3 Sep 2014
Reflecting on how to correct my basic last night I realised that what all 3 pros have told me address a specific issue. The problem is how to put everything together.
So what Melissa Rutz said about making sure both legs are straight on the “1″ and to transfer the weight on the “1&” helps to slow down and make the rolling count more defined.
What Deborah said about having 1 leg bent and 1 leg straight at all times is correct – and that’s because when you fully transfer the weight onto the straight leg in a forward step, the back leg will naturally “bend” as it moves forward for the next step.
Then comes pitch. What Deborah said wouldn’t work if my boobs aren’t over my toes because I would be “reaching” rather stepping forward then. Hence what Sarah talked about in her analogy of climbing stairs make sense.
The problem now is how do I combine all 3 in dancing? Footwork drills are ok but once the music comes on, combined with the need to follow a lead who would not be perfect in his own footwork and lead, that’s when all the problems start.
31 Aug 2014
Need to clean up basics. Triple steps need to be more purposeful.
Engage core by lengthening ribcage.
Rotate more to cut distance and post earlier.
26 Aug 2014
So it occurred to me that since improving in a partner dance basically comprises of making a series of adjustments, I should keep a “running dance notes” to track the little lessons and take-aways I glean with every practice session and social I go for.
So… During practice last night, TM pointed out to me that I need to “lock” my lower back so that my legs don’t lag when the guy leads an accelerated move.
During social tonight, I was quite happy when someone I usually find it difficult to connect consistently with told me that he likes the stretch in my dancing.
Good ol’ Zee also told me that I should take my time for counts 1 & 2 but be quicker on my triples when moving past the lead as it will help me re-establish connection better.
I also need to pay attention to when the lead wants gives me a short anchor vs a long one instead of always moving to the ideal anchor I have in my head.
Made a bet with Champion last night. The wager is 1 Kronenbourg Blanc. Champion thinks I will make it to squad 3 months after squad restarts. I think it’ll be longer. Lol. We’ll see!
People who don’t do things wholeheartedly irritate me. To me, if I choose to do something, I’ll go all out to do it. If I’m not convicted to do something, I won’t proceed at all. And this applies to everything – not just at work but also on Sundays when I’m on duty for service. Then I thought to myself… maybe I’m being too task oriented and there are people who are passive / not proactive by nature hence they always appear to be neither in nor out.
Then there’s the issue of what to wear to church. Are shorts acceptable? My struggle is, since God is with and sees us all the time, if wearing shorts is acceptable outside church, then why not in church? That said, I still think it’s too casual. On one hand, one could say if one would dress to a certain level of formality for work, then one should do the same going to church. However, God looks at the heart so is this a man imposed norm formed out of vanity? I’m undecided.
My colleagues sometimes ask why do I always go for dance lessons. Last week my boss specifically asked why is there a need to dance every week if I’m not preparing for any competitions?
I couldn’t verbalise it on the spot but having considered the question, I think my answer would be that dancing is a learned reaction. Because different guys will lead differently, because songs have different breaks and feel, because different partnerships will result in different patterns and moves, the only way to widen one’s dance horizon / dance arsenal is to dance more.
In addition, we all have different bad habits to change and the only way to break a bad habit is to reinforce the correct or good habit. And reinforcement means lots and lots of repetition. As
I’ve always said, practice makes permanent. Hence, one needs to repeat classes to pick up the correct technique. And in order to internalise what was learnt, repetition is needed.
Coming back from the US, I was curious what has changed in my dancing and I found out today that the main difference was that my upper and lower body was well engaged. Sadly, it seems that I’m starting to revert to my pre-US level and I’ve been “leaving my legs behind”, especially when I’m tired.
I think I need to learn how to self-diagnose my various dancing problems on a daily basis. For starters, this is a note to self not to leave my legs behind when I’m tired.
On a brighter note, I’m starting to get the hand of doing skaters! Yippee! Very grateful to EW for teaching me and to Kono for practising with me for 15-20 min last night! Managed to do 6 turns within a dance tonight and it was great!
