Forum: Irish / Irish - Champs

Wanting to qualify for worlds
By worldchampion
On Fri Jul 20, 2012 04:38 AM

Ok so basically after my great All Irelands (12th place), Nationals was supposed to be the day I FINALLY qualified for worlds after three years of being incredibly close... but everything possible went wrong: I fell in treble jig, tripped in what was almost the greatest slip jig I've ever done, and then missed a ton of clicks and messed up the end of my set. I ended up in 42nd which was still only 9 away from worlds. My question is this: What should I really focus on for oireachtas this year? I honestly really want to try and win but my terrible nationals has kinda taken all the practicing drive i had and thrown it in the trash. Anything that you guys can give me would help. I know my dance teachers think it's possible, and so do I if I can get myself to start working on things but I don't even know where to start.... Help me :(

8 Replies to Wanting to qualify for worlds

re: Wanting to qualify for worlds (karma: 1)
By OMGjaimyemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Fri Jul 20, 2012 05:28 AM
Go back to basics and brush up on your simple skills. Trips and falls are oftentimes unavoidable, not really something that you can control, but having consistency definitely IS. Really focus on your posture, arms, pointing your toes as hard as you can, pushing your turn out from the hips, etc. All things that you already know, of course. But sometimes, we get so caught up in the goal that we forget the little things that are SO important.

If you missed a 'ton' of clicks, do 100 on each side every day until you miss none. Practice the end of your set, and any other piece of any other steps, that you have trouble with until there's no question that you could do it perfectly in your sleep. If you're having trouble with specific "tricks", ask your TC if you can take them out and replace them with simpler, clean steps. It's been said a million times, and we all know its true even though we resist the idea, but a judge would rather see simpler steps danced perfectly than tricker steps danced subpar. Get a video camera out and have someone film you while practicing. Small things like slightly bent knees or a rounded upper back are much more noticeable on camera as opposed to just watching yourself in the mirror. Have your dance mates, TCs, parents, anyone watch and see if they notice anything that doesn't look quite right.

You might even try changing up your look a bit too! That always gives me a boost of confidence. Switch wig styles, use a flower instead of tiara, try some different makeup. When you feel like you're in a competitive rut, sometimes something as simple as that can get you out of it.

Definitely the best piece of advice I've ever gotten (and can give you in return!) is to commit 100% to being consistent with your steps and practicing like it's your job! You know what you need to do to get where you want to be, so get in front of the mirror and get it done! :)
re: Wanting to qualify for worlds
By Louisemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Fri Jul 20, 2012 08:48 AM
^ To add to the above:

but my terrible nationals has kinda taken all the practicing drive i had and thrown it in the trash

That's emotion talking. You had a bad day!!! A bad day. Doesn't mean you're back to square one just because you had one bad day. Everything you had before is still in your legs, you just didn't perform very well on one day. It's not a case of going back to the drawing board. In fact, it's probably just a mental thing. You slipped in your jig and that's probably caused a domino effect (how many clichés can one woman use in one post) and made you lose confidence for the slip jig. Then you messed that up too, so you subconsciously were expecting your set to be rubbish - and then it happened.

You need to work on treating each round as a fresh start and putting the last round behind you. Tennis players do this marvellously - they put each point, each game, each set behind them. That's how they can come back from 6-0 4-0 down to win the match in three sets. I've seen people have a horrible heavy round (comparatively) and then come back to storm the other two. It's all about how you approach it.
re: Wanting to qualify for worlds
By monkeybiz329member has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Fri Jul 20, 2012 01:09 PM
Wow, I had the exact same thing happen to me at NANs this year! My goal was to qualify for worlds, but I didn't have a good 2 rounds and I didn't even recall, which was a huge disappointment. I had to reevaluate my dancing and my mindset, which is when I realized that it really was a mental thing.

You were probably a nervous wreck going in because you put so much pressure on yourself to qualify. That caused you to push yourself harder than you would in practice, which put you off-balance and caused you to fall. Then, like Louise said, that affected your second and third rounds. I second that it's all in your head!

You may want to reevaluate your goals for Oireachtas. Sure, it would be great to win, but if you put all that pressure on yourself, you'll only be satisfied with the top place. I know it's tough in a sport where we're constantly compared to the next girl, but why not only worry about yourself? If you focus on dancing your best instead of beating everyone else, you'll put less pressure on yourself and dance better. I hope that helps.
re: Wanting to qualify for worlds
By irishdanceJ51
On Thu Jul 26, 2012 06:57 PM
I wouldn't put yourself down about the trips and falls. I tripped early in my reels also. But the stages a Nationals were really sticky, I'm sure that it was just a bad day.
re: Wanting to qualify for worlds
By worldchampion
On Fri Jul 27, 2012 05:40 AM
Thanks guys. I think I'm just really pushing myself to be where I want to and I'm just getting myself down when I don't get there as fast as I want to... My teachers consistently remind me to get rid of the ifs in my mind.
re: Wanting to qualify for worlds
By cmdc
On Fri Jul 27, 2012 05:02 PM
Do you feel that you did not do well at nationals because you were emotionally not ready or centered? I don't feel like your dancing is really what's holding you back, but potentially your emotional side. That's what I'm reading in your message. I think that should be your primary concern, is learning how to be a rock solid dancer no matter what happens. If you mess up that first round, don't let it get to you, and so much that it continues to mess you up in every other round. Perfect example are the gymnasts competing in the olympics. If they had a stumble in the beginning of their balance beam routine, they have to pull it together mentally to be able to finish the routine without further errors.
re: Wanting to qualify for worlds
By MilkMaid
On Fri Jul 27, 2012 09:31 PM
You may want to talk to a sports pyshcologist. Obviously you have the talent (12th at All Irelends!!) but this was a competition you *knew* wasn't a qualifier. I think you are pushing so hard at the qualifiers that it makes you mess up like falling. Even through chosing your username you've put pressure on your dancing to live up to it. Your dancing at the qualifiers should be the same as at practice, not better or different. Best of luck to you!
re: Wanting to qualify for worlds
By worldchampion
On Sat Jul 28, 2012 08:41 PM
I know most of my issues from underperforming come from having major lack of confidence and never feeling good enough to get what I want. Recently though I can only make it through one step in hardshoe before I die... I pulled my quad in may and I don't know if it's because my thighs aren't strong enough anymore or what but it's just adding to my frustration... It's not like I'm out of breath or anything, my muscles just give up on me... And it only happens in treble jig! I can make it through planxty drury no problem

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