Learning Curves: My Fun Blog

On life. One learning curve at a time on the path to becoming a renaissance man.

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Pilates in life and dance, part #4 (I think)
gevron
Pilates in life and dance, part #4 (I think). This time - leading.

When dipping a lady, I try and progress as far as I feel my strength would allow, as needed, combined with my and her balance.

I especially like a specific dip, where it is followed by a head loll of sorts, the follower dips and releases her neck to lay her head back when she is done (her call). This can be dangerous if not led right due to potential whiplash with the head. Much care is advised. This happened to me once and I am happy it was with Elissa Gutterman or I might have lost a limb in retribution.

If done right, the dip could be quick or slow, and broken down into quick and slow elements, even combined with a safe whip of the head.

Now to the Eureka! moment - with increasing awareness of my own head in my over-all body position, I noticed that it assumes a better position when I straighten my spine into a good position, regardless of what position I put it in. Beginning all the way all the way down from the sacrum. Further, Pilates provides me with an increasing awareness of my own spine as it unwinds, one vertebra at a time.

This weekend in Ukraine, I danced with a great follower - I think it was Olga Braslavska) and was about to dip her, when I felt her spine unwind, and knew exactly when she reaches her limit at the top of the spine and can relax her head.

While I experienced many changes in my dance since I started Pilates - in my own body, my use of the floor, my styling, and generally in my awareness - I never expected this awareness of the follower.

I am an extremely sensitive guy, I can sense anything the follower does, from the bounce in her spine in a hip catch (thanks Robert Royston!), through her muscle tone in her core (thanks Maxime Zzaoui and Rebecca Ludwick!), to her weight shifts (thanks Ronen Khayat, David Ornstein, and Dorit Shalom!). Sometimes (not close to always) I can even match it in some fashion - but I'm not that good of a dancer yet.

But this? Talk about motivation to do more Pilates! With all the buzz about how Pilates is good for dancers, I never even heard of this kind of awareness.

2 months of Pilates and counting!

AWESOME!!! <3

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