Ballroom Dance > Getting ready for competition after long hiatus from dancing

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by etp777, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Question is a little strange, but here goes.

    New job is going to have me in kuwait for ~12 months. Due to seeming lack of opportunities for dance there, and a grueling work schedule that will make me miss most opportunities there are (12hrs/wk, working night shift), suspect I'm going to spend that year with little to no dancing. What I'm wondering is if anyone has any input on how long it would take to be ready to compete again? Beginning (well, hopefully intermediate by time I leave for Kuwait) bronze student whose been dancing for about 9 months.

    Looks like i might be getting back at end of October next year, which would give me approximately 6 weeks until next regional competition. Start and end of that, I would be going in every day (in middle, will hopefully have found a job and have to cut back to twice a week for a while), so will be getting in a lot more than my once a week that I do now, but still, only so much can be done in 6 weeks. Anyone ever tried anything like this and have any input? Or is it too much dependant on the teacher and the student, and only way to know will be to wait until next yera and see how it goes week to week?
  2. reb

    reb Active Member


    good luck!

    You have to exercise a little each day anyway, why not add/use basics to your situps, push-ups, stretches?
  3. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Hoping to do that, not sure yet on what type of spaces I'll have access to. will definitely be working out regularly (everyone on night shift does, and friend won't let me skip out on that :) ). Not sure what all I'll be able to do dance wise. And a little hesitant, at least on more complicated steps, as dread idea of practicing something for a year without pro's input, where I might be doing somethihng wrong and get it so drilled into head it's a pain to break the bad habit. :)
  4. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Oh, and thanks. :)
  5. evanluck

    evanluck Member

    Might be worthwhile for you to take a few lessons just working on basic exercises that you could do during your time off.

    That way she could go over them with you and make sure that you are doing them correctly before you leave.

    I spent about a year and a half traveling and not taking lessons and I really felt that I was able to continue my improvement because the lack of new information allowed me to focus on executing the information I had already received.

    If you watch top pros practice, I'm talking world class competitors you would be shocked at how much work they do on their basics.
  6. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Hrmm, that's certainly not a bad idea. May bring it up with her after we get test out of the way. At point now that sure I already know whatever she'd want me to practice, just need her mind to pick out what's best to practice and what's best to leave the heck alone. :) At least, while I'm out of her correcting influence.
  7. delamusica

    delamusica Active Member

    Yeah, you're not likely to find much dancing there. My dad has to go there often for work, and says it's a pretty strange place in that it's very work/business-centered and sort of missing the fun.
  8. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    That's kind of impression i got too. Plus with their views on PDA, etc, can't see dancing happening a whole lot there (if you frown on pda, what are they going to say about a close tango hold?).

    There is some classes and stuff on base there, but I don't know that I'll be able to fit any of them in schedule. Actually, not even sure they're still happening. Found article from june 06 that talked about classes on one base, and another one from june of this year that mentioned a salsa contest on same base, but that's all. And since it's a DoD contract, not strictly army, not exactly sure where I'll be working. Think the idea of having pro work with me on what to practice is going to be key. Luckily, my two main competitors in area should all have moved up at least one level in the next year, so I may luck out and compete uncontested for the first contest back. :)
  9. waltzgirl

    waltzgirl Active Member

    You might want to video her doing the exercises, so you can refer to them to make sure no bad habits are creeping in as you practice over the year.
  10. reb

    reb Active Member

    And evanluck is good, so it works!

    How about DVDs from dancevision, etc?

    Do this on the night shift and you might end up with group practices!
  11. Terpsichorean Clod

    Terpsichorean Clod Well-Known Member

    If you don't have one, a syllabus manual (syllabus figures with alignments, foot positions, footwork, rise/fall, sway, etc.) might be a good tool to bring with you. If FADS is a little protective of their training materials, you might get a hold of the one from Dance Vision. I imagine you'd see a number of common figures in that syllabus.
  12. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Thanks for the suggestion, TC.

    I was "kindly" told yesterday though that I should stay the hell away from them. NOt because of any problem with the manuals, but instead, problems with my own personality quirks, that there's no way I could take manuals and survive a year without people to annoy with quetsions on what is in the manual. :)
  13. Terpsichorean Clod

    Terpsichorean Clod Well-Known Member

    <lol> Haven't they heard of webcams? :razz:
  14. meow

    meow New Member

    IMO, the most important things are keeping your body strong and toned and continuing to work on your basics. Basics are the building blocks that must remain strong and correct. If you can do that then you should be fine.
  15. How long to get back up to speed?

    Those of you who have quit dancing and later picked it up again, how long did it take you to get close to your previous level of skill? How long were you away from dancing? Did much of it come back pretty quick, or was it like starting over from the beginning? Did you enjoy it as much as the first time around?
  16. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    I spent 7 months away from lessons, only practicing semi regularly (maybe twice a week). Not sure how long exactly until I got to point where I was before I left, but did competition 4-5 months after I started again and was defintiely at least as good, and probably a bit better, than I was before I left

    I had been dancing about 11 months when I left, if that matters.
  17. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I truly think it depends upon how well you understand how to use your body in the first place...if you can practice alone to replicate a desired haven't lost it...
  18. suburbaknght

    suburbaknght Well-Known Member

    I feel a drop if I miss even a week without dancing. My friend Craig swears he notices a distinct drop if he goes three or four days.
  19. Laura

    Laura New Member

    I was away from dancing for about 5 months two years ago. It came back very quickly, and I enjoyed it more because not being able to dance for 5 months made it all that more precious to me.
  20. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Heh, thought I had started a thread on this before.

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