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May. 14th, 2006

I realized that I hadn't written much about dancing lately. Currently, I'm working on Tango and Waltz with my teacher. Tango is probably my weakest dance, so I have just been doing a lot of technique; not much in the way of new patterns.

I also seem to have some muscle strain in my right arm. Every so often, I'd notice that my right arm hurt while dancing. I attributed it at first to getting used to my teacher's emphasis on arm position (elbow higher than shoulder). But the past few weeks, I've started to realize that it's painful for me to keep my arm bent that way. With past teachers, I used to get comments about how my right arm was dropping a bit, but it was never really an issue until now. I also think the arm muscles were aggravated somewhat during my vacation from carrying a heavy travel bag and knapsack. When I see my teacher tomorrow I'll discuss the situation with her and see if there is a way to compromise on arm position. I don't think the issue is serious, but I don't want it to become so. Several friends of mine developed arm problems from dancing and at least one needed surgery.

I'm also having "issues" about the time/cost of dancing. Sometime in the next month or two I'll use up my current lesson allotment. I would like to take more lessons but am not sure I can justify the cost or time. Although chorus will be off for the summer, and I won't have any piano lessons for a month while my teacher is on vacation, dancing still takes up quite a bit of time. Even if I find a job, I'm not sure I'll be able to devote as much time to dancing as is necessary to continue to make good progress.



May. 16th, 2006 10:24 pm (UTC)
I met with my teacher last night, and she helped me with various types of repositioning (shoulders, back, arms, to name a few). The way she describes it, my dancing will really improve (and I'll be in less pain) when I improve my overall posture.

I've thought about taking group classes instead of private lessons. Generally, I find that when I take group classes, I need the private lessons anyway to work on the finer details of what's covered in the classes. Even if I can remember everything that was taught in a class, the private lessons augment the class because there's more time to spend on the lead, the frame, etc. In addition, I learn more of what I'm really supposed to do because the private teacher is an experienced professional, whereas when I'm dancing with other students in the class, when things are difficult I'm not sure if it's something I'm doing wrong or if it's my partners. Experience, technique, etc. tend to vary quite a lot in the group classes I've been in.
May. 16th, 2006 10:51 pm (UTC)
It's my feeling that to improve the most, you should do a mixture of private classes, group classes, weekend workshops, and of course, social dancing.

If you can afford private lessons, you'll definitely learn more in them than in group classes.

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