Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by MintyMe, Apr 1, 2014.
To me, the unsolicited teaching and criticizing of a random social partner is an act of rudeness.
Yes, that's what I'm talking about, too. It doesn't happen at the studio dance parties that I go to (OK, once, but the guy wasn't a studio regular), but it does when I go to non-studio ballroom social dances. I hate it and cross the guy off my mental list of people to dance with, but since there are usually more men/leaders than women/followers, I'm not sure the offenders even notice.
I wish there was a sign like that on the front door of the studio I occasionally go social dancing. In big bold red letters. My immediate reaction when a random guy starts correcting me is to walk away, but I am nice, so I suffer for another 2-3 minutes just to never dance with him again. Not that he asks anyway. The whole thing just doesn't make any sense. Guys, please stop it!
To be fair, I'm told some followers do it as well. I used to swap stories with a leader who went to a lot of social dances.
True. Some ladies are just as bad. I used to have a student who would tell me about a woman at the social dance who kept incorrectly correcting him. I told him to stop dancing with her, or at least tell her "that's not what my teacher tells me in my private lessons."
The problem is finding somebody with the balls to actually speak up- and by speaking up, I don't mean biting off someone's head, I just mean saying "No Thanks" or being honest- if kind- about their feelings. They'd rather make excuses, leave, quit, and leave it all on the teachers, but personal responsibility is the... person's responsibility sometimes.
How many beginner classes teach social ballroom etiquette? I mean really teach it, not passingly mention a few platitudes. Out of those few, how many continue to reinforce that knowledge? I think even the best teachers believe it was taught or picked up elsewhere.
Moreover, in a real lesson a teacher usually would not proceed to enumerate thing after thing after thing a student is doing wrong and needs to improve. Of course, a beginner has a lot to work on, and it is not possible to learn and correct it all at once.
Also, instructors usually notice and point out the stuff the students are doing right.
And may I ask, bentler, why did you copy, verbatim, a part of my earlier post without putting any quotation marks?
I definitely do teach etiquette. How do you invite a person to dance, how do you accept/reject one, how do you handle acceptance or rejection, traffic alerts, distance, "ballroom to barroom translation", LOD, WDW, and a lot of other things. I don't dwell on it, but I do make sure it's covered well before moving on, and not just that it happens, but why it happens and how one benefits from it. In level two, I remind people "Sometimes, the most helpful thing you can do for your partner is shutting up.- in varying ways, obviously.
I teach etiquette, but in dribs and drabs here and there. And we all know people don't always listen. And I don't always think to tell people, "Don't be an @$$hat" because it doesn't occur to me that they will be.
I'm always open to improvement. If the person offering advice tells me something that helps me better understand, great. One lesson many have trouble learning is the part about dancing being fun. Over analysis can give the brain way too much to think about, and then it is not so easy to enjoy. And when you enjoy what you do, you are more likely to improve faster.
Unfortunately, some people who have that habit seem incorrigible. No amount of instructions on the social etiquette, reminders or even negative feedback make them stop. At best, they hold it for a while, and eventually recommence, or just move on to the next "victim".
It does not mean that sort of behavior should be excused or tolerated, though.
Fortunately, as most see me as a teacher, I don't think these people would tend to try that on me. But I have seen these people, and there are sometimes people who do fall victim. I remember a student who came to me for a couple of lessons, and her handhold was the strongest I had felt in a long time. There was a lot of tension in her dancing. I tried to get her to relax move more with the body, but then she just went back to the previous partner (teacher? not sure) that constantly criticized her.
It's a spammer (bot?) that has now been banned.
Ha! I always suspected that this was the case. And of course no matter how much you know, if you AREN'T recognized as a teacher you don't know nothin'.
That's a good question. I'm going to start mentioning to the instructors at our studio that they should mention etiquette topics during groups. We have a lot of newbies right now so now's the time.
I love this, I'm stealing it!!!!!!!!!!
I had a run-in with a critical follower at a social dance over the weekend. A friend of mine reserved a few tables and this lady took my chair at one of the tables next to a mutual friend of our's. This mutual friend is someone I often dance with at social dances and is at my full social bronze level or close to it. The stranger is a newbie at our mutual friend's studio and I've never seen her anywhere before. She may not even have been aware of my longstanding relationship with her friend. Anyway, I let her take my seat even though she was a stranger both to me and the lady who had reserved the tables. She was a cold fish to everyone else at our table, only talking to my friend and cutting me out. I danced a cha cha with her and she was spinning in the wrong direction on our crossover turns. When I got back to "our" table she wouldn't shut up about what what a poor leader I was, blaming the whole fiasco on me. I gritted my teeth and let it go. After all she is a friend of my friend. She shot down my request for a swing dance later on, citing my incompetence at the cha cha. Her cha cha looked more like a salsa to me. Not only did she steal my chair, she took the attention of my frequent dance partner and attempted to take my pride as well! She didn't say goodbye to our mutual friend personally but left me to do it and flew off unceremoniously.
What. A. B.
Separate names with a comma.