"Dancing Tid-bits" Issue #107, Thursday, June 20th, 2002
Teaching Quickstep-Part II
"It is not what you do; what matters is how you do it". Sure, you have heard
that a million times, but I would say again that technique plays an important
role in making the dance joyous and beutiful. The biggest problems in
teaching Quickstep that I have encountered are:
1. Ladies resistance in Turn or shall I say lack of CBM. What is CBM? It is the movement of the opposite side of the body towards the moving foot. CBM is usually applied to initiate a turn. Let's use Quarter Turn to Right in Q.S. as an example. On Step 1, (man), right foot goes forward diag to wall. We must initiate the turn now, so therefore the left side of our body swings forward with the right leg and this is CBM. As turn is continued the CBM vanishes and turn is completed by continuation of rotation created by the swing. So, therefore as the Lady steps back LF on 1, she should assist the turn by taking her right side back towards the moving foot and if she does that well, the Man will say "Wow! you are good".
2. Stepping Outside Partner such as Forward Lock Step: This requires CONTRA BODY MOVEMENT POSITION (CBMP). As is obvious by the word itself, it is a POSITION rather than a movement. You can simply stand and put your one foot forward and slightly across the supporting foot and it will look like you have used CBM but actually you have not moved the body. You have simply placed your foot towards the contra side of the body, or so to say you have "placed it in CBMP."
When you step outside partner, you don't want to look 4 hips wide. You want to maintain a reasonable body contact and if you want a "thin" line rather than a thick line, you will have to step in CBMP. Let's say you have done a Progressive Chasse and you are getting ready to go for a Forward Lock Step. Better make sure your body is more or less facing the wall (between wall and DW actually) and then you must step forward with RF in CBMP. This is so important to learn early in any dance specially Q.S.
3. Swing, or should I say the lack of it. In USA swing usually has connotation of swing dance. I am talking here the body swing that creates the rise and fall. Does Swing create rise and fall, or is it the Rise and Fall that creates Swing? You tell me. Remember the song "It dont mean a thing, if it ain't got that swing" which is so true. You may want to read tid-bits # 24 which was dedicated to swinging correctly.
Next week some basic but interesting choreography for a beginner QS class.