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Mike Wazowski

Mike Wazowski: Year 1 in Hogwarts Castle

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18 hours ago, Raxie said:

Hey there ballroom ravenpuff challenge twin! Glad to see you're trucking along here :D

Hey there twin!!! Fun fact: every time I read Ravenpuff I now picture a bizarre jigglypuff-like pokemon!

 

18 hours ago, Raxie said:

Sorry you had a fight with your partner, I'm only just having my eyes opened to the drama side of things that can be ballroom dancing.  And I thought ballerinas were dramatic... nopeeee hahah. The partnering really does add such an interesting interpersonal layer to things. I feel like it's like some sort of social experiment XD  Glad things were resolved and put you guys in a good place though! Also congrats on the comp going well :) What dances did you compete in? And also hooray for good dates!

Haha this was the good type of fight though - disagreements on practice logistics and her speaking up on a need to have at least one total rest day a week - reasonable and nothing like some of the crap I see at the studio (this one pro couple...MAN they are mean to each other). Comp was just latin Cha cha, Samba, and Rumba - she's a bit newer to Latin as a genre so we're layering dances in slowly, it might be a while before we have all 5, and that's ok! For now, we're going to start diving deep on movement quality now that things are mostly happening in the right order when we run our choreo.

 

18 hours ago, Raxie said:

Ah shoot that's right I really wanted to start recording my dance practices/what I learned and worked on/etc too since you said something about that last challenge and I totally forgot. Such a good idea. Congrats on the chin up PR!

I highly recommend it - even if I'm inconsistent on actually doing it myself.

 

18 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

Oh man I'm just imagining how difficult it must be if you're dating your ballroom partner, or if you're family! 

Been there, done that; got the ex-fiancee. Wait, that's not a common saying?

 

18 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

That's an excellent habit.

Thanks!! 2/3 this week - we'll see if I keep it going tomorrow. It helps that I don't have a ton of meetings and am a generally efficient worker when people don't come over and dump new things on my plate.

 

17 hours ago, Raxie said:

The owners of my studio are pro ballroom partners and married, though I think they were partners first and then started dating not the other way around.  The guy actually grew up partnering with his sister for years and years.  I can't imagine the fights that must have ensued in the sibling pairing haha

Haha we don't have any sibling pairings, but we do have an adorably precocious little couple - the little girl throws SO MUCH shade at her partner (we told her to stop asking passive aggressive questions like "Umm is the guy's hand supposed to be near my waist?" and instead give her boy the feedback directly in the form of "could you move your hand higher up on my back?"*). But then they also do adorably grand gestures like bringing each other chocolates and/or flowers at competitions. It's nauseatingly cute.

 

*Also a good habit if you're ever partnering another am - ask for more or less of something, it's way better than arguing about what's right. Also, I love what my coaches say about connection: "don't talk about connection - fix your own dancing and the connection will fix itself."

 

Quick update from the past couple days:

  • Sleep is happening at around 8 hours
  • Calories appear to be on target, maybe a hair below the 2,700 goal (I'm not tracking my dinners super closely and OK with it); I'm either more dehydrated the past couple days or some cutting is happening - TBD!
  • Positive mindset is still mostly there - I'm currently reading a book on Jesuit spirituality (Catholic version of hippie spiritual practices, basically) and it's been really eye-opening to try to "find God in all things" (even the co-worker who's talking loudly all the time and doesn't cover his mouth when he coughs). No giant revelations, but daily re-centering of some sort is happening, and that's still something.

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4 hours ago, MikeW said:

Hey there twin!!! Fun fact: every time I read Ravenpuff I now picture a bizarre jigglypuff-like pokemon!

 

Hahaha I've been trying to think of what a Ravenpuff would look like too! Oddly enough I just did my Ilvermorny sorting and I think it kinda looks like a Pukwudgie, which is my Ilvermorny house - feathery black hair and chubby like a jiggly puff!

 

ilvermorny_pukwudgie_house_by_nerdyandik

 

4 hours ago, MikeW said:

 

Haha this was the good type of fight though - disagreements on practice logistics and her speaking up on a need to have at least one total rest day a week - reasonable and nothing like some of the crap I see at the studio (this one pro couple...MAN they are mean to each other). Comp was just latin Cha cha, Samba, and Rumba - she's a bit newer to Latin as a genre so we're layering dances in slowly, it might be a while before we have all 5, and that's ok! For now, we're going to start diving deep on movement quality now that things are mostly happening in the right order when we run our choreo.

 

I think that's a good argument to have - you both definitely need to set goals and boundaries in the relationship. 

 

That's exciting! Jive and paso are so different from the other ones those make sense as being the ones you did.  Rumba is my arch nemesis though. Also I just found out the other day paso used to be a standard dance did you know that? That's so weird to me from the styling perspective but I guess it actually makes sense.

 

4 hours ago, MikeW said:

Haha we don't have any sibling pairings, but we do have an adorably precocious little couple - the little girl throws SO MUCH shade at her partner (we told her to stop asking passive aggressive questions like "Umm is the guy's hand supposed to be near my waist?" and instead give her boy the feedback directly in the form of "could you move your hand higher up on my back?"*). But then they also do adorably grand gestures like bringing each other chocolates and/or flowers at competitions. It's nauseatingly cute.

 

As a highly sarcastic person who loves to throw shade at my husband anyway, I can understand how tough it must be to not do that if you're dancing together.  It's definitely not constructive but it just feels so good. Hahaha. But also that's really cute.

