one guys beginning dance struggles

Discussion in 'General Dance Discussion' started by wiseman, Jun 16, 2010.

  1. sambagirl

    sambagirl Member

    Group classes can also provide opportunities for you to work on certain techniques covered in private lessons. You can work on your own body mechanics and, as others have pointed out, try to develop connection with different people. Then, in your next private, you can discuss your experiences with your instructor (although merely complaining about the lack of connection you feel in class would probably be counterproductive).
     
  2. wiseman

    wiseman New Member

    So you're saying private lessons aren't a good idea?
     
  3. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    Oh NO! Private lessons are a GREAT idea. I would always recommend a private over a group class.

    BUT


    a private teacher that sees dance in terms of 'basic steps' only is NOT recommended.
     
  4. wiseman

    wiseman New Member

    Oh yeah. That's the kind of teacher I had at the old dance studio. Good thing I left that place. I was paying $80 an hour for it. Heh!
     
  5. sambagirl

    sambagirl Member

    It's worth saying, however, that particular students may need to be taught basic steps before any other issues can be addressed (I'm not saying that's the case with you, wiseman). So I'd hesitate to say we should judge a teacher merely by what he or she chooses to focus on in one particular case.
     
  6. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    yes - agreed. And also, wiseman, realize you are NOT a wiseman making judgement on your progress, learning, or the teaching based on the short time you have been learning...
     
  7. wiseman

    wiseman New Member

    I understand, but I need to make sure I'm learning correctly. Why spend $80 on private classes that aren't getting anywhere? Or why spend time going to group classes if the instructor is lousy and you're not learning?

    This is why I have to make judgments. I hate to find out 5 months later that I learned nothing and just wasted 5 months of my life and money going for these classes. I need to find a class that works for me.
     
  8. sambagirl

    sambagirl Member

    I think it's perfectly fine to say that, at this point in time, what works for you is taking more group classes. Try to keep an open mind, as over time that what works for you may change.

    I would just not recommend that you make blanket statements about a particular instructor or mode of learning as people's needs differ and evolve.
     
  9. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    But there's little point in resorting to private lessons for that until an attempt or three has been made to address it in groups.

    I do find it perfectly reasonable to be judgemental of someone who recommends private lessons over groups for introductory topics, because that's a business move not a dancing one.
     
  10. sambanada

    sambanada Active Member

    privates
     
  11. wiseman

    wiseman New Member

    Exactly. And don't forget the cost difference too. I don't know how it is elsewhere, but here in NY, it costs $15 for a group class while it's a whopping $80 for a private. If I'm going to spend the extra $65, it better be worth it.

    Anyways, this new studio is giving me a special $20 private lesson tonight as a trial. I'll also be attending another group class as well. So, tonight I can make an even better judgment. :D
     
  12. waltzgirl

    waltzgirl New Member

    As a follower who dances with quite a few men who have taken only group classes, I can tell you some things that they are lacking because these things are usually not covered (or covered well) in group classes: posture, frame, connection, leading.

    Group classes just can't give you the individual attention that is needed to make the particular adjustments you need to make in those areas to become a good dancer. There's nothing like the detailed feedback you get from a private lesson on these issues.

    So my recommendation is to take group lessons to learn patterns and to take privates with a focus on technique. You can start out with a few months of groups only, but I'd add some privates in pretty soon.

    If your studio has socials, you should start going to those as soon as you know a few basic patterns in two or three dances.
     
  13. toothlesstiger

    toothlesstiger Well-Known Member

    The decision depends on what you want to optimize. If you are sitting on a pile of cash, by all means find a good teacher and go for private lessons. For those of us that want to maximize the progress made on a dollar, my personal experience has been partially expressed in some of the posts.

    1) Group classes for learning figures. All the figures you can, not just basic ones.
    2) Lots of practice, both by yourself (or with DP) and at social or practice dances.
    3) Private lessons to learn proper technique.

    I don't want to pay $75/hr to learn where to stick my feet when I can pay $15. I also want to minimize how often my private lesson coach corrects the same error. Practice with a coach can be very productive, but is that practice worth $75/hr? Not to me. I want to be fixing still finer points, not be corrected on footwork for the same figure for the 100th time.

    I also take advantage of group classes to practice. If I already know the figure being taught, I will take that opportunity to practice on technique improvements.
     
  14. toothlesstiger

    toothlesstiger Well-Known Member

    I started taking private lessons when I realized I was not going to learn to lead well in groups.
     
  15. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    Learning where to stick your feet: $15 / hr
    Learning HOW to stick your feet : $75/hr
    Learning how to move and actually DANCE: priceless
     
  16. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    Indeed, there are critical parts of a dancer's education which you cannot purchase
     
  17. wiseman

    wiseman New Member

    That's it. Leading is something that is taught best in a private lesson. But private instructors don't usually teach leading until you start becoming more advanced. At least, at my old studio, they didn't. I was going for private lessons for a month at the old place and haven't been taught how to lead yet. When I asked, they told me that I must master the steps first before I can be taught how to lead.
     
  18. wiseman

    wiseman New Member

    Agreed. BTW, I answered your PM. If you can give me some help on where to go for lessons in NYC, I'd really appreciate it. I'm really anxious about finding a good studio.
     
  19. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    sure will do that in a minute - what are you studying? What dances?
     
  20. wiseman

    wiseman New Member

    Right now....Salsa On2 since it's the most popular class at the studio.
     

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