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Saturday, 14 July 2018

Just a friendly word of advice

At a practica (or even at a milonga, heaven forbid), has a dance partner given you advice about how to improve your tango?  Perhaps it was a suggestion about your embrace, your balance, your movements, etc.  Did the advice make sense to you?  Were you successful in putting the advice into practice?  If so, did you feel that it resulted in an improvement?

Most of us do want to improve.  And, I think I would be correct in saying that most of us would love dancers in our tango community to continue to improve, so we can enjoy more of those treasured tango moments.  For that reason, we might from time to time, be tempted to provide unsolicited advice when something isn't quite working while dancing.  But quite apart from the inappropriateness of 'teaching' in a milonga where we should dance as equals, will this advice actually be helpful to our partner?

Do we have sufficient expertise to analyse and advise on movement?  Do we have expertise in the opposite role?  Are we certain that we are not responsible, at least in part, for the 'problem'?  In a practica or in class, wouldn't it instead be more helpful to provide feedback to our partner about what we are feeling, experiment together, then if advice is needed, ask an expert?

Take a look at Why most advice you get about your dancing is wrong, by Veronica Toumanova.


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