General Dance Discussion > Social Dancing with More Advanced Dancers

Discussion in 'General Dance Discussion' started by Wyndstorm Huntress, Dec 15, 2007.

  1. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    The very point I have been trying to make. I apologise for my lack of skill. Perhaps I dance too muc and talk too little (angel sniggering beside me).
  2. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    Err, yes she was. Or what was the point of her asking me to dance. Obviously wasn't to chat (she didn't).
  3. wooh

    wooh Well-Known Member

    Maybe she wanted to entertain you? Or was being polite? Or felt sorry for you? Lots of possibilities!
  4. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    Which is why we often see top competitors sweating so much. Oh wait, that's not what you meant.
    I have many videos of top competitors just after a dance and they are streaming with sweat. Must be all that relaxing I suppose, takes a lot of effort to relax. I try to dance like the proverbial duck, calm on the surface, working like crazy underneath (just love that picture)
  5. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    For some reason I doubt many people ask more than once.
  6. and123

    and123 Well-Known Member

    oh, snap! :cool:
  7. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    Ah. I see, so your payoff is not energy, but looks (or fascinating in another way). Many of the ladies I dance with are way older than I (46 versus 66), wrinkled crinkled and show the experience of their years and find that they are ignored by the younger dancers even though (in some cases) they dance far better which can upset them greatly. Give me ability rather than looks. Of course my wife is both (and she ain't even reading this post, I did said all by myself).

    Summary - your priority is looks, mine is energy. No substantive difference. Some people may consider that approach considerably more reprehensible than mine. So my approach upsets some people, your approach upsets people in the social world.

    If I may be so bold as to quote you from an earlier post
    'I'm convinced that D-spot is, indeed, not an advanced dancer, as he approaches partner dancing from the wrong perspective - an advanced male dancer looks after the lady first and foremost'
    Preferencing others than the old and ugly ones is not looking after the lady first and foremost.
    'I am sick and tired of seeing what those ladies get put through.'
    Again one of your comments, taken slightly out of context (see page 19 for full context). I'm afraid that I only have one character, the same for everyone. I ask for something anyone can give effort. I do not ask for the impossible to dance with someone. A hag can never be young and pretty again. I know direct from some of these ladies how hurtful such an approach can be, and I have seen how frequently they have to suffer that way. I don't play favourites (except SO of course).

    I have danced with another poster (Elisedance). On that night I was helping out another studio (not mine, no financial incentive, no nothing, just becasue I try to be nice in my own way). She was on another table across the floor. I took the time and effort to go over and ask her to dance. The dance was fine (cha-cha I believe), she put effort in, happy to dance with her again. Beginners I wsas sitting with, got them to dance, encouraged them to dance with my wife (a fine danceer, even if I do say so myself), all to encourage them to continue to dance and have fun. All of them gave me effort in return. I had a good night. Some of them may have felt out of control, but the reality was that they were not (quite). The studio owner thanked me and said the feedback was very positive. I always make a point of getting feedback were possible. One or two were young and pretty, most were not. No-one got more dances out of me than another.
  8. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    Majority ask multiple times.
  9. Rugby

    Rugby Member

    I can see everyone's point of view. I am going to play the devil's advocate here though.

    When I first started dancing I did not ask the higher level people as I considered this rude to do so. I knew that I brought nothing to the table for them to warrant asking them to dance (but possibly the chance of hurting them by accident due to my lack of ability) compared to what they were bringing to the table for me. Lets face it, why would you ask someone much higher in abliliy to dance? Possibly for your own benefit, not theirs, so are you really the one being selfish? If they asked me then fine, they took their chances. If I asked them I forced them to feel bad if they turned me down or dance with me as a mercy dance to not hurt my feelings. Unless asked I kept with people of my own ability or lower. I worked on my dancing so that I would be worthy of higher level people dancing with me as I would bring something back to the table for them.

    Someone said you know what you are going to get at socials, mainly novice dancers. Does this mean you should not go if you are at at a higher level to social dances. I think higher level people know this but it does not mean that there are not other higher level people there too. The pickings might be slim but thats the chance you take and socials are for everyone, not just newbies. I like to go to dances as much to socialize as to dance.

    I am a Pre-Champ competition dancer now but I still ask newbies to dance. Just because I do it does not mean I expect others to do so also. If I do then I take my chances on what happens. One guy that I did not want to dance with asked me to dance and I did not want to turn him down and make him feel bad. He wanted to dance with me as he "wanted to take a high level dancer for a spin to see what he could do". Needless to say he wasn't thinking of me in the equation. We did a salsa and when I went behind him he abruptly threw me into a backwards dip that went across and over his back and in front of him, almost to the floor, tearing the muscles through my shoulder and back. A year of back pain and migraines later and he has forgotten the dance but I still can't turn my head to the right all the way. I will not dance with him again. So thats what he brought to the table for me and in return I had not wanted to make him feel bad by saying no. Also my partner is effected if I am out with a bad back or separated shoulder.