 

4 hours ago, MikeW said:

*Also a good habit if you're ever partnering another am - ask for more or less of something, it's way better than arguing about what's right. Also, I love what my coaches say about connection: "don't talk about connection - fix your own dancing and the connection will fix itself."

 

That's a great suggestion! I've definitely been struggling with connection (probablyyyyy why rumba is my arch nemesis)

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19 hours ago, Raxie said:

probablyyyyy why rumba is my arch nemesis

In my brief ballroom stint the noobs didn’t have to do rumba but it always looked like it’d feel soooo awkward and deceptively difficult!

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3 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

In my brief ballroom stint the noobs didn’t have to do rumba but it always looked like it’d feel soooo awkward and deceptively difficult!

 

I've been calling it the ballet of ballroom lately - it's SO technical and there's so many little nuances that are just so hard to pin down!

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1 minute ago, Raxie said:

I've been calling it the ballet of ballroom lately - it's SO technical and there's so many little nuances that are just so hard to pin down!

I bet! It's also harder to mask technical errors in a slower dance (for a regular layperson at least). But I feel like I'd just never be able to pull off the emotional side of it with a straight face. :D

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29 minutes ago, Mad Hatter said:

I bet! It's also harder to mask technical errors in a slower dance (for a regular layperson at least). But I feel like I'd just never be able to pull off the emotional side of it with a straight face. :D

 

That's kind of why it's my nemesis too - there's absolutely nothing to hide behind! If you mess something up the next step is so far away you just have to bask in your error for so long hahaha.  Also yeah the emotional side of it is really awkward for me for sure so I feel you on that.  I just... don't do that part of it XD That's why I like cha cha.  It's a lot of the same technique but faster and it's pretty much all smiles.

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On 8/23/2018 at 1:15 PM, Raxie said:

Hahaha I've been trying to think of what a Ravenpuff would look like too! Oddly enough I just did my Ilvermorny sorting and I think it kinda looks like a Pukwudgie, which is my Ilvermorny house - feathery black hair and chubby like a jiggly puff!

 

ilvermorny_pukwudgie_house_by_nerdyandik

Oh haha I was picturing something smaller and cuter! Kinda weird that ilvermony does magical creatures while Hogwarts did founder’s lastnames for their houses though.

 

Quote

 

I think that's a good argument to have - you both definitely need to set goals and boundaries in the relationship. 

For sure - not a bad argument to have by any stretch!

 

Quote

That's exciting! Jive and paso are so different from the other ones those make sense as being the ones you did.  Rumba is my arch nemesis though. Also I just found out the other day paso used to be a standard dance did you know that? That's so weird to me from the styling perspective but I guess it actually makes sense.

I actually did! We talk about how tango used to be a Latin dance occasionally in my studio too.

 

Quote

As a highly sarcastic person who loves to throw shade at my husband anyway, I can understand how tough it must be to not do that if you're dancing together.  It's definitely not constructive but it just feels so good. Hahaha. But also that's really cute.

Haha yes - it’s adorable but also something we gotta nip in the bud - makes me understand how hard parenting must be!

 

Quote

That's a great suggestion! I've definitely been struggling with connection (probablyyyyy why rumba is my arch nemesis)

Nah, rumba’s just your arch nemesis because it’s always the first one to get a new technique expectation thanks to being slow - it sucks for everyone (but especially short, fast dancers).

 

4 hours ago, Raxie said:

I've been calling it the ballet of ballroom lately - it's SO technical and there's so many little nuances that are just so hard to pin down!

Definitely not wrong - especially once you start breaking every beat into 1/4’s and sometimes having sequences of actions expected on each quarter (Blergh - but it does produce a nice end product!).

 

4 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

I bet! It's also harder to mask technical errors in a slower dance (for a regular layperson at least). But I feel like I'd just never be able to pull off the emotional side of it with a straight face. :D

I struggle with straight faces too! :P

 

3 hours ago, Raxie said:

That's kind of why it's my nemesis too - there's absolutely nothing to hide behind! If you mess something up the next step is so far away you just have to bask in your error for so long hahaha.  Also yeah the emotional side of it is really awkward for me for sure so I feel you on that.  I just... don't do that part of it XD That's why I like cha cha.  It's a lot of the same technique but faster and it's pretty much all smiles.

Oddly, emotional aspect is never a problem for me - idk if this helps, but my coach is really big on emphasizing the difference between the emotion felt by the dancers and the emotion perceived by the audience - basically, the audience is going to perceive a certain emotion based on the costumes, the music, and their preconceived notions of rumba so you don’t need to try to feel or portray “love” or “romance” and instead can just focus on interacting with your partner in a way that’s true to your relationship with them and the audience will read more than is there.

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15 hours ago, MikeW said:

Oh haha I was picturing something smaller and cuter! Kinda weird that ilvermony does magical creatures while Hogwarts did founder’s lastnames for their houses though.

 

That's an interesting point I didn't catch actually - they do have the whole back story of the people founding the school too.  I guess it's one of the differences between the founders and the spirit of the school?

 

15 hours ago, MikeW said:

Nah, rumba’s just your arch nemesis because it’s always the first one to get a new technique expectation thanks to being slow - it sucks for everyone (but especially short, fast dancers).

 

I am by no means short but I do like moving quickly so that's definitely a problem.  I'm also so used to dancing by myself that I really struggle with the push and pull connection.  I want to just do everything myself which I can kind of get away with to a point in other dances but just doesn't fly in rumba haha

 

15 hours ago, MikeW said:

Definitely not wrong - especially once you start breaking every beat into 1/4’s and sometimes having sequences of actions expected on each quarter (Blergh - but it does produce a nice end product!).

