Each week, I post a new step of the week so dancers can expand their line dancing repertoire. However, as I watch my dancers tackle new moves each week, I always notice little idiosyncrasies that don’t always convey in written instruction (see: “Carry Your Own Weight” for one example).
Well this week, I noticed one of the other plagues of new dancers… the big steps! Many times, when someone is starting out, they often exaggerate moves. However, because you often need to move quickly whether in a particular step or just transitioning from one step to another, you need to actually take SMALLER steps than you normally would.
The step where this error most commonly occurs is the grapevine. The step, which entails stepping away, crossing behind, stepping away again and tapping, often leads to what I like to call, “the line dance straddle”. People inherently try to take WIDE steps out and when they do, they can’t get their balance properly and can’t move quickly enough to the cross behind.
So as you’re learning new steps or new dances, keep in mind that side-to-side steps should be no wider than your hip-width and forward/back movements should be about the length of a normal walking stride. Unless you’re trying to avoid a crack (and thus, break your mother’s back), you typically don’t reach every time you step forward, so do the same for dancing… and we’ll try to keep the cracks off the floor so Mama’s safe. 😉