Active Member
In any partner dance first thing I look for is that she is able to stay on her legs on her own and in balance. Then we can start talking about connecting with each other, number of those connecting points, me shaping her and giving her support where needed etc
Perhaps I didn't express myself terribly clearly, this is not to say I lose connection or do the move completely on my own, with my last partner we were always careful to try to maintain a push/pull connection even with the higher hand hold-- whenever we worked the develope we did try to make sure he was leading it. By "on my own" I only really mean to say that I have my own weight solidly and do not need to use him for support regardless of how high my develope reaches. That being said, perhaps it is more easily leadable from a lower handhold? Also part of the problem, I think, is that my new partner places me what feels like a long way away from him, so my leg is bumping into his arm a lot closer to the foot than it feels like it should, which would also inhibit my ability to gain height.

Larinda McRaven

Site Moderator
Staff member
His hands (connection) are a reflection of the angle of his hips. His hips are not "higher"... so his hands would be terribly disconnected from the shape of his body if they were "higher".

Listening to peoples questions often gives me valuable insight to their level of understanding of the intricacies of partnering. The fact that you reiterate the symptoms, when someone points you in the direction of the root problem, is rather telling. If you are questioning where hands go... I am going to assume you need to take more lessons on connection... not hand height. If you are saying you don't have room to raise your leg, then either your shape is wrong, or his is. Your issues (hands and lack of room to kick) are SYMPTOMS, not problems.

None of this has anything to do with hands. You can keep focusing on hands. But you aren't going to fix the root of the problem (and increase your level of understanding of partnering overall) if that is where your attention keeps pointing.


Active Member
Unfortunately, experiences from my area are that teaching in ballroom frequently works that way - teachers trying to correct the symptoms, to make the couple "looking right" (in particular point of the choreography), instead of trying to detect the root of the problem.


Well-Known Member
UMASSshoesandcostumes, I haven't seen you dance Smooth with this new guy yet, but I wanted to strangle your former partner for his technique offenses. I hope you two are able to communicate well and be open to creating a good partnership, even if it means one or both of you revise what you believed to be "correct". You have the physical ability to progress through the upper syllabus levels. Now you just need to find the right path and mentors/instructors to guide you.

So. Let's discuss the initiation of the develope' action for both partners, shall we? :D
Hi, this is an old thread, but I haven't been able to find an answer anywhere else online for my developpe question. I see from videos and photos that latin dancers do ballet-style developpes with the raised leg turned out, while most standard dancers do it with the foot turned in, with the sole of the shoe facing outward. Are there strict rules about this, or is it just a matter of preference? Would it be considered "wrong" to turn out the foot in a waltz developpe?

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