Ballroom Dance > multiple teachers/coaches

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by sbrnsmith, Feb 22, 2016.

  1. RiseNFall

    RiseNFall Well-Known Member

    I'm pretty sure her teacher is either independent or the studio owner. In either case, he's in charge.
  2. sbrnsmith

    sbrnsmith Well-Known Member

    No, it's not about dancing the same style with another Pro- it's actually a different style that I don't do with him. And I let him know I am looking at these options with another Pro- and asked if he's ok with that. He said that's fine with him. But it soon became clear it was not ok with him. So now I'm stuck. I think he's being passive aggressive about wanting me to stop dancing with the other guy. But he can't come out and say that for some reason.

    And 3wishes, I've tried having the non emotional convo with him. It didn't work
  3. RiseNFall

    RiseNFall Well-Known Member

    Because he knows he has no right to?

    You're still dancing with the other pro? Just enjoy it and stop worrying about what the other teacher thinks or wants?
    stash likes this.
  4. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    well...that being the case, I would discuss the other guy as little as possible....and if it becomes intolerable because he insists upon interjecting it into a conversation, then I would simply say "you know, when you do this it makes me feel like you are pushing me to choose"...that should stop it...and if it doesn't....then you will in fact have to choose
    sbrnsmith, 3wishes and RiseNFall like this.
  5. FancyFeet

    FancyFeet Well-Known Member

    I feel you... not exactly a secret that pro and I have had a few clashes over the last year, full of conversations that turned emotional, that had taken me to a place where - despite how great pro can be and how much I've learned from him - I was thinking about walking away from him, well aware that might have meant walking away from any hope of having a competitive career.

    After a long a painful road, we're trying something now that I think is working: Basically, decisions are mine to make. And no decision is personal... it's about dance.

    Under our new guidelines, I will:
    1. Tell him I'm thinking about something
    2. Send an e-mail laying out preliminary thoughts and options, and ask for his opinion
    3. Discuss the mattter with him a few days later, then go away and re-think based on his input
    4. When done thinking, inform him of my decision - and may offer a rationale, or may not
    So far we've used this process to discuss a big schedule change and year-long goals, and we're about to hit step 4 on a comp that he proposed (where I'll be informing him I'm not going). It still feels a little stilted, probably because it's new, but it's better than what we had before.

    The biggest shift - I'm no longer asking permission. I keep him in the loop, and really do want his input - which gets serious consideration - but I decide... and live with the consequences.
  6. 3wishes

    3wishes Well-Known Member

    Well, you don't have to ask him if he's ok with it. Your the customer. You have tried, apparently, and ultimately you can choose, you've made attempts to discuss this, your not stuck. Do, for your dancing what makes you happy, it is not up to you to make the pro happy by not stepping on his toes. Hugs.
    Sania, sbrnsmith and stash like this.
  7. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    well, all fair and good, however, that is not always without its consequences so you also have to realize that it may have a negative impact and be willing to adjust accordingly
    stash likes this.
  8. Cal

    Cal Well-Known Member

    I had 2 different periods when I was taking lessons with 2 different independent teachers, sometimes in the same style, and sometimes even swapped back-and-forth between them in the same style at competitions. Of course I let each of them know that I was working with the other one so that they didn't feel blind-sided, but I never asked "permission" about doing it. Also, I didn't play one against the other. And none of them ever tried to make me "choose" – if they had any kind of ego issues about it, they were all way too smart to complain to me. It's not a situation that works for everyone, though.
    ocean-daughter, stash and fascination like this.
  9. DerekWeb

    DerekWeb Well-Known Member

    Many people in my area have two or more teachers, including me and DW. The teachers and studio owners are very respectful of each other and never say anything disparaging about each other. Real professionals. Now, sometime the students change to cause drama, and are disappointed when other students and teachers don't enable it.
  10. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member

    Should is awfully strong. Politely and professionally (ie leaving the emotional drama llama unsaddled in the barn) asking whether there would be an issue with dancing with another pro would seem to be something he would either be okay with, or which he'd have a reason for not being okay with (his ego drama would for me not be a valid reason.)

