Country and Western > Who hijacked the Two Step?

Discussion in 'Country and Western' started by G & B, Sep 17, 2006.

  1. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    One thing I've learned is that it's possible to approach other dances the way Argentine Tango is supposed to be danced. There are no patterns if you lead well, and the follower follows your lead (or even doesn't).
    BUT, if I am doing Two Step, I would REALLY like it if the woman does quick quick slow, slow no matter what else she does. No matter how many turns or pivots, or changes of direction we do, we always end up on the "same" foot: I step with my left, she steps with her right.
    This way she doesn't have to look at my feet when we end some weird combination that feels right at the moment.
    Of course the man has to keep doing the quick quick slow, slow, or be good enough to compensate somehow when the "pattern ends".
    Every time I get someone to go with this program, they start being able to follow really complicated stuff that is, again, done as an improvisation.
    This same guideline works for the other dances I do (except AT of course). Often my partners will get weirded out, but if they just stick with the basic pattern of steps, letting their feet take turns and doing quick quick slow, slow... it all works out.
    Anyhow, I think most of us are on the same page here.
     
  2. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    In my 5-minute intro to 2-step a few private lessons ago, that's exactly how my teacher started off. Just keep doing QQSS, to start with, and you should be fine. And, it pretty much worked--I was able to follow simple turns and steps and whatnot--not prettily--but I didn't have a problem following it.

    Incidentally, that's also how I learned Hustle. I was just told, whatever you do, or wherever I send you, just keep your feet going 1,2&3. It's worked for me so far.
     
  3. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    I was not trying to offend you. Just to defer to the competition experience you write about all the time.

    Styles change over time as the pros and judges determine what makes cleaner looking patterns. The size of circle of a hand lead is a current example kind of rippling through the dance circles. The current trend is towards much bigger leads than just holding up an arm and hoping the lady turns under it.
     
  4. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Sorry kayak, you honestly did not offend me, nor did I take it that way. I just hope I didn't rub you raw??

    Part of my job as moderator is to challenge others in an attempt to keep good conversations going. I thought that this was a very good thread, and it needed to be ironed out.

    Also, never, ever take what I say as gospel . . . cause it isn't . . . and as far as competitions go, I'm just and Intermediate/Advanced dancer, and the 2 Step is my worst dance!

    Besides . . . . . . . 99% of the time . . . I'm just not serious . . . I've learned never to take things serious . . . my heart and mind love me for it!

    Yea, I mentioned "the size of the circle of a hand lead" a couple of weeks ago, and was eaten alive for it, so I dropped it . . . for now. But it is one of those "new things" that has recently surfaced!
     
  5. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    Why don't you do the same number of Qs and Ss that you are leading her to do?
     
  6. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    Nope, I was just uncertain of your response :smile: The good news is I will be able to recognize you at dance events as the guy standing out on the floor rereading that post trying to figure out who is doing what?

    Why were people up in arms over the bigger arm movement? It seems like it helps the lady's with faster and more balanced turns. We all know that 2-step puts a lot of fast thinking pressure on the guys and fast turning pressure on the women.
     
  7. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    I think that you were in on some of the conversations . . . in the Salsa Forum re: stopping a follows' spin.

    I wasn't really eaten alive . . . just some comments back to me that didn't make sense. This what the Pros are teaching . . . just what we've been talking about!
     
  8. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    Oh yea, they didn't like my shoulder catch either. These seem pretty common to me. A simple open hand on the shoulder to change the direction of momentum. It seems like I know steps in 2-step, salsa, waltz, cha cha, nc2s, wcs, etc. that all use a shoulder catch at some point. I couldn't quite follow all of it. I go to salsa clubs and the guys are down below the girl's skirt and use knee catches to keep her in a continuous CBL.
     
  9. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Yea, that's the thread . . . and I agree with you. I use the shoulder catch quite a bit, esp in 2 Step, although my Pro literally breaks my arm if I use it in WCS.

    I couldn't follow it either . . . didn't know which response some of the answers were referrring to . . .

    Besides shoulders (and the knees that you mentioned), I also use belly catches, which surprises many followers - it's a nice backup move! Of course there are hip and waist catches in almost every dance. My wife uses my sides, my waist, my hips, and my knees . . .
     