 

Ahh yes I just started learning some gold moves where it's like ok on the 1/4 beat face here but then hold for 2 beats and then turn on the half beat, but transfer your weight on the quarter beat and I'm like ok but can't I just like step forward and turn?! Hahah

 

15 hours ago, MikeW said:

Oddly, emotional aspect is never a problem for me - idk if this helps, but my coach is really big on emphasizing the difference between the emotion felt by the dancers and the emotion perceived by the audience - basically, the audience is going to perceive a certain emotion based on the costumes, the music, and their preconceived notions of rumba so you don’t need to try to feel or portray “love” or “romance” and instead can just focus on interacting with your partner in a way that’s true to your relationship with them and the audience will read more than is there.

 

I like this perspective a lot it may actually help me! A lot of the people in my studio get REALLY into it with the expressions and it really does look so good so sometimes I feel like it's something to aspire to and then sometimes I'm like I will never do that kthxbai. XD

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13 minutes ago, Raxie said:

I'm also so used to dancing by myself that I really struggle with the push and pull connection. 

Do you do social dancing or improv in your classes? For me it didn’t really click until I started dancing lindy hop which is mainly a social dance. In my ballroom classes we focused so much on choreo it was hard to let go and really understand it.

 

Also, whoever says that following is easy is grossly mistaken, it takes a lot of mindful practice to become a good follower!

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On 8/25/2018 at 8:43 AM, Raxie said:

That's an interesting point I didn't catch actually - they do have the whole back story of the people founding the school too.  I guess it's one of the differences between the founders and the spirit of the school?

Hmmm, now I want to Pottermore and get caught up on some of the lore! Can't be worse than my other internet holes I fall down.

 

On 8/25/2018 at 8:43 AM, Raxie said:

I am by no means short but I do like moving quickly so that's definitely a problem.  I'm also so used to dancing by myself that I really struggle with the push and pull connection.  I want to just do everything myself which I can kind of get away with to a point in other dances but just doesn't fly in rumba haha

Oh yes, that's something I've seen some friends struggle with too - there is one female coach who likes to say "there's nothing a man can do that can mess me up" as a way of really empowering followers to own their space and their movement. But even she would admit that being open to partnering allows one to both: A) stay in sync with a partner for choreography and B) be faster / more off-balance / more controlled / more fill-in-the-blank than one could without leveraging partnering.

 

On 8/25/2018 at 8:43 AM, Raxie said:

Ahh yes I just started learning some gold moves where it's like ok on the 1/4 beat face here but then hold for 2 beats and then turn on the half beat, but transfer your weight on the quarter beat and I'm like ok but can't I just like step forward and turn?! Hahah

Haha oh dear - is that an actual figure you're referencing? I'm racking my brain thinking of the syllabus and blanking on anything with that specific pattern of instructions lol.

 

On 8/25/2018 at 8:43 AM, Raxie said:

I like this perspective a lot it may actually help me! A lot of the people in my studio get REALLY into it with the expressions and it really does look so good so sometimes I feel like it's something to aspire to and then sometimes I'm like I will never do that kthxbai. XD

I'm glad it might help!! I'm often a reserved person, but can get into "overperforming" or "overrehearsed performance" to quote my coach by way of overcompensating. Just naturally relating and reacting to my partner in the moment in a way that's true to our relationship as people has been really helpful as a change for me.

 

Dance update: coach threw an idea out there that has my wheels spinning - there's a truly great partner option out there - hardworking, dedicated, around my skill level and someone I communicate well with in a practice setting, and it's the guy I've been practicing syllabus with on and off the past year. Not yet sure what decision, if any, will be made with this info, but it's now something I'm mulling over in the back of my mind as a possible option for the future (unsure yet if that's the distant or very near-term future). He pointed out that I dance better with the guy than I ever have with any other partner he's seen me with - there was a natural, easy quality about our practicing that's not as present in either of us in other partnerships (prompted by seeing us practicing this past week while he was also there practicing with his pro partner). And that this guy is already stronger than any of my available female options in the city. Again, no action required urgently, but now my wheels are spinning as they often do. (Note: it'd definitely mean competing in a different circuit or set of circuits than with a heterosex partnership, but there is some good quality competition out there for same-sex couples so it's not like we'd be training for nothing either). So ya, Sunday tumultuous thoughts day? Seems par for the course lol.

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Knowing nothing about the difference between the different circuits and how it would potentially affect your future career options (if at all?) I think it sounds like a preeetty cool partnering choice!  

 

14 hours ago, MikeW said:

there is one female coach who likes to say "there's nothing a man can do that can mess me up" as a way of really empowering followers to own their space and their movement.

Oh I don't know, being off beat is pretty infuriating! 

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3 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

Knowing nothing about the difference between the different circuits and how it would potentially affect your future career options (if at all?) I think it sounds like a preeetty cool partnering choice!  

Future career is a concern, but like my coach pointed out: "a title is a title" and in some ways that's very, very true. It'd honestly be a more fun competitive circuit - we'd end up doing more collegiate events since most of them fall in the "we allow same sex couples to enter the general pool" category.

 

3 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

Oh I don't know, being off beat is pretty infuriating! 

