"Dancing Tid-bits" Issue #223, Thursday, March 1, 2007

Dancing Tid-bits
Movement of your Body?

Dancing is really as simple as moving your body to music and having a good time. But then it is amazing (Isn't it?) how complicated it gets when you hear a lecture from Luca or Loraine. I was fortunate enough to hear one of their lectures a couple of years ago at University of Michigan Ballroom in Ann Arbor. I am still thinking and trying to understand what was all said. Then I recently saw a video tape of Loraine's Lecture from the BDF Lecture Series in Blackpool.

When Dorian and I were driving together to Rochester to take our ISTD Examination at least 10 years ago, all of a sudden the discussion came up; What moves first, the Body or the Feet, when you start to move either forward or back for that matter. Today we will confine our discussion on Forward Movement.

So, let's see; Feather Step, step 1, RF Forward for Man: We will not talk about a million other details here such as Preparation, Balance, Hold or things like that. Question is what moves first: the Body or the Foot? In my discussions with Dorian I was adamant that it is the Body that moves first..period. He said, No the Foot and Leg. We argued and argued and arrived in cold wintery Rochester, NY at Peter Billets Studio. Let's leave that story at that. I have always been insisting that I was right but now that I hear Loraine on how she and Luca analyze this intersting phenomenon, I am thoroughly confused. To undesrstand Luca, you have to be as much of a genius as he is but I think Loraine tries to make it simpler for people like me and hopefuly you.

What I see from her presentation is a classical picture of a Man (Champion) taking a long Step forward on RF, and the Leg and Foot seem to be so much more forward in advance of the Body that I feel like hugging Dorian and say, he was so right. But wait a minute! it is not as simple as that. As I finished this sentence I got up from my chair and tried to simulate her picture. I was able to create some of it what she was doing but I did feel my "body moving forward a bit before I even thought of moving my leg". I have reached the following conclusions (a compromise with Dorian).

Step 1 of the Feather Step, RF forward: As I move forward or as I think of moving forward, I feel an impetus in my body to move first and body does tend to move a little. This becomes complicated as to what part of body wants to move first. I feel it is my left side of the body that goes forward more and this is of course termed CBM. Then, as I am lowering (I should have lowered already) my right foot and leg take over in advance of my body a lot to simulate a Champion's Style. Heel touches the floor for a "mid stride" that I can never feel, toe comes down and my body arrives gradually on right foot as left foot is closing on to right. And so goes on the dance. I keep forgetting about my partner where she is or how she feels.

It's all so frustrating.

Best Wishes, Max

This article is part of and should be seen in the frame context of Dancesport UK, Tid-bits