Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Gettin' hep with the beat.

My lower back was aching yesterday so instead of belaboring my wonky Mohawk, I suggested to coach A. that we work on the beginning of the Fiesta Tango--the day before, during an empty public session, I found myself unable to correctly remember the opening optional steps which she'd taught me months ago.  And so we did; at first me following her a pace behind, then solo with her watching from the boards, and finally partnered.

It was soon apparent that part of my problem was due to timing rather than lousy memory.  The dance starts off with a pair of 2-beat strokes but those are followed by a pair of 1-beat steps and then another 2-beat step during the progressive which leads to the cross in front/cross behind steps.  Those first two progressive steps really seem quite quick, coming on the heels of the slower two beat steps which start the dance.  But, it is this ebb and flow of timing which,in part, gives the dance a tango expression.  This slow-fast-slow timing signature reappears during the end pattern.

I also needed to flatten out the lobe of the progressive and keep it closer to the boards so that I'd not go way off pattern during the cross in front/cross behind steps. 

We next skated the dance to music, which surprisingly helped me rather than being a distraction.  We finished up working on the end pattern which of course features the Mohawk turn.  Once again she bought to my attention the change in timing from the 2-beat LFO stroke through the pair of 1-beat steps which are the Mohawk, to the three 2-beat steps which make up the back progressive.  In an effort to get through the Mohawk, I was slowing the Mohawk but rushing the progressive.  I need to do just the opposite.  In a backhanded way this is good for me since the Mohawk is my weakness.  I must remind myself that I only have to hold those problematic edges for one beat each and then have the luxury of two beats to get through the back progressive with body language which suggests a smidgen of control!

After the lesson was over and I was walking out the door to the car, I noticed that my back didn't hurt quite as much.  Who knows, maybe this Tango thing will help work a couple of kinks out as we dance our way to spring!


  1. George, I love the way doing the Fiesta tango put spring in your step. The music does make a huge difference--if nothing else, in making us forget about our aches and pains. Tango on, bro!

  2. So do I! My daughter and I went to a mid-day public yesterday (I'm furloughed from the fed gov)and don't cha know it, my coach was there with a student (always wondered what she does with her time that's not devoted to me!). Anyway, after that kid's lesson was over she agreed to give me one since she had no other students lined up and we were both there with another 40 minutes or so left in the session. So, I was able to double dip on lessons this week. Hopefully the shutdown won't drag on long enough to force me to choose between paying important bills and ice time/lessons!

  3. Glad you got another lesson in, but oh no! Here's hoping thing resolve soon and you're back on payroll (aka "skating lesson pipeline").