"Dancing Tid-bits" Issue #125, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2002
Natural Turn and Natural Weave
The question is; Is it more difficult to lead a heel turn in a Natural Turn and why is Natural Weave such a problem?
Yes, indeed! The natural turn initially seems to be much difficult for beginners. Even a Waltz Natural Turn seems to be more unnatural. I used to think why? Then I came up with the following explanation. (The generic answer to any question that relates to.."Why?" in ballroom is "The body relationship". If you give this answer in any situation, you will be right 90% of times). So, the answer here is-body relationship.
Yes, the Man has the Lady slight offset to his right side. In other words the fulcrum point moves slightly to right and therefore in a reverse turn, there is more "leverage" due to longer arm of moment. In the Natural turn, this torque is slightly less so you cannot use CBM as effectively and that is why the natural turns seem to be more difficult to lead initially.
Are there any tips to overcome this problem? No, not really. However if you work with your coach and concentrate on proper body relationship, frame and connection with body tone and better awareness of CBM this problem can be overcome with practice and more practice.
Exercise: (Men) Start facing DC, do a 123 of Reverse Turn, end backing LOD, Neutralize, in other word bring RF to LF without weight. Now do 123 of Natural Turn facing against LOD with stronger CBM and a good lead, end backing DW against LOD Neutralize (LF to RF without weight) and repeat ad lib. Ladies reciprocate. You can do them by yourself and soon there should be no problem.
What is the problem with Natural Weave? The natural weave can be started either from PP or normal closed hold. It feels so much easier to me to do it from PP. However as you start from a close hold again, there is a problem or two.
1. The usual difficulty of leading a normal heel turn as described earlier which I think you have overcome by now.
2. The most important thing is that you have to put the lady in such a position that she can step RF forward on 4, outside partner (OP) with ease. Therefore you have to plan your initial natural turn ahead very carefully. Turn slightly less initially and then continue the turn between 2 and 3 as you step back on 3 (RF back, right side leading). If you are conscious of this little detail which is of course described in each technique, you would have placed the lady in a nice position for her to step RF forward outside partner, her left side leading on step 4 and from then on it is not all that difficult.
Hope this tidbit helps, Best wishes, Max
Announcements: Some important events at Dancesport Academy of Michigan, Dearborn. Wonderful opportunity to see world class coaches:
1. Pierre Allaire giving a Samba Lesson, Oct 25, Friday at 8 pm.
2. Stephen Hillier and Jennifer (his wife) giving 2 lectures. Tuesday, Oct 29: 8 PM, How to use Legs and Ankles in Ballroom Dacing Wednesday, Oct 30, 8 PM, How to Lead and Follow
You can call 313 724 3262 for details