Embellishments…hmmm… for some an absolute no-no and for others a must- have!
The good thing about this article is that whether you will use the embellishments in your dance is completely irrelevant…
How embellishments can shape your practice
Especially one of the embellishments that I chose can NOT be done in a milonga. It is the kind of embellishment, you can only do if you show up really early or leave really late.
We will by-pass therefore the debate on the appropriateness of embellishments and we will focus on what we can learn from them, if we let them shape our practice
Aside from the obvious first step; of figuring out how to actually do the embellishment, here are the next levels we can take our practice to:
- Exploring the balance between tension and relaxation. To do an embellishment, you need to free the “free” leg of any unnecessary tension that will slow it down.
- Becoming aware of our body position. How does our posture need to change, so we can spare that leg, and still feel good, confident and strong
- And timing. When is the right time to start the embellishment, and when should it end. How can we transition smoothly into the next step
These are the key elements we will be focusing on in this article. If you can of any more leave a comment below, to start up a chat..!
Relaxation Vs Tension
In this first video, we are focusing more on the first two pointers, from the list above.
We start by relaxing the legs and the arms. And our goal is to keep them relaxed as we gradually create tension in the core.
When we make our way to standing, we shift our focus to body alignment. How do shift the body to allow for one leg to move freely in space?
Becoming aware, of the balance points available to us and the lines of alignment being formed in our bodies, we can create freedom and power without jeopardizing balance and strength.
Embellishments in their purest form
In this video, the second one of the series, we are getting more and more analytical, with our movement. We are breaking the embellishments down to movement blocks and we take each one and create an exercise around it.
This helps us dive a bit deeper into all the elements on our list, even timing… As we begin to notice where and when the movement starts in our body and where and when it ends.
And last but not least, a video that focuses on body position and timing.
When our body is positioned properly, we are ready to act, that is quite obvious. What is not obvious is the opposite… being aware of time and opportunity to act. Timing therefore and body position are intimately tied together. We need to be ready WHEN the opportune moment comes our way.
Practice smart, might mean, work on embellishments
Maybe you think embellishments are a waste of time. That they won’t let you focus on what truly matters. And that they are superficial unnecessary elements, that most dancers tend to use when their technique is in fact poor.
I don’t blame you, I believed all that myself and still do to some extent. I would like though to invite you to see embellishments, for what they are. Off the dance floor and outside the dance studios, they are nothing more than movements. And we can be taught from any movement as simple or as complicated it may be.
And if you want to keep practicing smart with movements then visit this page: https://bautanz.com/argentine-tango-technique/tango-technique-workout/
But if you don’t want to wait for the next video and you want set your practice now then this link is more appropriate: https://bautanz.com/intelligent-tango-programs-and-courses/
Till next time, tango on! 😉