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Re: Heel Leads
Posted by Doug
8/25/2007  1:13:00 PM
The timing of the NT in waltz is not as simple as you make it seem. In the passing natural you have a foot position on three followed by a body position on the (and)' an equal spacing on all the beats and half beats,this is not the case with the NT which does not have a foot position on three as the foot is already in place so this gives you an extra half beat that has to be used up somewhere?
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by Serendipidy
8/25/2007  6:05:00 PM
Doug. First who said we are talking about a Natural Turn. Get the basic Closed Change right first. This is the most misunderstood part and that is at the end of the first step on the count of and, the foot, in this case, the LF is under the body , The right knee is flexed and it flexed as the weight of the body arrived over that standing leg. Now we are ready to swing onto step two. This is our second drive. Now do it wrong to prove a point. After the RF is in position swing the LF from behind out to the side for step two. Once upon a time that would have been the way it was taught. Not any more. Anybody who has been to a Andrew Sinkinson class will bear me out that he will have you lift that left leg completely from the floor after it arrives along side the RF. Put it down and from a bent right knee send the LF onto step two. We are still rising and will continue to rise on step three. Which when you think about it is not a step. Take my word for it I have seen a group of some fourty couples tranformed in a few minutes from a blunt 1 2 3 to 1 and 2 and 3 and . And do you know it is most likely on any DVD you may have on the Modern Waltz. Just take a closer look and also listen to the instructions.
Whilst i am on this subject. why are people so obsessed with the moving foot which is the one in front. The important foot is the one you are standing on soon to be the rear . Every tape I have Modern or Latin says dance from foot to foot. Do that and let the moving foot look after itself. If the heel lead isn't as good as it should be then let the teacher tell you. Ball flat in Latin. All of the about is as I have been insructed or told. Good luck when this technique is put into the Natural Turn.
One more most important thing is exactly at what time does the heel of the standing foot starts to leave the floor. Where is the moving foot at this time.
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by anymouse
8/25/2007  8:12:00 PM
" One more most important thing is exactly at what time does the heel of the standing foot starts to leave the floor. Where is the moving foot at this time."

For a rising step, the worlds leading coaches teach that the heel MUST break from the floor slightly BEFORE the other foot passes.

For a non-rising step they teach that the heel rises only after the foot has passed, because they stay in a relatively lowered position when they do this.

Many people initially believe this contradicts the text books, but in fact it does not - the text books illustrate the actions of a walking exercise executed at standing height, not the action of any real dance step which will either be executed with a rising action, a falling action, or at a lower height than this exercise. Real dance steps are all modifications from that starting point, with different details.
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by Serendipidy
8/26/2007  4:17:00 PM
We have to split hairs here and go into more detail. Is the first step on beat one in a Modern Waltz a rising step. Commence to rise at the end of one. We are down at the end of one before we commence to rise. If this is a Natural Turn ,first three, our second step is low still rising. Lets not forget that at the same time the lady has no foot rise on one NFR. So where is the moving foot in relation to the standing foot at the end of step one before step two is taken.
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by anymouse
8/26/2007  6:13:00 PM
"Is the first step on beat one in a Modern Waltz a rising step. Commence to rise at the end of one. We are down at the end of one before we commence to rise."

You forget that the official "rise and fall" only includes some components of change to the body alititude, not all of them.

There is actually a net gain of altititude occuring before the official commencement of rise in the feet which you have quoted.

"If this is a Natural Turn ,first three, our second step is low still rising."

Still rising yes, but starting from a point already somewhat above the lowest depth that was reached during the downswing.

"Lets not forget that at the same time the lady has no foot rise on one NFR."

Nonethless, she does have rise, though not in the form of raising her heel nor quite as much in amount as her partner.

"So where is the moving foot in relation to the standing foot at the end of step one before step two is taken."

At the dividing line between step 1 and step 2 it is parallel, but the simple fact is that the heel should already have broken free there. The action of the foot rise begins within the ending of step one, not straddling the dividing line between step 1 and step 2.

Also bear in mind that the body will be ahead of the closing foot here - the body will already be passing beyond the standing foot, a little before the moving foot finally passes the standing one. In effect, the body is already swing on up into step two, before the feet have quite completed the offical program of step one.

Also, the inital breaking free of the heel during the ending of step one (before the feet pass) is not so much about foot rise as it is about the natural carry through of the weight from the toe to the heel. The same thing would happen on a feather step in foxtrot, where the corresponding action for the lady is clearer: she will be rolling her weight into her heel and should be just about to see her toe break free from the floor - something that technically must happen by the time her moving ball of foot passes her standing heel.
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by anymouse
8/25/2007  8:17:00 PM
"with the NT which does not have a foot position on three as the foot is already in place so this gives you an extra half beat that has to be used up somewhere?"

Actually this is incorrect.

Step 3 begins when the foot is only halfway closed. As a result, there is still movement of the foot to be accomplished during the period of step three.

Reality is further confusing though: this portion of the period of step three will customarily take place during the second half of beat 2, such that the foot arrives ready to take weight sometime around the strike of beat 3.

In terms of using up all of beat three - some is used as your complete the rise, some is used as you lower, and some is used as you move the other foot towards the next step one, so that it can arrive on that beat.
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by anymouse
8/21/2007  7:22:00 PM
"You asked for an exercise. This may sound silly but you could try pushing a very heavy wheelbarrow. This will help because the heavy wheelbarrow will make it impossible for you to move in a choppy way. you will get the feeling of your body moving continuously and smoothly forward while you legs and feet work underneath you"

Phil, this has a kernel of great insight in it.

What the wheelabarrow does is give you a resistance to work against, and encourage you to fully commit your weight and drive into the movement without holding back.

Most beginner and intermediate dancers won't get the opportunity to do that, because the've already gotten ahead of themselves and must try to slow their body down at a time when they really should be driving.

When the dancer develops enough skill to draw out the preceding lowering action, then they will have the opportunity to drive into the next heel lead - instead of already going to fast, they will be needing to speed slightly with an actual drive. Instead of external resistance in a wheelbarrow, the small but critical resistance will be coming from the inertia of pushing to accelerate their own body.

If you feel like you you need to put on the brakes during a heel lead step, well that's evidence that you've gotten yourself moving too fast too soon. There's nothing within the realm of proper technique that you can do to fix it this time around, only try to draw out the preceding step more in the next measure.
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by jwlinson
8/21/2007  10:20:00 PM
Perhaps I should elaborate...

"rolling" was my terminology, not theirs. Anymouse, your description:

"When the movement is done properly, the ball of the foot directly follows the heel - you very nearly are placing the whole foot, because the "just heel" time is very short."

is probably a better description. It describes what I am doing.

my bad.

J
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by Doug
8/22/2007  4:53:00 AM
Anymouse. If I understand what you are saying,in order to get that long two in the waltz N.T. we should slow down or take more time on the preperation step or the end of a preceding step.
Re: Heel Leads
Posted by Serendipidy
8/24/2007  10:53:00 PM
Where are your teachers. These are the very first steps we ever take . Find a good DVD. Look and see how the weight arrives under the body and if you are counting , on what count. Look to see how much the knee has bent as the weight arrives on it. That must take some moment of time to get that compression. Do you agree. Now do you swing on two and sway on three. Richard Gleave and John Wood will tell you on their videos. Both of which are still available. Guys this is just the first three steps. If they are not done correctly what hope is there for the rest of your routines.
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