Close to giving up.

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by dgarstang, May 10, 2013.

  1. dgarstang

    dgarstang Member

    So, just looking at the group classes posted for next month (tomorrow) here. I was going to continue with my intermediate 4 foxtrot, and my advanced 1 waltz. In order to help with the parties I was also going to maybe pick up beginner tango 2 (that's the only tango they have), beginner bolero 3 (which just popped up on the calendar for the first time - there was no beginner 2 last month. I've never done bolero and I have no idea if I can even do it. If I don't know the basic, slim chance), a beginner rumba 1 (yes, that's the only rumba they have), and also a second foxtrot at advanced 1. No idea why they have two foxtrot classes only 1 level apart. That's six. I think there was one more. I have no problem starting at rumba or tango from the beginning. However, if I know they're gonna drop it in a few months (even with the required attendance to keep the class going), I'm going to be really annoyed. I already know this stuff, but as I said, I like to start from the begining and build on it. Oh yes, I started doing night club two step this month but stopped after 2 classes. Night club two step is like west coast swing to me... a made up dance with no context. It was really boring me. I could try picking up that again next month, assuming missing the last two weeks hasn't put me behind to the point where I can't continue.
  2. twnkltoz

    twnkltoz Well-Known Member

    Don't have time for a complete response, but I do not suggest you do bolero 3 (or any other "2" or "3" class) without having the "1" class first. You'll only frustrate yourself, classmates, and teacher.

    Also, all dances are made up. You might find you enjoy some of them more if you let go of the mental blocks and invest yourself in them long enough to really learn to do them well.
    danceronice likes this.
  3. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    'Really annoyed?' Are you looking to #1 learn how to dance, or #2 simply fill up your evenings? If #2, you are doing everything right. if #1, you are blindly leading the blind (you) and probably will never really learn anything but a few 'steps'. Dance comes into your body differently.

    Group classes are fun and will help you, but just picking classes out of a schedule based on your (and you should admit this) limited knowledge of dance, you have no basis to critique any of this. You SHOULD be talking with a teacher who will map out a route to your dance education; you have no real basis to figure out, too, after 2 lessons in a group class, that a dance is not real with no context. Really, really, you need to invest time into your education, and be guided. You will in the short term not be 'frustrated' and either will your fellow classmates or teachers...
  4. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member

    Well, personally, I have no use for West Coast Swing either. Yes, I have been instructed in it. No, I'm not interested. So no, you may not enjoy some dances more if you just do it more. (I also always say no to salsa, NC2S, and lots of social-only dances.) There is no mandate you have to just love every single dance.

    I would NOT take bolero if you're not into rumba and can't start from the basics. I adore that dance, but it's not very socially useful and if you don't like rumba it's probably not going to be your favorite.

    How do people learn Viennese? Lessons. It is in fact tons of fun, but I can't see learning it in a group class.
    Bailamosdance likes this.
  5. Gorme

    Gorme Active Member

    Doug, I watched your foxtrot on Thursday when you danced with the instructor. It looks like you are able to move at a reasonable rate across the floor. I asked the instructor what she thinks about your dancing. She says that she was able to follow you around pretty well and that you have good movement. So keep it up. Keep going to the taxi dances and it will help with your self-confidence. She's the best you can pick on that night for any smooth/standard dances.
    TinyDancer109 and opendoor like this.
  6. dgarstang

    dgarstang Member

    Bailamosdance: "Really annoyed" because it's "really annoying" to start a class below your level, wanting to stick with it, and build on it month by month, only to find it gets dropped after a few months. There's not a whole lot of benefit to be gained from starting at, say, beginner tango 2, and have it dropped at beginner tango 4.

    Gorme: Thanks. I've been in L's foxtrot class for the past 8 months. He started doing silver patterns about two months ago. I pretty much just wanted to stick to the open left and right turns and etch those into my head first. That was one of the first times I've been able to use them. It's a shame he's taking a break and won't be doing it any more next month.

    So... based on what is on next month's calendar, here's what I've paid for so far...
    Foxtrot Intermediate 4 - continued
    Advanced Waltz 1 - continued
    Foxtrot Advanced 1 - new

    If I look at the calendar, and say to myself, ok what else can I pick up that will let me enjoy the parties more, I'm just not seeing much.

    Maybe...
    NC 2 Step Beginner 2 - resume (missed two weeks)
    Tango Beginner 2 - sure I know it... but if there's a CHANCE they'll keep it going, I'm in.
    Rumba Beginner 1 - same as tango. I know it, it kinda bores me, but if they keep it going and I learn more stuff, I'll enjoy it more. Or, maybe I could pick it up next month?

    Maybe I need to have a chat to the dance director and ask him if they plan to keep some of these going. Maybe I throw more money at the problem and get ANOTHER private instructor to teach me viennese waltz only. Oh, and I REALLY wish they had a hustle group class!