    Perhaps this is what D-spot means. The above man was selfish as he knew that he had nothing to offer but wanted to take from me for his own pleasure. He had no interest in getting better in his dancing but rather took pleasure from someone else's skill. Oddly enough down the road he decided to take lessons He was commenting to me that dancing with the novice people wasn't fun as all they did was lean on him and give him a sore arm and back. I almost said "Like mine" but didn't.

    In return if a higher level dancer wants to push the envelope then they also must not feel bad if they get turned down. This isn't for everyone as many people go to a dance just to enjoy the company of other people that love dancing. They should not be expected to have to do more if they cannot or are not interested in doing so. The higher level dancer cannot think that he is going to take a novice dancer out so he can see what he can do with them. Its just as rude as he / she is only thinking of themselves and not the other person. For the novice person this just becomes a survival dance.

    We must respect each other. Just as the higher level dancer must respect the novice and, if they ask them to dance, accomodate their level to the novice's or don't ask at all, the novice dancer must respect the higher level dancer and expect that they too have to up their game for the higher level dancer or don't ask them to dance at all. Or, we can meet each other half way.
  10. Mostly Ballroom

    Mostly Ballroom New Member

    Maybe not. :roll:
  11. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    I remmeber you telling me this (and in doing so warning the group about such people). Love dancing with you, great energy and a good height for me too.
  12. WaltzElf

    WaltzElf New Member

    Australia doesn't have the dancing quality of the U.S, perhaps, but I've danced Opens Amateur in competition before, and while I was lucky enough to be able to drop my level back a bit to give my new partner (who was a beginner when she started with me) a chance, I'm essentially on the cusp of being one of those top dancers you're talking about (in Standard and New Vogue).

    We sweat, sure, but in a conservative way - jogging rather than trying to sprint through a marathon, if you will. Just like you'll likely die before reaching the finish if you try and sprint a marathon, you're never going to be a good dancer if you go all out with your dancing.

    Actually I'll dance with literally anyone when I'm at liberty to. I chose my competition partners with a strong weighting to their appearence, but that's a different issue entirely.

    What I was trying to say is, if I'm going to end up doing boxsteps with people who aren't capable of doing anything else, or don't want to do anything else, I'll try and find something else to enjoy about dancing with them, rather than complain (internally or externally) that they're not being "energetic" enough.
  13. DL

    DL Well-Known Member

    I said something not unlike that. My point was simply that if one goes to social dances regularly, one should know what to expect to encounter at a social dance. Taking lessons, practicing, and improving one's own dancing will not change anything fundamental about those social dances and the people who attend them. If one goes, one should have the right expectations and be prepared to make one's own contribution to that community -- and yes of course find some ways to have fun for one's self, too. Finding some folks with similar skill and dancing with them certainly isn't a sin.

    Yikes. That really stinks. And yet, it is not even the worst story of its kind that I've heard (the worst was a news article about a lady who was dropped on her head and died). I continue to be horrified and amazed that anyone would think of doing this kind of thing with an unfamiliar partner, or with any partner with whom it has not been agreed upon in advance, or ever at all in a social setting.
  14. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    This was so laughable, glad I read it in the morning when I have had the chance to be rested so I could laugh long and hard about it.

    Nobody expects full out to mean that you expend all available energy in a single dance or less. Take it to an extreme, a powerlifter uses 100% of his effort in a couple of seconds or less, a marathon runner expends 100% of his effort over the 2hr plus. Surely the English language hasn't changed that much in Australia that you can misread comments so readily. (Or was it deliberate to be so apparently arrogant and contentious to add spice to the thread?)

    Are you saying, assuming the misunderstanding is real, that when you compete you do not try your hardest (that is 100% effort therefore by definition - personally I strongly dislike it when people ask for 110%, logical impossibility).
  15. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    Your earlier post indicated that you would be happy to dance all night doing boxsteps with a newbie IF she was pretty. Pretty facetious eh! (Trying to learn Canadian). Deliberately trying to inflame the thread. So, moving on. You still want to dance with a partner who is 'fascinating' in some way (or has that qualification gone out of the window as well). That is your payoff. Again I ask the question (is it really so hard to answer specifically, and not ambiguously, simple yes or not, it's the same meaning in Australian as it is in English or Canadian) would you continue dancing in a social environment, if that was your only dance input, if you could only dance with people who exhibited apathy all the time.
  16. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    Why do some of you even bother with social dancing at all, given the conditions and expectations and judgements that you put into it?

