Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Move her with your heart!

One of my long-distance students asked me how not to lose connection with his partner while executing certain figures.  I gave him an exercise to try that I will share with you in a moment.

Men, do you ever feel while dancing that you’ve lost connection with your partner either when you walk in outside lanes, or during a figure requiring upper body torsion?

Women, do you ever feel like your partner has broken the integrity of the embrace, or that you’ve “lost him”?  . . . or that you have lost connection yourself either with pivots, or with your partner walking on the side?

I’m going to recommend to all of you the same experiment that I recommended that my virtual student try for several tandas or even for a whole evening.  
Here are the men’s version and the women’s versions of the experiment:

Try leading everything with your heart.  Have all your intention come from you heart.  Let you heart focus intently on you partner as you lead her in any linear or circular direction. Maintain the intense focus that you must move her with your heart.  Imagine also, if you can, that your embrace is coming from your heart, that becomes so big that it can wrap around her.  Your arms and the rest of your torso simply aid and accompany your heart. 

Try this exercise and see if it helps you to maintain connection, no matter what you are leading.  If there’s a movement that won’t work that way, for this exercise, don’t do it.  

Envision that you’re embracing your partner with your heart.  When he steps forward to embrace you, envision your heart expanding, expanding, expanding and reaching around him to receive his embrace and to embrace him.  In fact, try following with your heart. You don’t have to be dancing with someone who’s also doing the experiment.  Just secretly conduct this experiment yourself.  While focusing this intently on following with the heart, tangueras who anticipate are likely to forget all about worrying what steps they’re supposed to do, and their feet will respond easily to the heart’s intention!

Focus for several tandas on following your partner specifically with your heart.  You can easily maintain the embrace with your heart for a whole evening!  (I have done this myself!)  Try doing it with tangueros who are not your favorite partners, and see if it makes a difference in your experience. 

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Try this experiment and don’t tell any partner you’re doing it.  Just see if it improves anything in your tango connection.  See if anything interesting happens for you or for your partners.

Write and tell me about your experience at helaine@tangomojo.com, or respond in the comments section below.

Naples/Chicago tanguera Alla Peluchiwski sent me this relevant video:
"Argentine heart patients 'prescribed Tango dancing'

Tango video example
Here are 7 minutes of informal video footage from Milonga "Porteño y Bailarin" in Buenos Aires in 2004.  I'd like you to keep an eye on a couple, the young man with long hair in a light shirt and pants and the young woman with a black crop top and capri pants. They are the former star tango couple Javier Rodriguez and Geraldin Rojas, here dancing socially.  Javier and Geraldin were from the Villa Urquiza tradition (my "Rose Vine Tango), and I've shown you their performance videos many times in this ezine. 


Please notice how, no matter how complex his movements are, Javier never seems to lose connection with Geraldin, and she certainly doesn't lose connection with him! Can you envision him moving her with his heart?  Or she following with her heart?

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This article addresses another of the simple essentials on which we will focus in the August Tango Mojo Coaching Retreat, August 23-26, where I will guide a limited number of tangueros and tangueras to have the breakthroughs they have been seeking in their tango! A few spots are still available.  Contact me at helaine@tangomojo.com or 239-776-6535 to inquire!
Let me hear from you! I invite you to share your discoveries from the "Move her with your heart" exercise in the comments area below.

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