Google Groups no longer supports new Usenet posts or subscriptions. Historical content remains viewable.
Dismiss

hustle and the laws of physics

5 views
Skip to first unread message

Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 9, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/9/95
to
I was wondering why some women pulled on me so hard when dancing
hustle and exactly how much force was required to move back and forth
in a fast slotted dance like the hustle.

Before someone adds that hustle should be a light dance and no force
should be required, I'd like to point out that movement in dancing must
obey the laws of physics. Any movement back and forth indicates a
change in velocity with respect to time and this requires a force. The
only question is where the force comes from, the floor or ones
partner.

So I made some measurements, pulled out my old physics textbooks and
made some calculations.

According a measure per minute chart posted by Jay Dusenbury, hustle
tempo in 28-30 mpm. This corresponds to 112-120 beats per minute or in
the range of 500 to 535 milliseconds per beat. A hustle open and close
basic requires 6 beats to do 8 steps (&1 2 3&4 5 6) or in the range of
3.0 and 3.22 seconds for a woman to move up the slot and return to her
starting position.

At the local Tuesday night hustle dance, I was able to measure slot
lengths in the range of about 1-2 meters (3-6 feet) depending on the
height and energy of the dancers. A typical slot was about 1.3 meters
(4 feet) in length. The music was averaging 120 bpm or even a little
faster at times.

The minimum acceleration required to move back and forth across a
1.3 meter slot at 120 bpm is 2.31 meters/second/second. This is
equivalent to 0.24 G's or almost 1/4th the force of gravity. To put
this in terms of something you can feel, if a lady weighing 120 pounds
were to solely depend on her partner to pull her up and down the slot,
the force required would be equivalent to holding a 28 pound weight.

And this is the minimum possible force, assuming a constant
acceleration towards the center of the slot. A more reasonable
acceleration profile would be a periodic motion where the acceleration
towards the center of the slot was proportional to the distance from
the middle, e.g. coast in the middle of the slot and push on the floor
the most when stopping and turning around at the ends of the slot.
This periodic motion requires a max acceleration of 0.29 G's at the
ends of the slot.

In order for a woman not to pull on her partner when doing a hustle
basic at the above dimensions and speed, she needs to take a back step
of 7 to 9 inches behind her at the end of the slot (on the "3" count or
second slow, NOT on the "&" or the first step of the coaster, which
should be a "together") to get enough force off the floor to accelerate
herself. This back step gives a good hustle follower the look of a
split weight step where there body seems to be between their two feet
instead of over one foot; but in actuality the acceleration will put
all their weight over the back foot.

In actuality, I expect to feel a few pounds of connection when leading
a hustle basic with a good partner. So the womans acceleration might be
split 90% from the floor and 10% from the hands.

In addition, the total leg force required to provide both the lateral
force to accelerate up the slot and the vertical force to counteract
the force of gravity is an extra 3-4% over the normal standing force.
I think that failing to provide this extra leg force leads to the
(incorrect) bounce I sometimes see in beginners hustle, where they sink
or skid into the floor on the "1" count (second step of the coaster).

for reference:
hustle open and close basic, woman's footwork and timing:
timing - & 1 2 3,& 4 5 6
R L R L,R L R L
together forward forward back, together forward back back
or quick quick slow slow, quick quick slow slow.
8 steps in 6 beats.
"together forward" is sometimes called a "coaster step".

Any corrections to my physics calculations would be appreciated.

---
Ronald H. Nicholson, Jr. r...@engr.sgi.com, r...@netcom.com
#include <canonical.disclaimer> // I speak only for myself, etc.


Icono Clast

unread,
Aug 9, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/9/95
to

RN}Any corrections to my physics calculations would be appreciated.

I can't believe I understood the whole thing! What a fine exposition!
I also have no idea how to make use of the information but I'm
fascinated by the fact that you bothered to create it. Thanks.
---
* SLMR 2.1a #346 * Are you an accomplished Hustler? -- Travis Kershner

Rahul Dhesi

unread,
Aug 9, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/9/95
to
In <rhnDD0...@netcom.com> r...@netcom.com (Ron Nicholson) writes:

>At the local Tuesday night hustle dance, I was able to measure slot
>lengths in the range of about 1-2 meters (3-6 feet) depending on the
>height and energy of the dancers. A typical slot was about 1.3 meters
>(4 feet) in length. The music was averaging 120 bpm or even a little
>faster at times.

