Follow the leader

Or is that leader the follow. It get’s confusing sometimes. In the future, I should capitalize on opportunities to lead in class. I need the experience.

Tonight I attended a Level 3 Foxtrot class. It wasn’t quite as advanced as I was hoping it would be. We worked on progressive movement in Feather and Three Step. Most of the people in the room dance primarily American Style, so this is very legitimately a Silver Step. I’ve also done a lot of International Style, where these steps are the very beginning of Bronze. I’ve always found that funny, how American Style Foxtrot sort of dithers around in Bronze, before becoming a lot more like International Style in Silver.

I really enjoyed the technique we went over today. After going over the basic footwork, Gary spent some time talking about contra-body movement. He used a simile for the movement of the frame that I found very helpful. He described it as swinging from monkey bar to monkey bar–grab, swing, grab, swing. I good way to think about it.

I lead for the entire class as the women/men ration was nearly 2:1. I think I learned a lot. It forces me to KNOW the step in a way that I tend to skirt as a follow. One of my biggest weaknesses as a dancer is that I don’t like to memorize steps. If I don’t have to memorize it I won’t. My rationalization is always that I don’t want to anticipate steps, I just want to follow. Eventually my body and brain learn the steps anyway, but not on the same level as the lead knows them.

There are two more Level 3 Foxtrot classes this month and, if women/men ratios continue this way I think I will improve my knowledge of some of these basic steps immeasurably. I wish I had a partner to dance with. This class is intended primarily for competitive couples, and anyone else at an appropriate level who wants to come.  So the competitive couples tend to come and dance only with each other. And there are just about NO unattached men. Sigh. Not that I want to get out of leading…but I want to get out of leading. That is, I want to work on following too.

I realize now how spoiled I was having Chris as a partner a few years ago. He was better than me, but he was ok with that. And he was motivated. Practice, practice, practice. I wish I could find someone at my level who wants to do that I know. Even someone a little below my level would be ok, I think, so long as they were committed.

What do I do? Put out a personals ad? Actually, I’ve already done that. A few weeks ago I put up a profile on I should go and check it to see if I’ve gotten any messages. *Checking*  Nope.

So anyway, I guess for now I will just take it as it comes. This is a very good opportunity to learn these basic steps and learn them well.  Follow the leader. Leader the follow. I’ll figure it out.

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