    You don't like the music, you're not there to socialize, you expect people to be giving as much as you (as if you could ever judge that), you're judgemental about people you perceive to not be as in the moment as you are (that takes one hell of a lot of nerve, let me tell you), you look down your noses at people no longer taking I need to go on?

    Just keep yourselves to practice sessions or comps or whatever, and do the rest of us a favor. Sheesh.
  17. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    I think I may be starting to get a handle on Waltz Elf. There seems to be some confusion on the phrase SOCIAL DANCE. Please note W. E. there are two words, count them, social is one word, and dance is the second word. You dance at a high level competitively. It seems that when you go to a social dance you are there for the first word, that's right social. You socialise. That seems to be your primary goal at a social dance, to socialise. You may go with your dance partner, your relationship partner, your friends, to make new social contacts, whatever, but you seem to go to socialise.
    Let's move onto the second word, we have now moved away from social and we move onto dance W.E. are you still with me, not moving too fast for you am I'm even trying to type slowly to help out here). Some people go to these social dance for the second word, to actually dance. That is there primary motication for going, to dance. One foot in front of the other to music. For those people if they do not want to dance, then they do not go to a social dance, they go to a social bar or other social event. Note the repeated use of the word social, that is to try to highlight the fact that the primary goal in these situations for some people is to be social. If at a social dance another person wants to socialise with me, I am happy to spend a few minutes with them socialising off the floor, becasue then I am not dancing. If they wanted to talk all night, then I would make excuses and move on. I would not want to spend all night with them at a social dance because then I am not dancing, that is why I am there, because of the dance, not the social.
    You have the option as to where you dance, I do not.
  18. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    And you are never judgemental about people in any circumstance? If so I would love to meet you because I think you are unique. It is a natural human tendency to judge people, to assess them. There is even the expression 'first impressions'. That's judging people (usually referring to judging people based on little information). Here you are judging people with a viewpoint different to your own, so I realise that your are not unique after all. Merely one of the crowd, having made a judgement without asking questions, attempting to find more information to be able to understand (if not agree with) the alternate viewpoint.
    I dance with more newbies than just about anybody else I know (and I am very active in the dance world (perhaps I should stop using the word social as it seems to be such a big issue for people to understand). Some other posters here have seen me on the floor (although I haven't had much time dancing with them, they have talented SO's and I don't wish to take time away from them). These people have also seen me dancing with many different people on a night, mainly newbies. These people, if they were to judge, are ina much better position becasue they have actual information gained first hand. They can speak to me and clarify points that they find difficult to deal with for whatever reason (disagreement, confusion, incompleteness, whatever).
    When I dance with a person, I have at least that first dance, 3 minutes on average to take on board as much information as I can. I an talk to them, ask questions, both verbally and in terms of body language. The body speaks volumes and should one choose to be aware of what is being said, you can reap mounds of information about there physical well being, about there attitude and preparedness to be responsive (amongst other things).
    A figure that is often quoted with reference to communication is:
    7% happens in spoken words.
    38% happens through voice tone.
    55% happens via general body language.
    (I accept there are issues with this, main thing is that a lot of info comes from body language compared to verbal - google mehrabian's communication study for more info).

    Sunmmary - I have the opportunity to gain information through multiple conduits and I have the awareness to do so actively. I accept that these relatively well informed first impressions could be wrong and I maintain an open mind as best I can. Based on the arge amount of information I have sought and found, I make an assessment as to whether or not it is worthwhile to dance with that person again (at least in the short term). And remember, this is not related to ability level (some perhaps, not me), outward appearance (some perhaps, not me).

    If you are judging me based on the limited information you receive through the thread, you are judging me based on significantly less information than I get when dancing with someone.
  19. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member


    We'll never meet on a dance floor (social or otherwise, for which I am grateful), so knock your socks off with your attitude. It seems to be working for you. Boo-yah.
  20. D-spot

    D-spot Member

    The issue about the perception of a persons attitude have been raised several times. A quick look on the web wrt to body language quickly found multiple sites. This one seems good as it breaks down the body language into useful clusters.
    This is the first one that I found, may be better ones of course.
    The ready body language and the bored body language are the ones I think are of specific relevance. Of course they are not dance related, but a little mental input demonstrates the use of it in the dance world.
    Trying to be helpful.

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