    Doug
  7. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    Thinking that dance education is a series of levels you learn and check off the list is a fast track to being a poor dancer. Dance is not a series of memorized movements or a series of progressively more 'advanced' items, but a holistic process in which the student slowly, very slowly, molds his body into progressively more intuitive shapes and rhythms.
  8. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I disagree with DOI about bolero....lots of folks who like waltz, like bolero...and don't find it to be similar to rumba.....at all...like me for the first 4 years.....I think doug might like it...edit to add; regarding going immediately into a higher level, not ideal, but also not the hardest dance in the world

    as to tango 2...a question....since I don't understand these zillion levelled systems...are you telling me that that entails only material that you have done before?...that you know every single pattern at that level?

    as to viennese, that is definitely a dance worth taking privates on...
    TinyDancer109 likes this.
  9. nikkitta

    nikkitta Well-Known Member

    Yeahbut... though many of us now realize the error of learning many patterns and then fixing the technique, when starting out, it's a common expectation. Particularly if one wants to go out social dancing and be able to do something besides a "boring" basic step over and over. Yes, to us competitive dancers the basic step is not boring. It is a tool and a foundation for everything else. But few of us felt that way initially.
  10. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    agree...however, in fairness, he is only responding to the sytem that is in place where he is at
    danceronice and Bailamosdance like this.
  11. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    also agree
  12. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    you can know a pattern, but you spend years trying to master how to do it...the reason it gets boring is because, if you have no technique (usually learned in privates), the basics do get boring because you have nothing to do and no way of making them better...you know the pattern and that's that....it actually makes sense that most folks with little technical exposure feel that way
    Gorme likes this.
  13. nikkitta

    nikkitta Well-Known Member

    When I first started out, it was Swing all.the.time. in group classes. I got sick of it. Then when I began going to socials, it got really old to have to say "Um, I don't know this dance" -- many of which the studio I was attending at the time would not or could not offer. I wanted to learn more dances. There was also an issue with an instructor clearly not liking certain dances and not wanting to teach them. The attitude he had when he did teach rubbed off and made me not like it either, which is... stupid. So don't discount the importance of your attitude, Doug. Sure, take more classes in the dances you particularly like, but don't give up on the others completely.
  14. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member


    It's more like Int. Rumba meets Smooth Waltz and while he likes waltz, that's not where the timing comes from.

    In any case, it's not a dance I've seen taught in groups much at all, and I really only have heard it called at socials as a "This is an Int. Rumba or Bolero", with not a lot of people doing bolero and even fewer doing it well.

    Also not understanding the "levels" thing as that's not how either of my studios has done groups...I get that's how it is where Doug is, but I'm not really sure how it works.
  15. dbk

    dbk Well-Known Member

    Has the question "why aren't you taking private lessons?" been answered yet?
  16. DerekWeb

    DerekWeb Active Member

    Doug,
    Sounds to me that you have progressed very well since we last heard from you! Getting out there and dancing at the socials like you have been doing.

    I have found that at most "open socials", non-studio, USA dance type groups, the skill level is very mixed. There are many newbies, and others that come for years and take only the lesson before the social. So your experience is not unusual. If I go dancing without DW, or not to my home studio, it can be a good night or a bad night, based on my perception of your definitions of good or bad.

    Also, while Bailamosdance is correct about developing technique over years, many of the social dancing folks who do not take many lessons just want to have fun with a few steps. It is not a sin. Just Dance.
    danceronice likes this.
  17. dgarstang

    dgarstang Member

    dbk: I am. Answered.

    DerekWeb: Thanks... it's only been like ... twice over the past week. And, well, last night didn't go so well. I'm going to go to Cubberley tonight, but I'll probably get a case of the blahsies and come home despondent.

    danceronice: So... CBD splits their group classes into 3 levels, beginner, intermediate and advanced. Each of those is further divided again by 4. So, at the beginning you have beginner 1, all the way to advanced 4. Exactly where bronze, silver and gold fall into those categories is still a mystery to me. Be easier for all if they just did the standard thing.
  18. dgarstang

    dgarstang Member

    Cubberley tonight... intermediate lessons are cha-cha AND/OR V. Waltz. There will either be two lessons taught separately, or ONE lesson combined. You never know until the night. Intermediate cha-cha I can try... intermediate v. waltz I cannot. When they combine the lessons.... *sigh* ....
  19. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    we dance a lot of social bolero in these parts...not sure out there...
  20. dgarstang

    dgarstang Member

    So, I got a little lucky at the lesson tonight. They combined the v waltz and the cha cha, but the Viennese waltz was definitely basic. Left turns with the hook step, and natural turns. He threw in a turn on the left hook turn. I can do this stuff. Not sure I'd subject an unwilling follower to it yet though as I have difficulty going through them. Still, I got something out of it. Low hanging fruit to adding another dance, at least the basics, to the parties.
    nikkitta likes this.

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