Yesterday marked the beginning of the Intermediate level swing dancing classes. Yet again, a big thanks to Lily and Doug. This will be my last thanks to Doug for a while though, as he is too famous to teach classes now (solicit response here).
The Cursed River
So, the previous week, which was the final week of the beginner class, had brought forth a time of diverging fates. I had to choose where I would take my intermediate class. I told people I was probably going to go to the Carlyle Club, which I can walk to. Then, I stopped myself. “Wait a minute, do I want to be one of ‘those people’? Hell no!” I don’t want to live my life in an 8 block radius or never cross the Potomac as if it was a galactic border. So, I did indeed decide to continue classes at Capitol Hill.
Lessons Learned from this week
During the Swing Out, Lindy Hop, keep those knees bent and better be in position like you are sitting your butt down on a bar stool. As in, keep those knees bent, stay centered, but scoot that butt back, just a little crouch. Don’t lean back from the shoulders or you might go for a backwards dive that’ll make a big splash and even the Russian judge will give you a 2.0.
The footwork really is the most important part. If you can get the footwork down, then the rest will follow. My experience with socially dancing is that the turns can be pretty easy to fudge and go through the motions and look pretty good, at least for a while. The footwork though is something that could really screw up any and every dance move. Include actually having some rhythm with whatever song is playing in the importance of the footwork.
Leads, remember that communicating with your partner is done a lot through your hands. After class, Lily helped us refine the Texas Tommy using both hands on the partners hips and it went gloriously. I can’t wait to try it out socially.
For me personally though, I think the biggest thing I’ve got to work on is to stop moving forward on the 1 and 2 count. I just get so excited and carried away with moving back and forth that I forget to stop and just dance a little there. I mean, Dancin’ with Myslef by Billy Idol was my theme song for so long, you’d think that I’d be all about the 1-2 where I get to dance alone except for holding a hand. Remember… don’t go too quickly!
I do indeed think I shall go to see the band at Nick’s Nightclub on Wednesday. I might try to stop by Carlyle Club for a little while, its hard not to being that I could walk or bike there.
One of my guy friends actually expressed an interest in checking out swing dancing. We will probably go to Glen Echo for the free lesson and see how long he can last. Maybe I can even get a posse to go that night. The free lesson will at least teach you the basic footwork! (which as stated earlier is the most important part!)