Using Floor Craft in Real Life

Quick reminder! The Solo Practice Guide giveaway on Twitter ends December 10! Get your entries in by then! See my pinned tweet on how to enter.

Some weeks, I log onto WordPress and I know exactly what I want to share with you. Other weeks, I stare at a blank blog post begging me to “start writing” and I got nothing.

This week is somewhere in between. Ideas are swirling without settling long enough for me to see them clearly, so I’m just going to trust the flow of my creative process and see where we end up! Care to wander with me?

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The Solo Practice Guide and DanceVision

Coming to you midweek to share something exciting! Back in the beginning of November, I had the chance to sit down with Wayne Eng and chat about The Solo Practice Guide for Ballroom Dancing. If you don’t recognize the name, Wayne is the owner of DanceVision, the largest producer of ballroom dance educational materials including the DVIDA syllabus and a huge library of training videos. He’s also the owner of Emerald Ball Dancesport Championships and one of the organizers of the United States Dance Championships. Needless to say, Wayne’s a busy man, so just the fact that we could find a date and time when we were both available was exciting!

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Dancer Holiday Gift Guide

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! The world starts to look almost as sparkly as a ballroom competition. We’ll be eating too much and enjoying every bite. The same ten holiday songs will play on the radio until the end of the year. Families get together to eat, laugh, argue, and then eat and laugh some more.

Then there’s the gift giving and receiving. While I don’t care much for shopping in general, I love finding the perfect gift for someone. Something that will light them up and they’ll actually use.

If you’re shopping this week for the perfect gift for the dancer in your life (maybe it’s you!), check out these options that I’ve curated from personal experience and that support other dancers.

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What if you never “make it”?

I have a bad habit of getting too far ahead of myself and then when I look back to where I am now, the gap appears so huge that I start to lose hope that I’ll ever close it. Ever happen to you? Maybe you see someone else more advanced in the dance studio and think you’ll never be able to reach that level. If you’re like me, you might even wonder if you should just give up now.

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Remember Why You Dance

Haters gonna hate, but I’m too busy dancing to notice.

The Girl with the Tree Tattoo

I met up with a dance friend last week and our conversation inspired me to share an important message on social media and now with you here on this blog.

The ballroom world, like any other sport, has its dark side. There are the stories of studios or teachers pressuring or manipulating students into buying more lessons than they need or signing up for events they’re not ready for. You don’t need to spend much time in the competitive world before you start hearing stories of certain dancers being favored over others because of who they dance with, who their coaches are, or how much money they spend at competitions.

Then there is the gossip, petty remarks and judge-y comments about people’s partnerships, costumes, dancing abilities, whether or not they’re getting special treatment from whomever and why, etc., etc.

It’s so easy to get sucked into the dark side of ballroom and get caught up in the gossip and pettiness. But to be frank, I ain’t got the time or the energy for that nonsense, and I don’t want you to waste your time or energy either.

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Getting Back on Track

In the last two weeks, I’ve had two back-to-back conferences (two days and three days) plus a one-on-one meetup about business, I’ve been interviewed twice about the books and journals I’ve published, and I consulted on interviews with other dancers. And I still managed to feed myself and my dogs and get to the day job on time. For an introvert like me, it was a LOT! While I’m grateful for all of these opportunities, I’m also grateful to be able to stay home for most of the weekend and do quieter things like write this blog post and go to the studio tomorrow for solo practice.

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Transitions and Uplevels

They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.
― Andy Warhol

Boom. Mic drop, right? For anyone wishing Life was different, what are you waiting for?

Before I elaborate, I need to remind you that we’re down to the last few hours to preorder A Journal for the Whole Dance Journey and The Choreography Journal. After today, the cart closes and the journals won’t be available again until after the preorders have been filled.

So again, I ask, “what are you waiting for?” 😉

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Write Your Dance (Something New This Way Comes!)

I adore the written word. Ever since I was a little girl, I have preferred to communicate through writing. I was a shy kid who grew into a socially anxious young adult, so it was difficult to just talk to people, particularly if they were strangers. Writing gave me the space and time to think about what I wanted to say, see it plainly in front of me, and then modify if it came out wrong without the pressure of someone standing in front of me waiting for me to speak.

As a more-or-less well-adjusted adult, I’ve developed stronger verbal communication skills, but I still love writing (obviously). Crafting the perfect sentence is an art form to me. I geek out over grammar and how a simple comma can completely change your message.

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Beauty in the Basics

Happy to see that I’m not the only ballroom technique geek out there! I loved reading all of the comments on last week’s blog post, echoing the appreciation for technique in our dancing. The further we advance on our dance journeys, the more important technique becomes and frankly, the harder it is to apply if we didn’t establish a strong foundation in the beginning.

So how about that foundation?

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Ballroom Technique Geek

Before I forget, I want to remind everyone to sign up for the Practice Ballroom Dance mailing list if you want first dibs on the new products coming out very soon (eek! very soon!). I’ll be celebrating these new residents of my shop with special discounts and bonuses, but you have to be on the list! And don’t worry, I don’t email you very often unless I have something special for you or something dance-related came up that I think is important and you shouldn’t miss.

Ok, on to my topic for today, something I totally geek out over but others may think tedious – technique!

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