"Dancing Tid-bits" Issue #79, Thursday, December 6, 2001
Introduction: They say, "if one has learned to walk, one has learned to
dance", be it Rumba, Fox-trot or Waltz. Of course then we must develop the
character of each Dance, The Fox-trot walk is different from a Rumba walk. We
will leave aside the Ballroom Walks today and discuss a special variety of
Latin Walks that are commonly termed as Delayed Walks.
Rumba walks represent the gist of Latin. Not going into too many details Rumba walks are characterized with body movement, movement of the leg and a quick straightening of the Leg, perhaps even before a full stride has been accomplished? The essential feature of the Rumba walks is early straightening of Leg almost to a locked or hyperextended position. These are Forward Walks. And then, of course there is external rotation of back foot and settling of the hip resulting in Cuban Motion. It is assumed that everybody knows all that (Dancing Tid-bits #41, #42). So today let's discuss Delayed Walks.
What are Delayed Walks: Quite obviously it is in the name i.e. the walks are delayed. What that means is that the Knee remains flexed (bent) for a longer period and lowering of the Heel is delayed. You may have seen Lady's step 3 of a Hip Twist where she almost creates a Line with bent knee across or forward of Left Foot and then twists her Hip to go forward LF step 4, forward RF step 5 and back LF step 6. This a Delayed Walk, Knee Compressed (step 3) and as far as I can tell the term was introduced in the new Walter Laird book on Latin Dancing, doesn't mean this was not done before. The new ISTD manual refers to this as Pressed Forward Walk.
Delayed Forward Walk, Knee Straight: Look at a good lady doing a perfect Alemana. On her step step 4 she is making a turn to her right and very delicately extends her LF, knee straight to left side of Man and delays her weight transference and then quickly makes almost 1/2 a turn to right on ball of LF; she has used a Delayed Forward Walk Knee Straight (IDTA). The ISTD manual will describe it as Extended Forward Walk.
What about Delayed Walk Backward: Sure, when Man is doing a Latin Cross such as step 1 of Natural Top (RF back & across) he is delaying lowering of the heel. It must be understood though that Knee is bent and this is called Delayed Walk Backward, Knee compressed. It would rather be unnatural and difficult to do a Delayed Back Walk-with knee straight. Summary:
Delayed Forward Walk, Knee Compressed (IDTA) = Pressed Forward Walk (ISTD) example step 3 Lady Hip Twist
Delayed Forward Walk, Knee Straight (IDTA) = Extended Forward Walk (ISTD) example step 4 Lady Alemana
Delayed Backward Walk, Knee Compressed IDTA) = Pressed Backward Walk (ISTD) example Step1 Natural Top Man Latin Cross
No such thing as Delayed Backward Walk Knee Straight, No IDTA, No ISTD
I hope you do not blame me for all these different terms. It is not necessary to know all the terms perhaps but as a teacher, shouldn't you? Also it is all at Bronze Level.
Best Wishes from Max...Happy Holidays!
Questions and comments to Dancemax@aol.com, thank you.