Ballroom Dance > how are your lessons going? thread II

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by fascination, Dec 20, 2007.

  1. FancyFeet

    FancyFeet Well-Known Member

    ^^My goal is to get good enough that my really off days look pretty, and are good enough to final/place :)

    Another lesson for me last night - they have been frequent over the last week or so due to pro's imminent departure for Blackpool, and my competition scheduled shortly after he returns - and it was decent, though not great. Last lesson before he leaves, actually. We ran all the dances I'll be doing, and I happily can make it through full run-throughs now... but there's still some stuff to fix. Especially tango, which is just not at the quality of the others and therefore stands out - and not in a good way :(

    On the happy side, I hit a foxtrot wall last night so well that it made pro go to new levels of excitement. Usually, he just gets quiet when things are going well, but last night he lit up and was literally bouncing a bit on his feet as he talked. Apparently, "that was perfect, and is how I want you to dance foxtrot all the time", and it was "so easy and light". Great, now I've raised the bar on myself. I admit, it felt awesome: bounce fallaway has never had that fun and bouncy but floaty and powerful look before, and throwaway oversway has never felt that effortless or looked that great... but I'm still trying to figure out what I did. I was able to replicate it a few times last night, and apply it to other walls, but I'm a little worried that I'll struggle to find it again... Oh, and if FT can consistently feel like that, I completely understand how so many of the standard pros say that it is their favourite dance.

    Following the lesson, also scheduled a chat with pro to write down the changes made to my routines over the last couple days so I can practice them, discuss my "homework" for his time away, and decide on my competition entries as the registration deadline is while pro is away. We had planned to do this yesterday, but didn't get to it. He mentions that he doen't really want me to register yet, and he'll tell me why when we talk... I say ok, but remind him how I feel about paying late fees (really only ok when the decision to go is made late)... he says we'll talk. The last time he hedged on me registering for something we had been planning for months, it was because he and his partner were hoping to qualify for a big international comp (and did) so I couldn't do mine, and had to sub another one that was unsatifying. So now I have until tomorrow night to freak out about what might be going on and torture myself with what-if scenarios. Awesome.
  2. scullystwin42

    scullystwin42 Well-Known Member

    Had a great coaching last night - fixed my turneos (am i spelling that right?) and got feedback on one item to change that should improve all of my smooth dances. unfortunately, i'm not quite sure i get how to apply it consistently. I am supposed to be more aware of where my connection is - the line between me and my partner, and where my core is supposed to be to help with that. i can't say it exactly like the coach said, but I got the feeling of it a bit yesterday. scheduled another lesson today to help figure it out more. and then, LONG WEEKEND of driving from chicago to virginia with two young kids. SUPER AWESOME FUN :p
  3. Cal

    Cal Well-Known Member

    A thin sliver of hope for my head position.
    Purr and fascination like this.
  4. dncergrl

    dncergrl Active Member

    I have been really frustrated with my technique and in particular, getting the deeply ingrained jazz/ballet habits out of my body, even though I can pick up patterns quickly. I've been doing latin < 2 yrs. Since we switched to open work and have, by chance, been doing only one dance last 2.5 weeks, I find my technique improving in that dance (of course). I come home and review the choreo and the tech corrections and have been eating/ sleeping/breathing this one dance. And I am finally getting somewhere. Even when I mentally rehearse, the technique feels different. So, maybe this is a good strategy: blitz one dance at a time to really get the tech down and then, when the tech is "automatic", move to the next dance, and just review the previously learned dance so as not to backslide. This might better than working on 5 dances here and there and practicing on my own, perhaps badly. For me, massed learning and practice may be better than distributed learning and practice. Comments?
  5. Dancing Irishman

    Dancing Irishman Well-Known Member

    Makes a lot of sense. Depending on how your coach teaches technique, you might also find that solid technique knowledge in one dance is an asset in learning another (for example, my coach likes using my relatively well drilled rumba walk technique as a teaching tool for deepening my understanding of cha cha and samba walks).

    Something you might also find helpful is a quick review session at the start or end of each practice. You have to set clear expectations with yourself that your goal is not to improve the non-focus four, but merely maintain them near where they were at the end of when you last focused on them (i.e. be clear with yourself that it's ok to still not have perfect that thing you didn't have perfect at the end of focusing on it).
  6. Hedwaite

    Hedwaite Well-Known Member

    Awesome. I even spent a whole hour on Satan's puppet-show, aka rumba.
    IndyLady, JudeMorrigan and cornutt like this.
  7. RiseNFall