  10. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    Kayak: The fact that the man continues to do the same thing was not stated explicitly. (I guess I thought that was obvious.) Not too long ago, I was dancing with a woman I considerer to be one of the best where I dance CW. We did some gawd awful amalgamation of moves, and when we were done, she looked down at my feet an exclaimed, "You're still on the beat!". "Well, yeah", I laughed.
    But, that's just most of the time.
    In Night Club Two Step one of my unusual moves is to not take the slow step to the side. I turn my torso, though, so it feels as if I've stepped. When we both take our next step, one of us (me) is stepping on the "wrong" foot. I usually move forward when I do this. As I mentioned before, this is perfectly acceptable in Argentine Tango, but it IS a learned skill (even in tango, women get confused when I do this). The women with more presence will not let this bother them and will continue with their steps. Others will realize that something is "wrong", and try to compensate. I usually end this after one slow, quick quick, having learned that it's usually best not to push my luck too far. (You end it my doing the same thing - skip a slow side step.)

    PS I LOVED the kneel on one knee and stop the woman's turn with the hand behind the leg move. I may have to start using that one again.
     
  11. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    Cool, sounds like we are on the same foot :) I have not used the fake step in nc2step, but do like it in cha cha.

    Back on the original question, I think the trend towards all the leads maintaining momentum makes for much cleaner lines. So I can see why the step close got displaced. I am always intrigued by how different women like to cover very different amounts of travel around the floor.
     
  12. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    What's the purpose of using a fake step? Is it just to easily transition into (and out of) what would be called, in AT, the cross system? I just don't know enough to see the purpose of it, unless it's to set up for certain leads.

    Also, what do you mean about women's prefernces in covering ground? Isn't that something set by the leader?
     
  13. jschaab

    jschaab New Member

    The goal in my experience is to get on the same foot as the follow (or to return to normal).
    Its necessary for instance if you lead your partner into shadow, and want to take a side step with her (otherwise you would go in opposite directions). alternatively you may want to actually take side steps in opposite directions while facing each other.
     
  14. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    Thanks for clarifying.
     
  15. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    The idea my friends have been working with me on is that women even about the same height will have different strides and energy. So for example, the natural length of their chaine and pivot turns will be different. If the guy can get a sense of where her best ballance is and adjust his body position and lead to match her strengths, he can lengthen or shorten their dance styling to make a much sharper presentation.
     
  16. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    Ohhhhh...
     
  17. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    "The size of circle of a hand lead is a current example kind of rippling through the dance circles. The current trend is towards much bigger leads than just holding up an arm and hoping the lady turns under it."
    Just for purposes of discussion...
    Is this one an incomplete off the hip sort of statment? Or, when people make up routines for competitions, do they really (not) lead turns so differently?
    For instance, I would never expect to just hold up an arm and expect a turn. There would be a certain amount of pressure in the direction I wanted the turn to go, and it would go with the woman's next step, and (hopefully) take into account where her balance is.
    I've seen people dance routines, even in big shows in Las Vegas, where it's obvious they are just doing choreagraphy rather than really dancing lead / follow. It really detracts from the dance for me.
    So, here is yet another question. Is this something judges look for, or not?

    PS Silly Question - Who hijacked the Who hijacked the two step thread?
     
  18. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Not sure if the judges could actually "see" the actual connection in the turns or not, but I do know that judges can tell if it is L&F versus "a routine."

    In fact, when I started working with my new Pro several months ago, I put her into multiple "Attitude" turns . . . there are other names for them!

    She let me go through them, but when we critiqued the video . . . she started on the path of correcting my lead for turns/spins . . . elbows, up/down the ramp, which fingers, my fingersinto her fingers, how to hold my hand, large circles, small circles, etc . . .

    I'm getting better and did them quite well (she says) in my last comp performance at the first of this month.

    I think "we" hijacked the 2 Step thread . . . maybe???
     
  19. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    ... but we are still on the topic of how the same dance changes over time.

    The size of the circle and how the leader brings his hand up is all lead/follow. I guess one school of thought is to use a fairly small circle as the lead and the guy's arm moves some but not tons. The other camp thinks the guy should make a much bigger circle. I think the idea is the larger lead creates more momentum and a crisper turn with better arm angles.
     
  20. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Yea, I also use the larger circles, pulsing, but added the reduction to smaller circles after my Pro taught me how to do it . . . haven't got my wife to read my intentions yet though:confused:
     

Share This Page