"Dancing Tid-bits" Issue #120, Thursday, September 19 2002

Dancing Tid-bits
Lock Step Chasse, Forward

Is Lock Step a Chasse? Yes! Lock Step in any dance whether Quickstep, Waltz or Cha Cha is a chasse movement. Remember the definition of Chasse?...Step, Together, Step..! You may also say "I know everything about Cha Cha Locks, forget it!". I therefore will present a short synopsis of few elements in this tidbit that I see many students ignore.

Forward Lock Step: Can be done either on RF or LF. However it is more commonly done on the RF both by man and the lady alternately. Let's do as Man or Lady, RF back and transfer weight forw.to LF (count 2-3), now ready to do forward lock. RF forward on 4, LF crosses behind in a Latin Cross on "&" and then RF forward and rightward on 1; you have done a Forward Lock Step. Footwork is Ball-flat, Ball, Ball-flat. It is as simple as that. However it needs more explanation and the following details are very important:

Shaping: Every moment in any kind of dancing requires proper "Shaping". No shape, no dance. It is most important to that as soon as you are ready to take RF forw. on 4, the body starts to lead from the right side. In other ward you have a Right Side Leading throughout 4&1. So the message is 'produce a shape and don't just dance with bodies flat."

Leg Lines: On 4 the R Leg has become almost straight and as you place LF behind RFin a Latin Cross, both knees will tend to compress, left more than the Right. And then, as you step forward on RF both legs will straighten out according to standard technique. I do feel a little more toe-effect on "&" and a slight rise as the knees straighten out. This is what I call putting "Life" into this action.

Feet Positions: Naturally, your teacher will give you the finite details which are important but I feel many students do not move their RF slightly rightwrds on 1 at the end of lock step. Why is It is so important to do this? As you know that after 1 you are ready to do a forward rock on LF and if you hane not removed the obstacle (RF) on 1 you will have to go "around" RF and that will disturb balance, timing and proper shaping.

Footwork: 4 & 1 is Ball-flat, Ball, Ball-flat. I do feel that the ball on '&" tends to become Toe as knees straighten out.

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