Caveats:

  • She was speaking as a competitor to competitors
  • There was some minimum assumption of skill

But to her point, if your skill level as a partner (of either role) is high enough and you have total command of your space, there's very little someone else can do to throw you off (at least assuming they don't literally shove you full force, there's boundaries to the statement) - and I believe it, she makes me look (and feel) like a better leader than I know I really am because she's *that* good. Even with dancing off beat, if you're solid enough over your feet, you can make it clear to your partner that you're not going to follow them off time (she did also suggest the direct verbal feedback approach in the context of a competitive partnership training).

 

Challenge Updates:

- Sleep's been a little light

- Calories were a little binge-y this weekend, but still on track-ish with the cut (goal: ~0.5 lb lost a week, should have me near 160 by Xmas)

- Still honoring my work boundaries to work out during lunchtime, and not feeling too stressed about things as a result.

 

Today's gym-ing:

Warm-up activations and handstands

Chin-ups: 5# x 8, 8, 7

- Super w/ Ab wheel: 18 x 3

Straight Arm Frog Stand: 15 s, 13 s, 10 s

- Super w/ Chair knees to chest: 12 x 3

Wall headstand pushup: 7, 6, 6

- Super w/ Weighted V-up: 10# x 8 x 3

Rings Tuck back lever: 3 x 10-15s (less tight tuck today = much higher difficulty - still getting used to the more advanced variation)

- Rings L-sits: 3 x 10-15s

- Pike compression holds: 3 x 10s

Finished with 4 x 10 box jumps, because quidditch

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On ‎8‎/‎25‎/‎2018 at 10:00 AM, Mad Hatter said:

Do you do social dancing or improv in your classes? For me it didn’t really click until I started dancing lindy hop which is mainly a social dance. In my ballroom classes we focused so much on choreo it was hard to let go and really understand it.

 

Also, whoever says that following is easy is grossly mistaken, it takes a lot of mindful practice to become a good follower!

 

I do! I have been dabbling in hustle, salsa and some social cha cha.  I actually really enjoy following in those settings and as long as I know the moves that I'm being led through I think it generally goes mostly OK.  I've gotten a lot better at not freaking out if I don't know what I'm being led into and not freezing which helps a lot.  My connection issue I think are more when there's choreography so I feel like I don't need to pay as much attention to the following since I already know what's happening and end up pulling away if that makes sense? Also the rumba awkwardness we were talking about above kind of makes me pull away more too haha

 

On ‎8‎/‎26‎/‎2018 at 8:29 PM, MikeW said:

Hmmm, now I want to Pottermore and get caught up on some of the lore! Can't be worse than my other internet holes I fall down.

 

Yaaassss <3 I hadn't been on in a while and fell down the Pottermore hole last week.  There was some fun stuff to catch up on!

 

Quote

 

Oh yes, that's something I've seen some friends struggle with too - there is one female coach who likes to say "there's nothing a man can do that can mess me up" as a way of really empowering followers to own their space and their movement. But even she would admit that being open to partnering allows one to both: A) stay in sync with a partner for choreography and B) be faster / more off-balance / more controlled / more fill-in-the-blank than one could without leveraging partnering.

 

I definitely like that view hahah. Girl power.  But also on the occasions I get the connection right I do find I am way more controlled and in-sync, which makes sense.  Got to find the right balance.

 

Quote

 

Haha oh dear - is that an actual figure you're referencing? I'm racking my brain thinking of the syllabus and blanking on anything with that specific pattern of instructions lol.

 

Hahah no it was an exaggeration, but I was more or less thinking about Three Alemanas and Three Threes.

 

Quote

I'm glad it might help!! I'm often a reserved person, but can get into "overperforming" or "overrehearsed performance" to quote my coach by way of overcompensating. Just naturally relating and reacting to my partner in the moment in a way that's true to our relationship as people has been really helpful as a change for me.

 

I have the opposite problem -  I'm actually extremely animated and excitable in real life but in performances I'm just like slap a smile on and let's do it! And barely change my face the whole time.  It's a genuine smile because I'm really having fun, but from videos I've seen of myself it looks kinda blah. I do really like this outlook though I'm pretty positive it will help.

 

Quote

 

Dance update: coach threw an idea out there that has my wheels spinning - there's a truly great partner option out there - hardworking, dedicated, around my skill level and someone I communicate well with in a practice setting, and it's the guy I've been practicing syllabus with on and off the past year. Not yet sure what decision, if any, will be made with this info, but it's now something I'm mulling over in the back of my mind as a possible option for the future (unsure yet if that's the distant or very near-term future). He pointed out that I dance better with the guy than I ever have with any other partner he's seen me with - there was a natural, easy quality about our practicing that's not as present in either of us in other partnerships (prompted by seeing us practicing this past week while he was also there practicing with his pro partner). And that this guy is already stronger than any of my available female options in the city. Again, no action required urgently, but now my wheels are spinning as they often do. (Note: it'd definitely mean competing in a different circuit or set of circuits than with a heterosex partnership, but there is some good quality competition out there for same-sex couples so it's not like we'd be training for nothing either). So ya, Sunday tumultuous thoughts day? Seems par for the course lol.

 

Oooh this is exciting! I think one of the cool things about ballroom that I love is there's no real age limit - it's not like so many other things where you're like "done" with you're 30-35.  So you could totally do this and leverage the strong partnership to improve and totally kill it/get all the titles, and if one or either or you in the future want to go back to the more standard competition circuits you could always do that in the future since it's not like there's a time limit in your life? What would this mean for the person you're currently partnering with?

 

20 hours ago, MikeW said:

Rings Tuck back lever: 3 x 10-15s (less tight tuck today = much higher difficulty - still getting used to the more advanced variation)

- Rings L-sits: 3 x 10-15s

- Pike compression holds: 3 x 10s

 

Did you do/are you doing the NF Rings program?

