ˌrēˈɡrō/ verb/ gerund or present participle: Regrowing "to grow or be grown anew or continued growth after an injury or after having died or withered"

Tango this is Control…

So, some friends and I get together on Wednesday evenings to learn to dance.. well some of them pretty much know how to do it all, so they end up teaching the rest of us. So far, we have pretty much stayed in the Latin arena of dance styles, which is perfectly fine with me! Let me break this down for you a bit more…

Salsa is a blast, it’s fun and there’s lots to do (assuming your partner knows how to do it of course). It includes a lot of spinning and fun twists… which for someone like me ends up just being a blast. The footwork can be a challenge, but quickly feels natural if you have someone there helping you at first. This is easy to follow.. but also easy to anticipate what’s coming.. which can be a problem.. 🙂

Cha Cha is a lot of fun, but I’m not the best at it yet. Pretty much I can do the correct steps, and for the most part though I know it well enough to follow, I don’t know it well enough to help someone else.

There are a couple others we have learned too, the Meringue and the Cumbia… Which are simple and fun.. but all have their own little quirks and challenges.

And then there’s the Tango… This dance is deceptively hard. It’s slower than the rest, and has no set moves or starting place. While all of these dances can be done just holding hands or together in proper form or hold or whatever you call it. The Tango is SO much easier done when you’re together and his hand is on your back. So… here are some of the things I’m learning from Tango.. 🙂 Hope you enjoy haha…

To start out, in Tango I cannot do anything unless he moves me. No footwork, no pivots, no shifting of my weight… nothing. He literally has to shift and move me anytime we are supposed to move. When you are watching someone else do it, it looks so graceful and sweet… Not necessarily easy, but it just looks like both people know what’s coming and can move as one. When you are doing it yourself, you realize how hard it actually is. As the girl, I have no idea where we are going next at all. No set move is supposed to follow, and almost any of the moves can be done after almost any of the moves…

If I try anticipating, it simply stops working. I stumble, he stumbles over me, our frame is broken because of my essential arguing with what he’s trying to do. It’s pretty obvious when the girl anticipates and stops letting the guy lead…

But, on the opposite end, if I do my role in the dance, I give him the resistance in the frame he needs to be able to glide us around the floor. I use him as balance, which allows him to shift my weight and move me, and we begin to then move gracefully.

So.. sounds nice enough… easy enough… Right. Thus enter control… Tango allows me no control. Nothing that even resembles control. The only thing I get to do is offer my balance, weight, and resistance in the frame, the rest is just allowing myself to be moved. It is SO HARD. Part of what makes it so hard is the fact that Tango is supposed to be slower, I mean it CAN be faster, but it’s a much slower dance than Salsa or Cha Cha. So, with it being slower, anticipating is even more impossible. I have the hardest time just simply allowing myself to be moved… Haha, the parallels here are almost endless… I won’t go into them, at least not now.

So, how do I cope? I close my eyes. LOL… Ok so, I don’t close my eyes to block anything out, I close my eyes so I can no longer anticipate, and fighting him becomes something I have to do consciously instead of something I do out of habit. I can’t look him in the eyes and see what’s coming, I simply have to feel and move. Anticipating what could come becomes almost impossible. Waiting is easier because I can’t see, and the little signals he gives are suddenly the only signals I can pay attention to because I can’t rely on my sight. I think I relax more when my eyes are closed. I end up having to pay less attention to things that are my comfort zone (sight), and more attention to things I take for granted (touch and sound)…

So, I’m learning to Tango… Or, in other words, I’m learning to let go of control and be moved… It’s harder than anyone realizes, and I have no idea how hard it is for the guy to lead…

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This entry was posted on July 2, 2009 by in Control, Dancing.
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