Had what I considered to be a bad lesson... I was a little (or a bunch, depending on the moment) off, and we were working on the weakest part of my weakest dance at my request. Over, and over, and over. For the whole hour. We fixed TONS (yay!), but it was frustrating, and soooo technical, and my brain was on overload.
Pro thought I had a really good lesson and that we did some great work. (He doesn't usually say this.) Could it be that I'm finally discovering my consistency, and that even when I'm "off", it's good???
lessons before comp were good, made some last minute corrections that made a huge difference. looking forward to the process of making that next leap in level, it's time to look at what needs to be strengthened or added!
Lessons heading in to my technique break....identified the next couple of subjects and started work on them right away. Savoring the progress of the last year was short and now seems like a distant memory. It's back on the hamster wheel I go.....
I had a very nice lesson yesterday where we spent a good bit of it working on bringing some characterization and emotion to my dances. Being the gigantic nerd that I am, it's very easy for me to focus entirely on the technical aspects of things, so this was probably time well-spent. And as an added bonus, while focusing on that for my tango, my instructor pretty much went all-out for a long wall. I don't think I've ever seen her do that with a student before. While I don't expect it to become a regular occurance with me for some time (at the very least) and that she was just trying to help me get in character, it was a kind of awesome.
I have not had one lesson since July, bone chip off of knee cap - doctor demanded I DO NOTHING for 8 weeks, that also included no threadmill work. sigh. and doing an about face, DH had a meltdown about $$$ on the dancing although he fully supports this passion of mine. Too long to go int...o might do group competitive lessons in October when I get back for awhile and a lesson here and there until the boat rights itself, just too much going on.
I had a very nice lesson yesterday where we spent a good bit of it working on bringing some characterization and emotion to my dances. Being the gigantic nerd that I am, it's very easy for me to focus entirely on the technical aspects of things
And as an added bonus, while focusing on that for my tango, my instructor pretty much went all-out for a long wall... While I don't expect it to become a regular occurance with me for some time (at the very least) and that she was just trying to help me get in character, it was a kind of awesome.
Although I have a partner, I sometimes take lessons solo for a more concentrated focus on my dancing. Often in these lessons we work on basic patterns, general concepts, or drills and such, but sometimes we actually dance parts of my routines. And speaking of awesome, those times are very nearly the same kind of exhilaration I get from jumping out of a plane...
Kinda frustrated. The class we're in has been together for a year and a quarter and it's really slow. We're beginners, so it wouldn't be right for the teacher to go charging off into the distance with us, but I'm really starting to resent the pace. We work on a variety of dances, which is great, but we spend about half of each lesson recapping the steps because some of our classmates can't remember them from one week to the next. Going over things is good but we very rarely get any pointers on how to do things better - we just trundle round, not really knowing whether we're doing it right or not because our teacher is too busy picking up the couples who are lost or making huge mistakes. It feels like we're suffering because we can remember the steps. I wish we saw more of the teacher. Practising helps us learn the steps but we can't teach ourselves how to do them, if you see what I mean. This has turned into a bit of a rant - I'm sorry. I just feel like we're not progressing and I don't really know what to do about it.
I think it went alright. I don't think it'll ever really be a strong suit for me, but I don't think my efforts were entirely in vain. And trying to focus on it probably helped my tango out a bit, which tends to be a bit ... nice. I dread having to worry about it in Latin though. The idea of me and my amateur partner trying to sell an open rumba routine is somewhere between terrifying and hilarious. Happily, we're in absolutely no danger of having to worry about open latin any time soon.
Think about it this way. Do you still want to keep taking the same beginning rumba group class over and over again. Each time the instructor teaches the basic box step, and (pick two: crossover break, cross body lead, underarm turn, fifth position breaks, open break under arm turn, open cuban walk, quick underarm turn, etc.) and maybe (pick one: alternating underarm turn, open walk with spot turn, quick underarm turn with rocks, etc.), if you're lucky.
It might be more cost effective spending your money learning how to make the steps you already know look better - or maybe learning more advanced patterns, assuming you already know most of the basic patterns.
Group classes are intended to provide kind of a tasting menu of dances for people, with the hope that they'll pick some they like and further develop those through private lessons. They're around for the social aspect of meeting people and developing a core group of friends for cheaper than the price of a private, glossing over some things, and moving on more quickly. Note: The group classes I just described are not to be confused with "specialty groups" or "masters classes" or the kind of groups offered in workshops or with a specific focus for a similarly-minded group. Most groups are designed with more beginner-oriented dancers in mind, because they're a cheap way to get started and feel included.
Private lessons are where a person or partnership can develop other aspects of dancing that there aren't time for covering in a group class because of the number of students with varying abilities. They're more tailored to fit your own needs, and most people who take private lessons in addition to group classes eventually get bored with group classes and move on more quickly.
If you're in a group class where the teacher does go from couple to couple and help out some of the time, you're paying for that class and deserve as much help as s/he's giving to the other people- politely flag them down with a specific question, and see if you get the help you need, but remember, they won't be able to take up a lot of time with you, because they're assuming you're catching on more quickly than the slowpokes down at the end who need constant reminders what dance it is you're actually working on- it's their goal to keep those people coming, and sometimes they forget about the others, or even take them for granted, which is bad, but human and unintentional.
Wow. Thanks, guys. That's very useful advice. I feel quite bad about complaining about it, actually, but this puts it in perspective. I might have a chat with DP about the possibility of a private lesson or two to see how we get on.