 

PS Sorry for hijacking your thread with all the ballroom-ness.  I can't help myself.

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Here because I wanted to check out the new Ravenclaw recruit :lol:   Next week's Quidditch is going to hurt :stung:

Are you a professional competitive dancer? Your gym programme looks very interesting too.

 

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1 hour ago, Raxie said:

I do! I have been dabbling in hustle, salsa and some social cha cha.  I actually really enjoy following in those settings and as long as I know the moves that I'm being led through I think it generally goes mostly OK.  I've gotten a lot better at not freaking out if I don't know what I'm being led into and not freezing which helps a lot.  My connection issue I think are more when there's choreography so I feel like I don't need to pay as much attention to the following since I already know what's happening and end up pulling away if that makes sense? Also the rumba awkwardness we were talking about above kind of makes me pull away more too haha

Ooh that totally makes sense - when practicing with an am partner, we'll usually agree to get the choreo up and running first, then make sure the partnering is actually there (since you technically don't *need* a connection to be comp-ready, it just helps things a lot). Different instructors may (and do) have different approaches to that though.

 

1 hour ago, Raxie said:

Yaaassss <3 I hadn't been on in a while and fell down the Pottermore hole last week.  There was some fun stuff to catch up on!

Oooooh yes. I know what I'm doing some random time this coming week!

 

1 hour ago, Raxie said:

I definitely like that view hahah. Girl power.  But also on the occasions I get the connection right I do find I am way more controlled and in-sync, which makes sense.  Got to find the right balance.

Oh yes, totally! And command of your connected arm and the weight you're putting into it is part of owning your own space! Empowerment for everyone!

 

1 hour ago, Raxie said:

Hahah no it was an exaggeration, but I was more or less thinking about Three Alemanas and Three Threes.

Haha gotcha - those two are two of my favorite gold figures - especially a good three threes, I LOOOOOOVE the cool shaping leads that are built in!

 

1 hour ago, Raxie said:

I have the opposite problem - I'm just like slap a smile on and let's do it! And barely change my face the whole time.  It's a genuine smile because I'm really having fun, but from videos I've seen of myself it looks kinda blah. I do really like this outlook though I'm pretty positive it will help.

Oh yes - def gone through that with performing too. And like you noticed, the unchanging-ness makes the face look weird after a bit - even cycling through a couple expressions helps!

 

1 hour ago, Raxie said:

Oooh this is exciting! I think one of the cool things about ballroom that I love is there's no real age limit - it's not like so many other things where you're like "done" with you're 30-35.  So you could totally do this and leverage the strong partnership to improve and totally kill it/get all the titles, and if one or either or you in the future want to go back to the more standard competition circuits you could always do that in the future since it's not like there's a time limit in your life? What would this mean for the person you're currently partnering with?

So true!!! I keep assuming my competitive career needs to look like my coach's, but the reality is, I get to define what my career looks like and how long into my life it goes, and that's awesome (I'm assuming I'll quit competing in a partnership around 40, but that still gives me OVER 12 YEARS to keep training and improving which is crazy-pants awesome). Plan to teach as long as I can walk though, I ADORE the connections I get to build with my students (one of them described as "tough but fair" and it made my week cause that's exactly what I aim for). As far as implications for the current partnership, it'd probably mean it needs to end since maintaining 2 competitive am partnerships at once isn't really feasible (money and time resources both get stretched thin). I'm really torn about it though, I like her a ton as a person and she is starting to come around and renew her commitment to the competitive process - I guess what I'm feeling is good because I'm discerning between good options, but it's still tough knowing that it'd be a big impact decision.

 

1 hour ago, Raxie said:

Did you do/are you doing the NF Rings program?

I think I looked at it briefly, but I ended up buying the GMB Rings One program (and Rings Two) and never getting past phase 1 of Rings 1 - whoops lol. But recently, I'm modeling my gym training as two upper body days with 3 sets each of 2 pull (vertical / horizontal) and 2 push (v / h) with core work supersetted in there. I'm roughly following some of the progression charts in "Defying Gravity" (pretty active subreddit if you don't want to buy the book) but even then, I DIY'ed my own program rather than following exactly what's recommended in the book. Probably will modify it slightly to aim for 60+ seconds of total work on static holds to get more skill practice in, but that's after this week since I've gotta rack up all the legs reps for an assassin mini.

 

1 hour ago, Raxie said:

PS Sorry for hijacking your thread with all the ballroom-ness.  I can't help myself.

It's not hijacking if I'm right next you steering the bus to the same spot! Lol.

 

Update: still in a bit of limbo, but same-sex partner and I are tentatively planning on a competition in mid-October AND taking a lesson with a visiting guest coach this weekend.

 

18 minutes ago, @mu said:

Here because I wanted to check out the new Ravenclaw recruit :lol:   Next week's Quidditch is going to hurt :stung:

Are you a professional competitive dancer? Your gym programme looks very interesting too.

Ahh welcome! :D I think Quidditch will hurt more for me and my fellow Ravenclaws (assuming we win) - I have no clue how you and @Mad Hatter put up such crazy legs numbers!

 

Not technically professional, but basically semi-pro (technically, I compete in the "Amateur" division for ballroom but most of my direct competition are people who will turn professional, so it's a de facto semi-pro division). And thanks! The gym program is mostly a result of rampant program hopping then finally settling on bodyweight exercises because I get less frustrated with them than barbell stuff. I'll be popping by your thread sometime soon too!