Thanks for making the effort. Two minor points:

1. Good dancers will shorten the slot for faster music.
2. The feet move the full length of the slot, but in most hustle
moves, the center of gravity of the body will move considerably
less. (Lean back when decelerating, lean forward when accelerating.)
--
Rahul Dhesi <dh...@rahul.net>
"please ignore Dhesi" -- Mark Crispin <m...@CAC.Washington.EDU>

Victor Eijkhout

unread,
Aug 9, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/9/95
to
In article <rhnDD0...@netcom.com> r...@netcom.com (Ron Nicholson) writes:

> To put
> this in terms of something you can feel, if a lady weighing 120 pounds
> were to solely depend on her partner to pull her up and down the slot,
> the force required would be equivalent to holding a 28 pound weight.

> In order for a woman not to pull on her partner when doing a hustle


> basic at the above dimensions and speed, she needs to take a back step
> of 7 to 9 inches behind her at the end of the slot

As a corollary: a woman who thinks she needs to hang back from
you will easily exert 50+ pounds of force on you.

> And this is the minimum possible force, assuming a constant
> acceleration towards the center of the slot.

I.e.: x''=c. That would give a nasty jar in the middle of the slot.

> A more reasonable
> acceleration profile would be a periodic motion where the acceleration
> towards the center of the slot was proportional to the distance from
> the middle,

So: x''=-cx which is a spring action.

> e.g. coast in the middle of the slot and push on the floor
> the most when stopping and turning around at the ends of the slot.

Sounds basically correct. for the next refinement on your calculations,
I think you need a model where in the middle part
of the slot there is basically no force, only at the ends.

> This periodic motion requires a max acceleration of 0.29 G's at the
> ends of the slot.

Under the assumption of a spring, yes. If you would try a rope plus
a spring :-) you can have considerably more. The limit case of
a follower who holds her arms completely stiff gives +oo G's.

--
Victor Eijkhout
405 Hilgard Ave .............................. `We must brush aside the ACLU
Department of Mathematics, UCLA ................. and others who want to get
Los Angeles CA 90024 ..................... hung up on constitutional rights.'
phone: +1 310 825 2173 / 9036 ............................... [Senator Exon]
http://www.math.ucla.edu/~eijkhout/

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 12, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/12/95
to
In article <rhnDD0...@netcom.com>, r...@netcom.com (Ron Nicholson) says:
>
>I was wondering why some women pulled on me so hard when dancing
>hustle and exactly how much force was required to move back and forth
>in a fast slotted dance like the hustle.
>
>Before someone adds that hustle should be a light dance and no force
>should be required, I'd like to point out that movement in dancing must
>obey the laws of physics. Any movement back and forth indicates a
>change in velocity with respect to time and this requires a force. The
>only question is where the force comes from, the floor or ones
>partner.
>
>So I made some measurements, pulled out my old physics textbooks and
>made some calculations.
>
>et cetera

WOW! I'm impressed! I regularly apply the laws of physics in what I
teach for Whip/Push/West Coast Swing, but I've always worked off basic
concepts like Newton's laws. I've never actually done any numeric
calculations except in regards to counterbalance moves (in which the
ratio of the angles of incline of the partners is inversely proportional
to the weight ratio between the two).

Anyway, my question is this - if you maintain a constant connection,
10 or 15 or 20 pounds of pull doesn't seem like very much. How much
does the average briefcase or purse weigh?

I've been reading numerous posts saying that the "&" step of the hustle
should be a together rather than a rock back.

I'm here to tell you that this is a PURELY STYLISTIC PREFERENCE!!!!!!!