    Unless an independent pro has only ONE pro-am student, I can't see being independent making any difference. No matter who they work for, they can only dance so many rounds at a comp, and whether they're affiliated with a studio or not they have a right to say "I don't like you taking lessons from X while you take from me." Either way it turns into what is or isn't a deal breaker for the student.
  11. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    Yeah but there is no studio bs, "you take from FA so you can't from AM " type stuff that was my point not rounds or other jealousies
  12. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    Agree DOI with regard to deal breakers. For example some ams have limited geographic availability to pros that are of sufficient calibre for them (raise your hand FF lol ) others of us have more options and a more free form availability to them ( i.e. No contracts or packages required). This will affect what we will deal with or not easier to switch if your pro isn't the only game in town
    SwayWithMe and FancyFeet like this.
  13. sbrnsmith

    sbrnsmith Well-Known Member

    Well, I agree with you, except he has not given me a reason for NOT being ok with...and so on it continues.

    Thank you to all for giving your thoughtful comments and replies. I appreciate it very much.
  14. JudeMorrigan

    JudeMorrigan Well-Known Member

    I will say that while it shouldn't ever be a problem, when there's long-standing tension over a student working with another teacher, it really stinks for the student when those tensions boil over.

    Apropos of nothing, I may not be attending Nationals this year after all.
  15. Newdancer81

    Newdancer81 Active Member

    Okay, I know most people here are very experienced, but my primary studio encourages students who have been there longer for 6 months to have different instructors with one primary instructor. So right now, I have one for all the Latin club styles and another for rumba, cha-cha and swing.
  16. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member

    That sounds more like a franchise/large studio attempt to push brand loyalty over individual loyalty. If they keep you dancing with multiple teachers it reduces the risk of students ending up loyal to the instructor and therefore becoming "flight risks" if he or she leaves. I've never been in a studio with staff where there was a problem taking from another STAFF instructor-the studio gets paid either way in that scenario and everyone can see it's going on. The issue here is unrelated instructors (independents or different studios.) The policies there seem to range from my own experience (which is it's fine as long as everyone knows about everyone else) to instructors "forbidding" it.
    Mr 4 styles likes this.
  17. DanceMentor

    DanceMentor Administrator

    I guess I've lived in two completely different markets. In Atlanta there were not always and that many top competitors for a given division. Just as an example but not exactly the case there were maybe two or three really good American Smooth teachers there that could compete at the highest level and do well with their students. It would be a pretty big deal to see is top student move from one of those teachers to another.

    But in Los Angeles and Orange County there are tons of top teachers to choose from. The very very top teachers are still highly sought after but if one teacher is not doing everything they need to do it is very easy for the student to change to another.

    There are still loyal students to stay with teachers for years, but I think it is a little more common to see students move around and it is almost expected that will happen. A teacher might lose a student but then now easily gain as soon as well. Mainly so long as you are competitive with what is available out there you will get it is no problem.

    I personally feel that it is very good to take from different teachers because they each have their way of teaching that offers a different perspective. Even if you stay with the same teacher for many years, it can be very valuable to at least take some supplementary lessons to see what you might be missing from your current teacher. Other coaches can identify some valuable improvements that your current teacher may have overlooked.

    Definitely one can bounce around too much but if the budget is there and the time is there it can be very worthwhile to try different teachers. There are some amazing people in this world.
    NURDRMS, stash and Mr 4 styles like this.
  18. FancyFeet

    FancyFeet Well-Known Member

    Dislike. Sorry, Jude, that's no fun.
    Sania and stash like this.

    NURDRMS Well-Known Member

    This. For many years I spent nearly 50% of my time in LA and the other half here in Colorado Springs. I have had my main pro for several years here in the Springs but while I traveled to LA so much I also took lessons from another pro there. Both pros were fine with the arrangement, however both knew going in that I only planned to compete with my hometown pro.
  20. Newdancer81

    Newdancer81 Active Member

    Yeah I thought about that too, but at the same time, I think once a student gets comfortable with one instructor, they are still loyal to them regardless. Every student has a favourite.

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