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21 minutes ago, MikeW said:

Ahh welcome! :D I think Quidditch will hurt more for me and my fellow Ravenclaws (assuming we win) - I have no clue how you and @Mad Hatter put up such crazy legs numbers!

 

That I can answer, for me, I guess one key is low to medium range reps (10 max on an AMRAP <= 20) but higher frequency. And the other thing is that I avoid too many quads dominant exercises, otherwise I die pretty quick. I focus on hamstrings and glutes, and do some quads here and there. But not enough to get bad DOMS the next day. I also do a lot of reps holding a ball on a flexed foot, which is pretty intense on the sciatic nerve and the calf. But I don't get major DOMS from it either.

Last Quidditch against Ravenclaw was borderline though (on the pain level) :P

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3 hours ago, Raxie said:

My connection issue I think are more when there's choreography so I feel like I don't need to pay as much attention to the following since I already know what's happening and end up pulling away if that makes sense?

It makes perfect sense, I found the same thing with choreography. That's why I was wondering if you did social dancing because at least it helps in understanding, even if it might be a bit tricky to apply it in practice.

 

1 hour ago, MikeW said:

It's not hijacking if I'm right next you steering the bus to the same spot! Lol.

Haha also even if I don't ballroom dance (or dance at all anymore) I'm still loving the conversations! It's super interesting!

 

1 hour ago, MikeW said:

Update: still in a bit of limbo, but same-sex partner and I are tentatively planning on a competition in mid-October AND taking a lesson with a visiting guest coach this weekend.

Exciting!

 

1 hour ago, @mu said:

That I can answer, for me, I guess one key is low to medium range reps (10 max on an AMRAP <= 20) but higher frequency. And the other thing is that I avoid too many quads dominant exercises, otherwise I die pretty quick. I focus on hamstrings and glutes, and do some quads here and there. But not enough to get bad DOMS the next day. I also do a lot of reps holding a ball on a flexed foot, which is pretty intense on the sciatic nerve and the calf. But I don't get major DOMS from it either.

 

DON'T TELL THEM OUR STRATEGIES! :D We need every advantage we can get haha.

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4 hours ago, MikeW said:

Ooh that totally makes sense - when practicing with an am partner, we'll usually agree to get the choreo up and running first, then make sure the partnering is actually there (since you technically don't *need* a connection to be comp-ready, it just helps things a lot). Different instructors may (and do) have different approaches to that though.

 

I tend to pick up on choreo pretty quickly, it's making it look good (which I think relates a lot to the partnering) that I struggle with. Like my feet more or less do the right thing but I just look really sloppy?

 

Quote

Oooooh yes. I know what I'm doing some random time this coming week!

 

So much new Potterdom to explore!

hogwarts.gif

 

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Oh yes, totally! And command of your connected arm and the weight you're putting into it is part of owning your own space! Empowerment for everyone!

 

One of my teachers last week said something similar that really clicked - that it's the followers job to keep the spacing and the leaders job to change it. It was kind of like an "ohhhhh I see" moment for me in terms of how much to give with my connected arm (talking about rumba specifically)

 

Quote

 

Haha gotcha - those two are two of my favorite gold figures - especially a good three threes, I LOOOOOOVE the cool shaping leads that are built in!

 

They do look really good... when done by someone other than me XD.  Eh, something to work towards.  I have issues with overturning the free spin in three threes and then losing my balance.  This is basically my issue with patty cakes too... turning is just hard. 

 

Quote

So true!!! I keep assuming my competitive career needs to look like my coach's, but the reality is, I get to define what my career looks like and how long into my life it goes, and that's awesome (I'm assuming I'll quit competing in a partnership around 40, but that still gives me OVER 12 YEARS to keep training and improving which is crazy-pants awesome). Plan to teach as long as I can walk though, I ADORE the connections I get to build with my students (one of them described as "tough but fair" and it made my week cause that's exactly what I aim for). As far as implications for the current partnership, it'd probably mean it needs to end since maintaining 2 competitive am partnerships at once isn't really feasible (money and time resources both get stretched thin). I'm really torn about it though, I like her a ton as a person and she is starting to come around and renew her commitment to the competitive process - I guess what I'm feeling is good because I'm discerning between good options, but it's still tough knowing that it'd be a big impact decision.

 

It was never my goal in starting up with ballroom but the friendships I'm making are really amazing.  I feel like other types of dance that's not there as much - at least in ballet it was pretty much everyone was super into themselves and not really that friendly.  Ballroom has more of the vibe I got from gymnastics in terms of competitive but still friendly and team-like if that makes sense.

 

You guys only just started dancing together though, right? I feel like it wouldn't be the hugest blow in the world in that case.  Are there many other open leads in your area?

 

Quote

It's not hijacking if I'm right next you steering the bus to the same spot! Lol.

 

Fair enough! Let's ride this bus 50mph all the way, Speed style. XD

 

Quote

Update: still in a bit of limbo, but same-sex partner and I are tentatively planning on a competition in mid-October AND taking a lesson with a visiting guest coach this weekend.

 

This is super exciting!!! And a great idea - I feel like you might be in a better place to make a decision after doing a comp with him and seeing how you guys take coaching together?

 

Quote

Not technically professional, but basically semi-pro (technically, I compete in the "Amateur" division for ballroom but most of my direct competition are people who will turn professional, so it's a de facto semi-pro division).

 

Do you have any plans of switching to competing in the professional division?

