When we hear “tango practice” what is the image that comes to mind?
Most popular answer: “Hours in a studio practicing with and without a partner on things we suck at..!”
Does it have to be this way though? NO!
Tango Practice can be enjoyable and motivating!
Tango practice doesn’t need to be that painful.
It can be hard work, but if it is structured correctly and timed properly it can actually be short, sweet and fun!
As you will hear me say in the beginning of this video, a Tango practice can’t start before we identify what the problem really is… Going in a studio to practice just because someone said you have to, will only get you frustrated.
So before you start your practice, take a moment to:
- think of any struggles you might be facing regarding, posture, walks and ochos (or Tango in general if you are not following the video above)
- find what you are REALLY good at regarding posture, walks and ochos
- draw the connecting line between what makes you good and what makes suck…
- build your practice based on #3… like a story that builds on a narrative.
So even though most people will tell you to just practice to correct your shortcomings, I want to encourage you to do almost the opposite!
Double down on what makes you good.
Figure out what is that ONE thing that makes you good. And then see if you can use that to correct what you suck at it….
*Note: I said “if”…
We all suck at something and we are all really good at something else. Nobody is perfect at everything. There maybe somethings you can’t fix… Accept them and bet on your strengths instead!
Tango practice can be short, sweet AND fun!
There is also another myth, around the length of practice…
For some reason most people think that the more the better. But really what is the point of practicing for hours if you are going to be on your phone or on autopilot..?
And most importantly… what is the point of practicing when your technique is failing you?
As Terry Laughlin, swimming coach and founder of Total Immersion had said: “Stop when you realize your technique is failing you”
And Luis von Ahn, the founder of Duolingo suggests around 20mins of practice a day to avoid burn- out..!
So why do we think dancing is any different than swimming or learning a language..?
Going past a certain time- limit, just for the sake of being in a studio will offer zero results and bring only disappointment and frustration.
What should we do instead?
Remember step #2 mentioned above?
*find what you are REALLY good at regarding posture, walks and ochos*
After you go through the Tango scan in your mind on what makes you good at posture, walks and ochos, change ochos to pivots and then revisit ANY activity you are really good at.
All activities have some version of posture, walking, and pivoting.
Bring drills from those activities into your Tango practice.
Everything is connected… believe me! The only thing you need to do is identify the connecting path.
By doing that you are not starting from 0.
You are starting from something you are already good at, you are already confident with and you are taking the details you find are common to Tango, into your Tango practice.
Not to mention how much more motivating this strategy is…
You are not practicing in the dark, you can actually have a plan. Then you are not starting from 0, even if you are a beginner in Tango. And lastly, you start from a place of confidence, from a place of power and that allows you to explore more and at a deeper level.
Is this something super easy to do..? No, but it is totally worth it!
And if you need help, subscribe to bautanz and you can get videos just like this one weekly in your inbox… Along with other inspirational goodies every Sunday..!
P.S: Did you know we have an online course based on these very principles?
Check it out here: Intelligent Tango