    RiseNFall Well-Known Member

    Holy dance shoes, I just had a great lesson. I've been feeling stuck, plodding, and frustrated enough that I did a search here on threads with "frustration" in their title last week and read them to help deal with how I was feeling. Fascination said several times (once per thread), "frustration is just progress in incubation". I've been in this spot before in other activities and it has always passed, but it was becoming hard to deal with. On top of everything else, I injured myself practicing last week and had to take time off. Great, I think, how am I ever going to learn this if I can't even practice without hurting myself?? Then suddenly, everything started coming together last lesson and that progress continued into this one. Something that I had been aware for for at least three years of my 3.75 years of dancing--and despaired of ever getting--finally started working and untold other issues just went away at the same time. It will take time for this to become consistent, but I am stunned at the amount of improvement just today. :D:D:D
    Purr, SwayWithMe, Dean and 4 others like this.
  8. GGinrhinestones

    GGinrhinestones Well-Known Member

    So excited to finally be back to lessons again! After a long hiatus including a move and finding a new teacher, I think I've managed both of those things. Met the new guy yesterday and the time flew by...really looking forward to where this might go. It's hard to swap to someone new, but it ended on a such great note and I've got a great new instructor to challenge me and push me to a new level.
    debmc and dancelvr like this.
  9. cornutt

    cornutt Well-Known Member

    The phrase of the week is "lazy pivoting". Me: need to maintain left shoulder lead. AP: needs to work on forward drive. Both of us: keep upright posture.
  10. bowi

    bowi Member

    I'm still a beginner and I take group classes at the university club. We've been focussing a lot on lead and follow lately. I finally know how to lead a spin turn in the Waltz. We've also done some work on how to lead the lock step in the quickstep. One girl said that my lead for the lock step was very clear when I focussed on what we practiced during the last lesson, which is always nice to hear.
    cornutt and Terpsichorean Clod like this.
  11. debmc

    debmc Well-Known Member

    I'm continuing to learn open work. I am so out of my comfort zone!
    It's fun though!
  12. SwayWithMe

    SwayWithMe Well-Known Member

    Practice partner and I are going to be competing together for the first time at the end of next month (squee! I should say AP now!), and had our first ever coaching together today. It went really well! She was pleased with the work we've done, and the bits she wanted to work on were the same things that were bothering us. (At least we knew they were wrong, if not what to change to make them better? LOL) Plenty to work on before next week. :D
    Sania, dancelvr and raindance like this.
  13. dancelvr

    dancelvr Well-Known Member

    First lesson in three weeks! (Thank you, jury duty.) And, we spent almost the entire lesson on Samba. I was not thrilled at first, but as the lesson went on, and we put some step combinations together......color me happy! There is soooo much more work on technique ahead of me, but I'm looking forward to the challenge. Can't wait to get back on the practice floor!
  14. Dancing Irishman

    Dancing Irishman Well-Known Member

    Lesson with a big name smooth instructor this weekend! (Teacher's teacher, so he visits pretty often).

    Excited doesn't even begin to describe how I feel. But also nervous, because I'm way below where I'd like to be in terms of ability level.

    JANATHOME Well-Known Member

    I am sure I have said this before, but really... OMG That was the best coaching session I have ever had!!
  16. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    my lessons today were great....and not only were they great today, but they made me grateful for all of the good and bad days that came before them in my dance lessons over the last decade....grateful that they have allowed me to be able to do what I now need to do to take my dancing to the next level....enjoyed working open smooth choreo and forcing myself to return to greater dedication to partnering....and to being responsible for those elements that are mine to execute while waiting to respond to those elements which aren't mine to execute...and for a dynamic on the lesson that is respectful and comfortable enough to allow partnering to work....

    on top of all of that, simply enjoyed the body flight....been dreaming about it...I miss it....while I can do it alone, it isn't nearly as pleasant as when it is amidst interaction with someone else...3 hours of can't beat that
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2014
    Purr, Dean, j_alexandra and 2 others like this.
  17. nikkitta

    nikkitta Well-Known Member

    very glad to hear you got through your Motrin episode and were able to enjoy your lesson!
  18. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    thanks....the heating pad and a switch to aleeve really helped
  19. sbrnsmith

    sbrnsmith Well-Known Member

    So excited- finally feel like I have a breakthru in my Rhythm dancing with hip action and cuban motion that I have struggled for so long with- I was starting to feel like I need to stick with Smooth and Standard, but it is FINALLY coming together- I don't know what did it, but it was like a light bulb moment. I'm so grateful my instructor persisted in presenting the info in different ways till something clicked- now I can't wait to get back for my remaining 6 classes this week as well as practice on my own! I am soooo excited!
  20. Dancing Irishman

    Dancing Irishman Well-Known Member

    Had my first smooth coaching ever with a visiting coach on Saturday, and it was AMAZING!!! Totally transformed how I think about movement in smooth / standard.

    And....I might have finally found what promenade position is really supposed to feel like!!!

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