 

2 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

It makes perfect sense, I found the same thing with choreography. That's why I was wondering if you did social dancing because at least it helps in understanding, even if it might be a bit tricky to apply it in practice.

 

It definitely has helped! I actually used to HATE social dancing when I first started out but now I really enjoy it, but mostly only with people I know.  I'm not brave enough to dance with a stranger yet (actually I did once and it went pretty well tbh but it was still more on the stressful side than on the fun side).

 

Quote

Haha also even if I don't ballroom dance (or dance at all anymore) I'm still loving the conversations! It's super interesting!

 

All aboard the not really hijacked train - woo woo!

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On 8/28/2018 at 12:37 PM, Mad Hatter said:

Haha also even if I don't ballroom dance (or dance at all anymore) I'm still loving the conversations! It's super interesting!

Yesss glad to entertain!

 

On 8/28/2018 at 12:37 PM, Mad Hatter said:

Exciting!

Indeed!

 

On 8/28/2018 at 12:37 PM, Mad Hatter said:

DON'T TELL THEM OUR STRATEGIES! :D We need every advantage we can get haha.

Bahaha y'all do put your workouts in your challenge threads - it's definitely reverse engineer-able there.

 

On 8/28/2018 at 12:57 PM, @mu said:

:o oh no *facepalm*

 

That Hufflepuff thing again...

 

cartoon-shy-badger-colorful-vector-illus

Haha so relatable, as an IRL Hufflepuff.

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

I tend to pick up on choreo pretty quickly, it's making it look good (which I think relates a lot to the partnering) that I struggle with. Like my feet more or less do the right thing but I just look really sloppy?

Ahhh I hear you there for sure - the polishing is always where the tough work is for me too!

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

So much new Potterdom to explore!

hogwarts.gif

Yup! It's gonna be fun to sit down with my morning coffee these two vacation days (or I might end up researching python stuff to learn more about data sciencing - it's ok to do work-adjacent stuff on a holiday weekend if I'm excited to learn about it, right?).

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

One of my teachers last week said something similar that really clicked - that it's the followers job to keep the spacing and the leaders job to change it. It was kind of like an "ohhhhh I see" moment for me in terms of how much to give with my connected arm (talking about rumba specifically)

Oh yep, I like that analogy.

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

They do look really good... when done by someone other than me XD.  Eh, something to work towards.  I have issues with overturning the free spin in three threes and then losing my balance.  This is basically my issue with patty cakes too... turning is just hard. 

Ahh ya, I could see that - it's a devilish little hip twist - seems bigger but actually just a half turn, but OMG it looks so cool when done well. And yes, I do not envy you followers during patty cakes - so many precise direction changes!

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

It was never my goal in starting up with ballroom but the friendships I'm making are really amazing.  I feel like other types of dance that's not there as much - at least in ballet it was pretty much everyone was super into themselves and not really that friendly.  Ballroom has more of the vibe I got from gymnastics in terms of competitive but still friendly and team-like if that makes sense.

YES! Idk if it's true everywhere, but some studios do really well with student camaraderie - Brooklyn Dancesport Club by you is amazing in that for sure - I felt like I was surrounded by family the one time I was there.

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

You guys only just started dancing together though, right? I feel like it wouldn't be the hugest blow in the world in that case.  Are there many other open leads in your area?

Ya, only a few months in - it's mostly that it'd really suck for her, but wouldn't be the biggest blow for me - there aren't actually a ton of open leads in the area, and I'm definitely higher skill and more schedule flexible than her next best option.

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

Fair enough! Let's ride this bus 50mph all the way, Speed style. XD

50? Nah, we're cranking it up to 100 and driving straight off the cliff!!

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

This is super exciting!!! And a great idea - I feel like you might be in a better place to make a decision after doing a comp with him and seeing how you guys take coaching together?

Nah, I already know what I need to - he's super smart, motivated to incorporate new info, and we can communicate well between each other about when things aren't working well - as long as he's got a drive to compete (or a willingness to compete and train hard, even if it's fueled by something other than competitive drive), we're set. It's really just the internal discernment, plus maintaining my current status quo for as long as it makes sense because I'll get even more partnered training time than I would if I made a choice ASAP. He and I agreed we want to learn how to make syllabus Latin look competitive AF so we've got a project to work toward there as well, which is awesome (I'd love to actually put closed syllabus on the floor against open choreography and win - I know it's doable and it embodies what I love about dancing).

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

Do you have any plans of switching to competing in the professional division?

TBD - it depends on if I get to a point where either A) I've achieved everything I can or want to as an amateur or B - have a partnering option that pulls me into pros.

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

It definitely has helped! I actually used to HATE social dancing when I first started out but now I really enjoy it, but mostly only with people I know.  I'm not brave enough to dance with a stranger yet (actually I did once and it went pretty well tbh but it was still more on the stressful side than on the fun side).

I hear you there! I think the new people are the part I don't love about social dancing, but I LOVE doing lead/follow with my same-sex partner (or at least lead-follow rumba, we've gotten to a point where we slowly have learned how to dance most of the syllabus variations together as lead/follow, including 3 separate aida endings). Dancing with total strangers is still a little nerve wracking sometimes, but I want to start social dancing more to de-sensitize to it (really, I just want to dance all the time and social dancing is a way to just add more to the total dancing time).

