I'm taking another dance class over the summer - so it's time to add to my previous post on the Rules of Dance.
- Perfect Dance position is found when the lady's center meets the man's corner. To elaborate, my instructor always says that a man is like a two-by-four. If you imagine the corner of a two-by-four running from his right ear to his hip down to his right foot, you've got the man's corner on his point of perfect balance (right behind the first two toes). It's pretty clear where the lady's center is - right where the buttons of her blouse meet is how my instructor describes it. So, if you match her center to his corner, she'll be at a slight angle from him which will prevent her from being kicked.
- side note to perfect position - in Tango, the couple is supposed to imagine there's a china dinner plate between their hips. Too far apart and you get broken china everywhere. This is pretty specific to Tango, but it makes a big difference in dancing well.
- When you're dancing as the lady, always point your toes. you can try it to see the difference - step back normally and look at your foot. Then (if you're not already doing so) step back with your toes first. It adds about a foot to your stride and prevents you from being stepped on.
- For the individual, it's important to stand up straight while in dance position so you're not weighing down your partner. To do so, consider the three main parts of your body - the head, the rib cage, and the pelvic bone. If those three are in line. you will stand straight and dance well, if not, you fall over (think like a snowman).
- it is important that the lady never reach for the man. He controls where your dance position stands, and if you reach for him, you are out of balance, guaranteed. As an example, yesterday in class we practiced the proper way to get into tango dance position (though the principle is the same for all dances I think). Step 1 - the man steps forward on his left foot, extending his left hand to the lady. Step 2 - she steps into him with her right foot, placing her hand in his and staying poised on her right foot. Step 3 - he places his left arm on her back shoulder blade, at which she is prompted to place her hand on his deltoid. This should automatically cause a shift in weight to the other foot so that the couple stands in proper dance position and the man has his left foot (the lady the right foot) free to start the figure.
I'm sorry if that was boringly technical about dance - I'll try to remember to post more frequently with some other summer thoughts.