Seemingly small things make a world of difference in how you look and how you feel when dancing. Perfect technique is a life long journey. Whatever path you take on that journey, these super 7 essential tips on Ballroom & American Smooth will help you along the way.
1. Make stable and clean looking moves by controlling the path of your legs
When Dancing, Track your feet under your body, brush your thighs, however you want to say it, save ronde moves for true rondes in choreography, and never compromise your look or balance with a wayward leg.
2. Take large steps by not stepping
~Bend your knees low and forward before you move.
~Think of sliding instead of stepping, and travelling by moving your hips and torso across the floor, which will keep your legs moving in time with your body and not before.
~In heel leads, delay lifting your heel for as long as you can and you will look more powerful without looking like it is an effort.
3. Keep your swing dances smooth by keeping your feet on the ground
Keep both feet in contact with the floor at all times for continuous elegant movement. This will reduce clunks and jerks, and will make a world of difference how refined your dancing appears.
4. Maintain poise and posture by straightening the natural curves of your spine, which will then elongate you
~Keep your belly button pulled in, your hips up not pushed back, your shoulder blades down, and chest down, collected and flat, not puffed out.
~Add a firm core and you are good to go.
5. Hold your partner, rather than simply attaching yourself
~In typical holds and hugs, your arms are in a rounded position to extend around another person.
~Continue to think “round” in your ballroom hold, and never squeeze, pull or push.
~Always keep your arms in front of you.
~Your elbows should be strong and in a static position relative to your arms.
~This will keep your connection more stable and your partner much happier.
6. Side leads will help you glide
~Objects that are designed to move well and maneuver quickly are designed to be aerodynamic, not boxy or flat.
~Think of making yourself more aerodynamic on the floor as well. With this in mind, moving with a side lead will be your only realistic option.
7. The followers’ stretch truly is a stretch, not a bend
~Shoulders are down, sides are elongated and only the top of the spine is extended back.
~This extension is amplified to a beautiful stretch by keeping your neck long, straight and positioned over your left arm, and your nose positioned in line with your left elbow.
~It is such a beautiful position, you will want to be able to do it for a lifetime. By doing it correctly, you will do it safely, and will show this beautiful line for a long time to come.
There is so much more that can make a ballroom dance beautiful, and more that can be said about each of these points. Remembering each one of the points here will give everything else a great base.
Author: Miss P
North Shore Dance Society