 

On 8/28/2018 at 2:58 PM, Raxie said:

All aboard the not really hijacked train - woo woo!

giphy.gif

 

OK, now that I've written a novel just keeping the ballroom discussion going, updates from the past couple days:

  • Got a bit short on sleep the past couple nights - mostly from staying up socializing on Monday post-dance practice then not unwinding super quickly on Tuesday post-practice (6-7 hours, which is livable for a bit if not long-term)
  • Haven't been tracking calories AT ALL, but scale changes suggest that I'm still staying on track or maybe undershooting a bit on the cutting plan - now to keep it going while having a good friend visit this weekend!
  • Dance practices have been going well and I'm feeling positive about them

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I have to say I love social dancing, dancing with new people is exciting! Especially when a dance totally clicks and you find an instant connection, it’s very rare but it makes it oh so special and magical!

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Oh, hai, don't mind me, just stealthily tiptoe-stalking past in a totally noncreepy way that is really not at all creepy ... 

 

tumblr_n3a1z6OsXz1rey868o1_500.gif

 

Sounds like things are all around going pretty good for you, so yay! Also, loving the "hijack" - I haven't danced competitively for years'n'years but I still love reading what y'all write about it! 

 

On 8/23/2018 at 9:51 AM, MikeW said:

 

  • Positive mindset is still mostly there - I'm currently reading a book on Jesuit spirituality (Catholic version of hippie spiritual practices, basically) and it's been really eye-opening to try to "find God in all things" (even the co-worker who's talking loudly all the time and doesn't cover his mouth when he coughs). No giant revelations, but daily re-centering of some sort is happening, and that's still something.

 

Title? (yeah, I've come to rely on you for book recs - is that wrong? :) ) 

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7 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

I have to say I love social dancing, dancing with new people is exciting! Especially when a dance totally clicks and you find an instant connection, it’s very rare but it makes it oh so special and magical!

Haha this may highlight a difference - I’ve historically been very socially anxious, though maybe that’ll go away as I go out and dance more!

 

2 hours ago, Gemma said:

Oh, hai, don't mind me, just stealthily tiptoe-stalking past in a totally noncreepy way that is really not at all creepy ... 

 

tumblr_n3a1z6OsXz1rey868o1_500.gif

AHHHHHHHH I’M SOOOO GLAD YOU’RE HERE!!!!!! Def been wondering where you’ve been / hoping you’ve been doing well, and I’m glad to see you! How’ve things been? Please tell me no more appliances have decided to crap out on you and your husband.

 

2 hours ago, Gemma said:

Sounds like things are all around going pretty good for you, so yay! Also, loving the "hijack" - I haven't danced competitively for years'n'years but I still love reading what y'all write about it! 

Glad to entertain!! Expect to see all the things about it as things keep going.

 

2 hours ago, Gemma said:

Title? (yeah, I've come to rely on you for book recs - is that wrong? :) ) 

Not at all - clearly we have similar taste!! Title of this one is “the Jesuit guide to (almost) everything” by James Martin and I’d highly recommend it. Still not through it but it’s definitely helped to transform my thinking about God and spirituality.

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1 hour ago, MikeW said:

Haha this may highlight a difference - I’ve historically been very socially anxious, though maybe that’ll go away as I go out and dance more!

For me it was never too bad because in Lindy hop there’s a protocol to follow. First of all, you don’t typically say no to a dance, so there’s no fear of rejection. Then you dance exactly two dances. Afterwards you thank your partner but if you don’t like the them you never have to dance with them again. The best part in all of this is you don’t have to chit chat with anyone, you can just dance. :D So for me it felt social but without pressure to do much actual socialising, which was great. :P I have no idea if the expectations are different for different dances and/or parts of the world though.

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On 8/30/2018 at 10:23 PM, MikeW said:

AHHHHHHHH I’M SOOOO GLAD YOU’RE HERE!!!!!! Def been wondering where you’ve been / hoping you’ve been doing well, and I’m glad to see you! How’ve things been? Please tell me no more appliances have decided to crap out on you and your husband.

 

 

LOL - no more appliances, but we are still finding random damage from the lightning strike. All is well, just been a crazy month, mostly work stuff, and my personal internet time is very limited. I'll be here checking on my Warrior tribe on a limited basis for the rest of this challenge, and hopefully will have a moment or two to myself to actually participate in next go-round. 

 

On 8/30/2018 at 10:23 PM, MikeW said:

Not at all - clearly we have similar taste!! Title of this one is “the Jesuit guide to (almost) everything” by James Martin and I’d highly recommend it. Still not through it but it’s definitely helped to transform my thinking about God and spirituality.

 

Now on my list - thanks! 

 

On 8/30/2018 at 11:53 PM, Mad Hatter said:

For me it was never too bad because in Lindy hop there’s a protocol to follow. First of all, you don’t typically say no to a dance, so there’s no fear of rejection. Then you dance exactly two dances. Afterwards you thank your partner but if you don’t like the them you never have to dance with them again. The best part in all of this is you don’t have to chit chat with anyone, you can just dance. :D So for me it felt social but without pressure to do much actual socialising, which was great. :P I have no idea if the expectations are different for different dances and/or parts of the world though.

 

This is what I like about contra. You are expected to dance with pretty much everyone, but no one expects you to talk to them :) It is the absolute only form of social dancing I can get the hubs to engage in, and that rarely.

We took shag lessons once, and after the first session he told me he could not handle being expected to partner "dozens of women I don't even know." Shag isn't choreographed or called, so you have to develop some level of lead/follow communication, so it feels more intimate? That's my best guess, anyway, why one makes him uncomfortable and the other doesn't. 

In my neck of the woods, shag and contra are the only social dancing games in town, so ... I don't dance much anymore. 

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