Forum: General / Ballroom / Ballroom

Ballroom
Need help on softening my ballroom dancing?
By Freestyle1109 Comments: 15, member since Tue Sep 03, 2013
On Sat Sep 14, 2013 07:38 AM

I recently started ballroom after being a gymnast for 9 years. All my movements are very stiff. Does anyone have any tips on how to relax your body??? All help appreciated! #

4 Replies to Need help on softening my ballroom dancing?

re: Need help on softening my ballroom dancing?
By Coral_B_2013member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 39, member since Mon Sep 30, 2013
On Mon Sep 30, 2013 02:51 AM
I asked the same thing of my coach, who also happens to be my father, Australian ballroom dancing icon, and world champion from the 70s, John Thornton. Tip, don't lock your knees. If you watch Fred Astaire movies, you will see that he has a very low centre of gravity. He is always slightly bent at the knees, and carries his tension in his torso. His other body parts (arms, legs, and head) are all loose, meaning that the tension can be carried quickly from his torso through to his extremities. This means that he can be very quick and sharp with his movements in the rest of his body. Just a tip that my Dad shared with me the other day. This MIGHT help improve your dancing.
re: Need help on softening my ballroom dancing?
By Freestyle1109 Comments: 15, member since Tue Sep 03, 2013
On Mon Sep 30, 2013 02:57 PM
Thank-you I will deffinatley try this do you have any videos of dancers you think might be worth watching? X
re: Need help on softening my ballroom dancing?
By Coral_B_2013member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 39, member since Mon Sep 30, 2013
On Mon Sep 30, 2013 04:46 PM
www.youtube.com . . .

This is one of my favourite Fred Astaire dance scenes, from the movie Royal Wedding. If you watch him especially in the latter part of the scene, you some quite sharp moves coming from his arms. You will notice most of the time he has his knees bent.

www.youtube.com . . .

And other favourite scene of mine from Royal Wedding. www.youtube.com . . .

Again, low centre of gravity (bent at the knees), tension all carried in the torso. Allows for great kinetic reflexes. (Kinetic reflexes: a postural response resulting from stimulation of the vestibular apparatus. It happens for example, when somebody pushes you off balance and your feet automatically step into the right position to keep you from falling over.) So if your partner suddenly has to change choreography to get you out of a tight spot, they need to be able to guide you. If your knees are all stiff and your tension is all in the wrong places other than your torso, your reflexes wont be as quick. So if your partner has to make a sudden change in choreography, and pushes you in another direction other than the one you were expecting, you might trip over your feet :)

I have only just gotten back to dancing after 7 years, so back in ballroom and Ballet. But these tips come straight from my father, and from two of his coaches, one who was 9x world champion, and the other 13x world champion. This is straight from the horse's mouth so to speak.

Happy dancing!!
re: Need help on softening my ballroom dancing?
By Freestyle1109 Comments: 15, member since Tue Sep 03, 2013
On Tue Oct 01, 2013 12:40 AM
Thanks, you've been very helpful! I will deffinatley be watching the videos! X

ReplySendWatch