Wednesday, June 15, 2011

If the shoe fits...

Part: Follow

Dances: Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot, Quickstep, Night-Club 2
Hovers: 1

For me personally, this was the best practice of the week so far, thanks to Jeff ordering me home early last night, I think. I also didn't lift weights today; just did the cardio machine and stretched. We started practice with a warm up dance and then a round; it was great to have the music again! Waltz and foxtrot are undeniably smoother, and even I could feel Jeff's new Ray Rose shoes, due to the added stability and balance we had with him wearing them. I was so inspired that I decided once and for all I need to retire my flimsy, ripped up Supadance year and a half old shoes as soon as I can, so I'm ordering another pair of Ray Rose shoes myself (the ones in my icon) so that I can start wearing the pair I have now for everyday practice. I find the balance so much better myself, especially for heel turns, so I'm looking forward to converting my "competition shoes" into workhorse every days. It's crazy to think that I'm to a point where I need to have a pair of "everyday" dance shoes as well as a "competition" pair, but that's what it's looking like. I trash my dance shoes, so they can't do double duty.

We worked a lot today on the quickstep rumba cross, for which I was grateful. It always feels iffy to me because of the dramatic shape, speed, and rotation, but Jeff seems to like to grade this particular figure and section with a pass-fail, and he usually thinks it's a pass because we don't wipe out or lose connection, but I still wasn't comfortable with it. Some breaking it down and slower practice today helped a lot, and I figured out some specifics of foot placement for myself that had been fuzzy going full speed and not entirely sure what I was supposed to be doing.

The waltz we danced at the end felt particularly powerful; on one initial spin turn we kind of flew apart because it was too out of control, but we pulled it together and really covered a lot of ground and could both feel the energy. I was driving much better today and using my head weight, as well as taking plenty of time to both lower and drive, and I think that made a big difference. Today too I especially focused on my head position, trying to pretend as though the ceiling is the most exciting thing in the room, but without sticking my chin in the air.

Lighter moments included us performing an "experiment" (which failed, by the way) regarding our practice buddy's inexorable tendency to resort to the spin bikes at a given point in any practice session, a discussion of whether certain male actors were "man's men" or "pretty boys," a description of boar intestine sweet potato sausage, and an argument (which I won) about whether this quickstep was the Victor show quickstep (it wasn't), and Jeff's opening rant about the girl who lolled around on the machines twirling her hair at him while he was trying to get through his work out.

Once again, a good practice, and now we have a bit of a break due to my crazy schedule for the next few days. We're hoping to having something to report over the weekend, so stay tuned!

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