Gosh! June has gone by in a flash. Was probably one of the busiest month at work and the 2-week trip to the US meant I was extra busy before (to clear as much work as I could before I went on leave) and even busier after (as I sought to go through 1000 unread e-mails).
The US trip was great though. This being my first overseas West Coast Swing (WCS) trip, I was pretty thankful that I was travelling with a group of easygoing folks. Having my longtime friend and instructor, Zee, also helped!
Here’re the highlights of the trip!
Liberty Swing (New Jersey)
Elements @ Camelback Mountain (Phoenix)
Joyce, one of the ladies I was travelling with, did good research and found this restaurant called Elements. It scores on both the food as well as the views! (I think it’s one some travel list’s Top 35 Restaurants with a View or something). It’s DEFINITELY worth going!
Phoenix 4th of July Convention
Will I go on another dance trip again? Yes I would! But first, I really need to brush up on my dancing. Felt quite inadequate at the socials though at least I take comfort that my following was good!
My 35th birthday has come & gone in a flash. A couple of months back, I was kind of hung up over it – 35 years old – that’s like the age that tells what the rest of your life will be. Your career path’s probably fixed, are you the family type, etc. Even the government has set 35 as the age singles can buy a HDB flat!
I was on leave today. Pampered myself by getting an eyeliner embroidery (done by Lydia from Browhaus at Raffles City basement. Very good! Hardly any pain), shopping & getting a massage. Feeling quite accomplished as I bought 1 pair of Geox Working shoes, 2 dresses (and got a top free).
All that physical activity was followed by a scrumptious dinner at Ola Cocina at MBFC Tower 3. And dessert was an Awfully Chocolate chocolate cake (duh) that my mom bought, paired with prosecco wine.
Here’re some shots of the yummy dinner!
It as a wonderful day!
Things to remember:
1. When anchoring:
- Try to post at 4.
- Take 5 and 5& to be anchored.
- 6 should step down directly → don’t wait till 6 to anchor!
2. Underarm pass:
- Step 3 → body should be parallel to slot, right foot turned slightly out.
- Step 4 → should be slightly diagonal so you don’t trip over your own feet when dragging left foot in on 5.
3. Walking back:
- Place foot then roll down.
4. Focus on 1, 2, 4, 6. The triples in-between should just be about landing the feet under the body.
Received a letter from my previous company saying that i breached MAS regulations for a policy placed in 2010 and renewed in 2011 and thus they reported me to MAS. What the fark man, seriously! The misconduct, they claimed, was that i acted as a reinsurance broker when the company’s licence was only for direct insurance broker services.
I’m astounded how i could be considered a reinsurance broker when i don’t know / liaise / deal with the cedant nor the original insured. Fact of the matter is that my then Thai office approached the Singapore office for help as they were not familiar with Political Risk Insurance and thus i helped by providing consultancy / technical advice to them in discussion with underwriters. My previous company used to trumpet being “united” amongst all the offices. Well, that’s unity for you. When there’s money to be earned, they’ll earn it. Any issues, instead of clarifying with me what happened, i’m just made scapegoat. Totally disgusting behaviour.
Am now in the midst of discussing with my current company if i should raise this as an issue and clarify matters with MAS as this may affect me as a broker.
I’m just so pissed off and annoyed at how underhand the whole issue has been handled. Pui!
Poor Pinky’s not well. The old boy has cataracts developing in both eyes. Brought him to the vet who prescribed medicine to slow down the cataracts but it’s not really possible to remove them (surgery would be too risky for an old bunny like him).
Pinky has also developed snuffles (a rabbit cold). I hope it’s just URTI and will heal quickly. Otherwise, it’ll be another trip to the vet in the next few days and these trips are always traumatising for Pinky.
Please pray with me that Pinky will recover soon. The Lord has blessed and taken Pinky safely through many health scares before and I pray that He’ll sustain the old boy again.