After eleven years living, dancing, teaching tango, and writing in Buenos Aires, I came home to L.A. in 2014, where I'm reconstructing my life.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Learning By Looking II

Here are some more examples of how we can learn by looking at photos, in our goal to become self-correcting.

The guy above has got that right leg far outside the "couple," making him vulnerable to losing his balance and/or tripping someone beside him on the floor. But just look at how he's torquing his body, using way too much force on his poor partner.

No comment here, and not any elegance either.

Another guy stepping far outside of his partner. Legs wide apart can work vertically, in long steps, for example, but can be disastrous when horizontally out to the side.

Weight on only one leg: check.
One straight leg and one bent knee: check.
But this type of pose looks affected and fake. And somebody could trip on that toe pointed so nicely outside of the couple's space.

Tango isn't hard, but it's not simple either. No es dificil, pero tampoco no es facil.


Mari said...

omg- no. 2 picture looks like me (okay, not technically me) but I know I've done that. My teacher calls it walking like a cowboy. I can hear her voice when I catch myself doing it, "thighs together! thighs together!! Collect!" oy... after so many months, why is that such a hard thing to fix??

Posting that picture gives me an excellent visual to try to train myself with. It's also a great post overall. Keep 'em coming! :)

Anonymous said...

Ha! I will never forget the advice I was given at my first London milonga. I danced with an experienced gentleman and afterwards he politely asked me if he could give me one little bit of advice. I said yes. He said, keep the knees together. That was it. Sound advice and nicely presented. He is one of my favorite dancers today.

Alex Long said...

Hola Cheri...when I was at the 1 yr mark, I set up my camera on a tripod and set it to take about 8 frames per second (video is 30 frames per second) and then I started dancing with my partner. After looking at the photos, there were some very glaring things I needed to seriously work on and rein in. I remember saying to myself "what is my foot doing way out there!?" can be a very helpful tool...

thanks for this!

tangocherie said...

Alex, this is a fabulous learning tool! Bravo!
I hope others take your idea and run with it.

Then we can see if our "knees are together" or not, right London?

Anonymous said...

@ Cherie,
Knees together, collect, and stand like a queen. All good advice and I am always conscious of doing those things.
Just saw myself in a video taken by Amor. I think I need to work on my arms more!! Otherwise not too bad. Film can be a good or bad thing, depending on how you look at it!!