When you start dancing by yourself or practice dancing without a teacher, you'd better stop practicing. "You build funny habits!"
I hear this saying often, but what about the reality?
It is an important consideration. Everyone wants to start off right. Once you get used to the wrong move, it takes twice as much effort to unwind them. Dancing relies on your muscle memory, and muscle memory relies on a repetitive experience, so-called habit.
Today I will introduce the way of thinking about the 4 common habits of dancing, and how to fix them.
Let habits come in initially
First of all, there is no need to have extreme fear against bad habit in the beginning.
To be able to dance well, it needs quite a bit of practice time. But if you do not practice worrying about the potential habit, you will never reach that level.
While it may be worth the consideration if you are aiming for a professional dancer or instructor. Otherwise, you do not have to think deeply as long as the purpose is to enjoy dancing with friends as a hobby.
Big 4 that every dancer possesses
If it is a habit that can be easily controlled and suppressed for the purpose of choreography as a whole, there is nothing to worry about. That is easy to overcome.
However, some habits are hard to fix even when you know it. It is the stuff you cannot dance without coming across, consciously or unconsciously. Those are the ones you should work on to fix.
Here are the 4 kinds of bad habits:
- Falling line sight and bending forward
- Iron hard chest facing front
- Early rhythm and beat
- Disconnected choreography and music
Falling line sight and bending forward
It is common among the people who started dancing without using mirrors. To remember the steps, you start seeing your feet while dancing. That gets into the habit easily. When they actually perform dancing, they get lost of where to lock their eyes on.
Even if they are using a mirror, those who remember dancing by watching their feet have this tendency.
What happens is when your line of sight falls that snowballs into the lowered head and forward center of gravity. It tilts your overall body forward as a result.
Line of sight falls => Head falls => Center of gravity falls => Entire body falls forward
Your head is heavy as is, and sits on the top of your body. The balance of your gravity center moves very easily just by moving the position slightly.
The fix is more from the conscious experience rather than practice method. Let's start by seeing your whole body in the mirror.
Iron hard chest facing front
Although it is difficult to explain in the written form, it is the phenomenon when the breast always faces the front against the mirror, and it never changes the direction while dancing.
Because the movement of your arms and legs are directly linked with the one of the trunk ranging from the shoulder to the waist. When the chest is solidified, your movements with the limbs look like they are flapping childishly.
Good dancers show the dynamism by moving their whole bodies. You need to release the power from the trunk without relying on limbs. It is necessary to remember how to use the body as your foundation (see below).
Early rhythm and beat
This is a nightmare habit that can haunt even the experienced dancer at some occasions.
When dancing, you gradually build up moment with emotion. Your mind starts to go about choreography first rather than rhythm. Your mind choreography triumphs music. Your rhythm is getting earlier without realizing.
The effective method of improvement is to practice with songs with extremely slow tempo. At the same time, you need to make consciousness effort to take the rhythm first priority before choreography.
I recommend this especially because the wide gap between the beats forces you to listen to the song carefully and be patient.
Disconnected choreography and music
Up and down - in the warm up, you can feel the rhythm. But, the rhythmical feeling cannot be applied together in steps or choreography.
If you practice from every day by dividing the rhythm training and steps, it becomes difficult to mix the two. Your move will not be accompanied by the music.
If you can do the up and down rhythmical move by itself, then you need to practice the move in a different way. It is often necessary to relearn the steps and choreography all over again with the rhythm in mind.
Music has to be soaked into the body from the bottom up.
Fix your habits, by using your body well
The quickest way to fix the habit of dancing introduced this time is to be able to control your body well. Practice how to use your body.
It is somewhat abstract and you barely hear this at the dance school. It is not unheard of for people to never come across this concept.
It is not only dancing. The key to improving all sports is in how to use the body.
Actually it is included as the foundation of dancing just like rhythm and isolation.
Once you know the
Conscious effort to fix them is the most important!
Today, I covered the 4 common bad habits all dancers come across at least once in their life time. They all turn into obstacles that make your dance look amateurish, unconfident, and uninteresting.
If you notice that you have any of them now, that is good. You have a chance to improve significantly.
Whether you are going to dance school or learning by yourself, you never get better at dancing without practicing on your own.
The important thing is to have a mindset to grasp where you are not good at and work hard to fix it.