Tango Argentino > close or open embrace

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by aqua, Jan 5, 2010.

  1. aqua

    aqua New Member

    I've been dancing tango now for around 10 months, but I don't understand some stuff.
    Because I don't know the fancy steps, I prefer dancing in close embrace, because there is more feeling and everything is very subtle and smooth for me.
    However... here they dance most of the time in open style. If I do that, it just feels too disconnected and clumsy for me. (women tell me I dance fine though..its just my personal opinion)
    Strange thing is that people say that close embrace is more difficult.

    Well, making a giro or sth requires more balance when in close embrace I noticed.

    Am I the only one that thinks like this or what?
  2. tangonuevo

    tangonuevo New Member

    One problem is that there is no single close embrace. You can dance full on close embrace and each still maintain your own axes, OR you can dance leaning on each other so that you would fall without your partner.

    These each require different skills and each present their own sets of problems. As a lead, I find that close embrace with a leaning partner is more difficult than with a partner who manages her own balance.
  3. chrisjj

    chrisjj New Member

    The more classes people have done, the more they find close embrace to be difficult. Most close-embrace dancers have done zero or few classes.
  4. chanchan

    chanchan Member

    I think that some things are easier with close embrace, others with open embrace: open embrace is easier for focusing on yourself (doing your moves correctly, controlling your axis, etc.), closed embrace, especially if leaning, is easier for focusing on your partner (controlling her axis, her position, knowing where is her weight, and for the follower - i think - it is easier to understand what the leader wants).
    So, in a very first stage of learning, when you have to think to yourself and you don't care so much of leading, i think that open embrace is easier.
    But as soon as you start dancing real tango, which basically means leading, following, improvising, staying on the music, close embrace is easier.
    A higher connection, brings higher ease to lead and follow.
    On the other hand, with close embrace, especially if leaning, fancy steps are usually more diffcult, because you need more dissociation, balance, etc.
  5. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    No, you are not the only one who thinks this way. Everyone is different. Some things that are easier for one person can be harder for a different person.

    BTW, Welcome to the forum.
  6. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member



    say what?
  7. chrisjj

    chrisjj New Member

    What's unclear?
  8. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member

    Your rather bold assumption... I'm just wondering what your basis for it is.

    <<<Most close-embrace dancers have done zero or few classes.>>>>
  9. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    Basically, whether your prior post was serious or not.
  10. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member

    Ah... a joke.. never occurred to me.
    ok.. HAHA, good one, Chris

    Thanks for translating, D. ;)
  11. chrisjj

    chrisjj New Member

    No assumption.

    Observation over approx. 10,000 hours in milongas.
  12. Zoopsia59

    Zoopsia59 Well-Known Member

    Every close embrace dancer I know has taken tango classes. Some have taken many, some few, some take primarily privates, some take classes geared specifically to CE. But I don't know a single capable CE tango dancer who has NEVER had a class (or only a few) especially if you are referring to LEADERS.

    The number of classes does not seem to have any correlation with whether CE or OE is easier... it depends more on which one starts with I think, as well as many other issues.

    How can you tell by simply watching someone that they have or haven't taken any classes? Some people take lots of classes and still suck, others take few and are great. And some take many and are great, while others suck because they haven't had many lessons yet, although they may become quite good.

    It still seems to me to be a rather big generalization (and false) to say that CE dancers have taken few or no classes. It might be true where you are that the CE dancers aren't taking classes, but its hardly true everywhere.

    I do agree that the longer someone takes classes in open embrace without ever trying close, the harder it might get to transition. But the same can probably be said for the opposite as well. Habit is a powerful force.
  13. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    I completely agree with you.

    If you dance CE connection is more important, you must feel the partner.
    When having class we generally try it open first, then turn to close embrace.

    I started OE, later danced CE, forgot OE, now when dancing with beginners I use OE.

    Final step is OE CE transitions :cool:
  14. Mladenac

    Mladenac Well-Known Member

    It depends what how you have been taught.

    When following in OE you must focus on these:
    1. energy that you receive on your left hand. (to keep the distance)
    2. leaders chest with eyes contact or glance to his shoulders (to know what is leading)
    3. his arms (when leading circular movements e.g. giros)

    To differ a giro from a pivot focus does he use hands for circular movement (giro),
    or only his chest for performing pivot.

    Also when doing giros in CE, your CE tends to be loosened a bit by extending you shoulder, or just loosening your embrace a bit.

    CE have pros and cons when done in proper way.
    posture and technique performed in CE, I hope that you don't dance CE by just moving your bodies closer.
  15. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the DF..... Chan Chan and Chrisjj.
  16. wadpro

    wadpro Member

    In general I prefer to dance with open embrace because I can do more combinations with open embrace, and its more compartable for me, and I dont wanna dance with everyone very close(skin to skin, sweat to sweat). But if I find a woman very attractive and if the music is suitable I prefer close embrace. However if the dance floor is too crowded close embrace is mandatory :)
  17. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    I have discovered that blues dancers use close embrace but they offset the feet rather than lean forwards
  18. Captain Jep

    Captain Jep New Member

    No Im also of that opinion. However like you most of the locals here dance open embrace so sometimes you have to swim with the tide :rolleyes:.

    I'd expect your opinion from someone who'd been dancing a lot longer than you have. Next you'll be telling us that close embrace is the only "real" tango wont you? lol :p
  19. chrisjj

    chrisjj New Member

    Do you know any close embrace dancers in Buenos Aires?
  20. dchester

    dchester Moderator Staff Member

    I guess I'm still not sure if this post was serious or not, but if it was serious, then I'll just say it is counter to my experiences. If this was true, then I would conclude that these people should find a competent teacher in CE, if the classes really made it more difficult for them.

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