Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Technique and Tips

I have been asked to occasionally write up something about Ballroom and/or Latin Technique and discuss common mistakes and how to correct them. Wow, now I wonder where I should begin! Well now let us start with the some of the basic principles in the Ballroom section. First of all we have Basic Natural Turns and Basic Reverse Turns. Natural Turns turn to the right or clockwise and Reverse Turns turn to the left or counter clockwise. In the Waltz and Slow Foxtrot the Basic Natural and Reverse Turns have six steps or foot positions – on the first three steps the man dances around the lady and on the second three step the lady dances around the man. In order to progress counter clockwise around the ballroom (L.O.D.) all Natural Turns must be danced towards the outside of the ballrooms and all Reverse Turns should be dance toward the center of the ballroom. Both of these turns are connected by (a) in Waltz, Closed Changes (b) in Slow Foxtrot, Feather Step or Three Step.

In the Quickstep the Natural Turn can only be danced at a corner but if danced with hesitation then it can be danced along side of the room or at a corner. The Reverse Turn, known as the Chasse Reverse was modified several years ago and the Heel Pivot on the second half was replaced by the Progressive Chasse – otherwise it would still have 6 steps or foot positions. Note that the basic Quickstep of Quarter Turn to Right and Progressive Chasse follows the same rule of progression – you start facing the outside edge of the ballroom, you step forward and make a quarter turn to the right, you then step back toward the center of the ballroom and make a quarter turn to the left.

In the Tango there are 3 Reverse Turns having six steps – the Basic Reserve Turn, Reverse Turn Lady in line, and Reverse Turn Lady outside. There is NO Basic Natural Turn in the Tango.

Viennese Waltz? Well we will save that one for another time!

Any questions or requests or to book a private lesson please contact me (808) 955-3134 or email

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