Last Dance of the Year

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So Friday was the last schedule group class and party for the year.  The studio is now appointment only until January 2nd and closed for a couple of days for the holidays.  I debated whether to try to book something the two days after Christmas but decided to stick with my original plan and take some time off.  My knee is bothering me a bit (I’ve mentioned the arthritis before I believe).  I will be going in for another cortisone shot in early January but I think some time off will help so I’m going to do that.

They did one large group class so we had students from all levels doing the cha-cha.  I was lined up with one of the more experienced dancers.  She’s married but her husband has been having some hip problems so he was sitting out the group class and was just there for the party.  Besides, he hates cha-cha so I’m kind of her designated cha-cha partner.  Next to us were a relatively new couple so right after the group started, my instructor switched us around so we split up the new couple.  Then, she basically tells me to push this student through the steps and tells my other partner to back lead the new guy.  Guess she figured they were going to struggle so she wanted us to take a more active part in helping them through the routine.

Part of it was a basic underarm turn but, like most beginners, she knew what she needed to do so she started her turn before I raised my hand and I did politely point out that she really needed to wait.  Fortunately, my instructor saw that and then made the same point.  I know teaching a class with students at all levels is difficult because they don’t want to get so bogged down in the basics that you make it boring for the more advanced students but you can’t go so fast that you leave people behind.  I know the groups are focused on the steps but I do wish they would spend a little more time on lead/follow although that is difficult because most of the beginning men don’t really know how to lead so the women really can’t follow.  Anyway, at the end, she was getting it and she told me I was a good lead so it was a positive.

They have another coach coming to the studio in January.  It is someone I have some history with and I don’t have a real positive opinion of her and have avoided taking coaching lessons with her before but I figured everyone deserves another chance so I signed up.  We are going to have her chereograph a fox trot routine so I suspect it will be a lot like my swing coaching where it is more just developing the choreography and less actual dancing which is OK with me.

Also, I talked a bit with my instructor about seeing if we can work a third showcase into the mix.  They have two for the local area but there is another studio just about 2 hours north of here that runs a showcase for a different group of studios.  We’ve gone to their showcase a couple of times but didn’t go this year because the timing wasn’t right.  But, I know they are working on coordinating schedules so, if all goes well, I’ll be doing three showcases in 2014.  Get excited.

Clearly, for me, the challenge is to stop doubting myself.  If I can keep my negativity in check, then I know I will progress much faster and farther.  Just have to learn to turn that part of my mind off and accept that I do have a skill set for this and that the only thing holding me back is my own self-doubt.  Think I made some progress in the last half of the year and maybe that can continue into the new year.  Stay tuned.

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