Level 2 July - August 2017

Week 7: starting August 28
We reviewed all moves of Level 1 and 2, with particular emphasis on the Giro to the Right from Parallel Cross.
Other moves reviewed were:
  • Medialuna
  • Parallel Cross with Forward and Backward Ochos
  • Sandwich
Week 6: starting August 21
We worked on and refined the Giro to the right from Parallel Cross. 
Key points:
  • The difference (re: frame / torso) in leading backward and forward circular steps
  • The importance of the leader being aware of where the follower is at every point of the Giro
  • The follower needs to follow the giro code of walking while staying focused on the direction of the leader's torso.
Week 5: starting August 14

We continued to refine the Medialuna,  improvising it's entry from Backward Ochos. 
We introduced the Giro to the right from Parallel Cross - to be focused on in next lessons.


Q:What's the difference between a Medialuna and a Giro? 
A: Medialuna: 3 steps circular in one direction. Giro: more than 3 steps circular in one direction - usually 5. The Giro from Parallel Cross is  5 steps: Forward - Side - Back - Side - Forward.

Leader's steps need to be smaller than followers as he is the centre of the circle.

In Bondi Sophia demonstrated a drill for dissociation:


Home Play:

Leaders and followers: Practice the dissociation drill.

Leaders: View the videos and memorise your moves and that of the followers. Practice the move with a partner or solo (visualising your partner's moves as well as yours)

Followers: Practice doing Giros to both sides solo around a chair. Imagine the chair is the leader and keep your chest facing the chair as you turn (disassociation). 

Step to your right (clockwise) :  Forward - Side - Back - Side - Forward then reverse direction with a forward step to your left (anti-clockwise) followed by Side - Back - Side - Forward then reverse direction with a forward step to your right... and continue this pattern.

View the video not to memorise the moves but to note how the leader's and follower's torsos stay connected in the turn. Notice how the steps are circular (particularly the back step).

For reading:
How to practice without a partner - for leaders
How to practice without a partner - for followers

Week 4: starting August 7
We continued to refine the Medialuna, and then improvise it's entry from Backward Ochos: whenever the follower is pivoting on the leader's left side he can lead the entry to the Medialuna. 

To make this work the leader needs to know the follower's moves - which are:
Step 1: Right leg - Back circular step (cross step) to leader's right
Step 2: Left leg - Side step (aka Open step) to leader's right
Step 3: Right leg - Forward circular step (cross step) to leader's right
Step 4: Left leg - Forward circular step (cross step) to leader's left.

Followers: Instead of memorising the steps for this move (as that doesn't help you to become a better follower) focus on following the leader's torso / frame lead and adhering to the circular ('Giro') code of walking - which is every second step is a Side (Open) step and every alternate step is a forward or back step. If you enter the side step with a forward step you'll exit the side step with a back step and vice versa.

Forward and back steps in satellite moves like Giros and Medialunas are always cross steps (not to be confused with the figure of the Parallel Cross). A cross step is defined as a step whereby you can't open your legs without turning your back to your partner.

Week 3: starting July 31
We reviewed moves from Week 2 and introduced the concept of circular walking. New move introduced was the Medialuna from Back Ocho (with optional Parada):


Week 2: starting July 24
We added the Forward Ocho to the Parallel Cross - they fit together well ('poetry of moves')

Week 1: starting July 17
We continued refining the Sandwich with third Parada (from Level 1 term).
We introduced the Parallel Cross:


Leader's steps for the Parallel Cross:

Step 1 Left Leg
  • Direction: Side step to the left. 
  • Dynamic: normal.
  • Torso: angled to your right for 'blocking step' - called 'disassociation because upper and lower body are angled differently.
  • Intention:  that your follower slightly under-steps you.
Step 2 Right Leg
  • Direction: Forward step (outside of the follower but not far from her).
  • Dynamic: less dynamic - half the size of a normal step.
  • Torso: maintain same angle as at end of Step 1 - disassociation continued.
  • Intention: don't cross follower's centre line.
Step 3 Left Leg
  • Direction: Forward step (outside of follower but not far from her). 
  • Dynamic: more dynamic - strong push off.
  • Torso: maintain same angle as at end of Step 1 - disassociation continued.
  • Intention: that follower steps dynamically and has room in front of her to cross.
Step 4 Right Leg
  • Direction: Collect to meet left leg or slightly to the right (if necessary to be in front of follower if she has stepped too much to your right - this is why I call this step the 'adjustment step').
  • Torso:  As you collect your right leg to the left your torso straightens up - ending with no disassociation
  • Intention: Follower crosses in the space between you and her as you change weight to the right leg. Your hips, torso and feet face each other. At the  end of this step your weight is on your right leg and her weight is on the same side of the body as yours.
I have deliberately not included the follower's steps as followers need to avoid memorisation to become good followers! To become a good leader a leader needs to know both his steps and that of the follower.

Here's a video of the improvised display Ian and I did at the end of class:

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