Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Other Side of Dance

Dances:  Foxtrot
Part:  Lead
Workout:  Chest and shoulders at the gym.
Data Rescued From A Bad Hard Drive:  32gb

Another interesting day for the two of us.  The workout went well.  Sarah still struggles greatly with chest exercises.  I think I'm going to have to force her to do next to no weight just to get her form right.  Otherwise it'll be a waste of her time since she's not isolating the correct muscles not to mention dangerous.

Practice today was REALLY short.  I knew it was going to be since we needed to come up with a plan on how to make our practices more effective and focused.  We warmed up with a partial round then worked on the Reverse Wave in foxtrot.  Mostly just getting used to the shaping of it.  I'm not sure why, but I often shape left first then right rather than right then left.  Obviously it's too late once you notice.  But in the end Sarah said it felt really good once I got the order down.  We also dabbled slightly in the Tipsies section of our quickstep, trying out the taking of smaller steps.  It seemed to help somewhat, but it still feels really sluggish.  We have in on our agenda to put the metronome to work on this part.

After that, Sarah and I started discussing ideas on how to get our practices better organized.  We came up with a daily calendar system where we list which dance we want to focus on primarily that day, and which figures or parts within that dance get the attention.  Along with that we've allotted time for warming up, cooling down, stretching, and metronomic practice.  This discussion lead to a "bigger picture" talk between the two of us.  It makes sense that if we're going to start planning out on paper what we want to accomplish in each practice, we need to figure out where all this is headed.  It will most definitely affect what goes on that calendar.  Unfortunately we don't have an answer yet, other than to say ultimately our goals are the same in that we want to dance to the best of our ability.  I'm more of the mind that what we're working on now is really foundational.  It doesn't bother me if I have to take a year or two or five to get it done right.  So for right now I have no immediate goals other than to practice and keep hammering out the nuances of each dance and the figures within.  Sarah had a tough time understanding where I was coming from.  I think she functions better with a specific tangible goal in mind.  I explained to her that I thought that we need to take it one step at a time.  We've now reached a point where a calendar will start to become useful.  Compared to when we first started three months ago when just getting together a couple times a week to practice was useful enough.  In time we'll move onto other aspects that will benefit us.  For now I think the calendar to help organize our practices is key.

One other conversation came up last night, which I think the practice calendar will help out with.  We noticed that it's too easy to get carried away and become spread too thin over life.  Time is almost everything, and if we devote too much time to any one activity it invariably leads to an unbalance in ourselves.  We are both noticing this since we both have large projects we're working on outside of our dance lives.  That calendar should help keep us on track not only in the things we need to work on, but also time.  We can have a clear limit as to how much time we dedicate to our dance life and use the rest of it for our personal agendas.  All this is hypothetical.  We're going to start testing out the calendar tomorrow.  I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

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