an open routine, they only vaguely resemble the routine they started out as.
  14. vit

    vit Active Member

    I like this one also

    Larinda McRaven likes this.
  15. Jananananana

    Jananananana Active Member

    Agree - our routines also don't change. Rather they evolve. Actually, I hate getting new routines. Sometimes, we scrap a routine completely only to find that the "new" routine is actually our old routine with segments timed differently.
  16. singndance

    singndance Well-Known Member

    He has totally different routines for his open students, geared towards their strengths and abilities. His "A" student routines are a far cry more difficult than mine.

    There was only one time he led me into another student's routine during a comp. Thank goodness I am a pretty good follow and he is great a giving instruction on the floor.
  17. debmc

    debmc Well-Known Member

    I am always amazed at a pro's ability to remember several different routines at once. My brief intro into open was so challenging to remember my own choreography, I can't imagine having to remember 20 different students choreo!
  18. jiwinco

    jiwinco Member

    Thank you for the input. I guess this is where I was going. I have strengths and weaknesses like everyone and I would like my routines to show my strengths. I want to show the judges my best side and work on my weaknesses in the studio. There were parts of the old routine where I could hear the correction for a move before we got there..(weak spots and constant similar correction that I can't seem to master) it made me look unsure in competition which is not flattering. I want to look confident! Hence my issue with the old routines.

    Also amazed at my pro's ability to remember everyone's routine... they are all pretty different.
  19. jiwinco

    jiwinco Member

    I am at the silver syllabus level, not open... and it is the "tricky" moves that are more open than silver that causes me to struggle.. I work very hard at the technique for basics. As I mentioned in the previous post I am not looking to rearrange basic steps, just show my best side on the competition floor... take out the things that I really struggle with. Make the combinations more flattering for my skills.
  20. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    as an am one year i danced at a local event( no entry rules lol) with 5 girls from closed bronze to open gold only one was a pro rest were friends all 4 styles 30 plus different routines 3 showdances

    WHEW!! i admire my pros sooo much more after that experience

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