In Texas, the majority of the hustle dancers I have seen dance with a
rock back for the woman on "&" and a step forward on "1". I've danced
with many of them, and none of them feel heavy to me. The exception is
on spins. Coming out of spins, the woman must take her "&" step in place
and then step forward on the left. In other moves, however, the back
step on the "&" gives an extension that seems to be missing when the woman
steps in place on "&".

The question is - do you want the dance to be TOTALLY smooth or do you
want more extension and some use of counterbalance?

To my mind, it very much reminds me of the issue in West Coast Swing of
whether the woman walks forward on one or hesitates until the "&" after
one. Frankly, I think it usually depends on the lead. If the man doesn't
lead until count "1" and the woman is already coming forward, she's
BACKLEADING. On the other hand, if the man leads on the "&" before 1
(6& or 8&), and the woman tries to take a hesitation, she's fighting him
and will feel heavy to lead.

I think the same holds true for hustle. To give the woman a hard and
fast rule to step in place on "&" OR to rock back on "&" is not teaching
her to follow the lead. What she needs to learn is to KEEP THE RHYTHM
in her footwork. The man's lead will then determine her exact foot.

This is a concept we try to apply regularly in our teaching. For example,
what is the woman's correct footwork on a left side pass or underarm pass.
Does she turn on beat 2? 2&? 3? 3&? 4? 4&? Guess what! Every single one
of them works! Her job is take a strong walk-walk down the slot and then do
a triple step, wherever she may be. When she runs out of arm, she'll turn
around. Simple. So the point is, depending on how long both partners arms
are, how long their legs are, how big steps they take, how strong the man
leads, etc., the turn of the underarm turn can be anywhere between "2" and
"4&".

We need to teach women to follow their partner, NOT the exact foot placement
instructions that this or that instructor says is the "right" way to do it.

albert boulanger

unread,
Aug 13, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/13/95
to
In article <40j4v6$q...@anarchy.io.com> win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:


This is a concept we try to apply regularly in our teaching. For example,
what is the woman's correct footwork on a left side pass or underarm pass.
Does she turn on beat 2? 2&? 3? 3&? 4? 4&? Guess what! Every single one
of them works! Her job is take a strong walk-walk down the slot and then do
a triple step, wherever she may be. When she runs out of arm, she'll turn
around. Simple. So the point is, depending on how long both partners arms
are, how long their legs are, how big steps they take, how strong the man
leads, etc., the turn of the underarm turn can be anywhere between "2" and
"4&".

Yeah, this is this element of robustness or structural stability that
I believe a dance from must have to have a permanence in time and to
become popular.


Regards,
Albert Boulanger
aboul...@ldeo.columbia.edu


Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 14, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/14/95
to
In article <40j4v6$q...@anarchy.io.com>, Scott Allen <win...@io.com> wrote:
>Anyway, my question is this - if you maintain a constant connection,
>10 or 15 or 20 pounds of pull doesn't seem like very much. How much
>does the average briefcase or purse weigh?

The 30 pound number in the absolute minimum. Less smooth force
patterns can easily require half a G (half the womans weight!) in force
to turn her movement direction around. Hopefully it comes from the
floor and not my wrists, arms, shoulders and back. The ability to
dance with a light connection is just as important in a fast Hustle as
it is in a West Coast Swing.

>I've been reading numerous posts saying that the "&" step of the hustle
>should be a together rather than a rock back.

If the womans weight is going backward on the "&" step, she has very
little time to reverse herself and accelerate forward for the next
step. Although it is possible to do this and be smooth, many women
when using a rock back on the "&" step, yank their partners back
with them or end up not moving anywhere on the next (coaster) step.

>To my mind, it very much reminds me of the issue in West Coast Swing of
>whether the woman walks forward on one or hesitates until the "&" after
>one. Frankly, I think it usually depends on the lead. If the man doesn't
>lead until count "1" and the woman is already coming forward, she's
>BACKLEADING.

Just to be clear, there is a difference between West Coast Swing and
Hustle (at least as danced around here). In West Coast, the follower
should never step forward on "1" unless led; in Hustle the woman
should always step forward on "1" unless prevented (&1 2 3 count).
This give Hustle a more ballistic feel than West Coast Swing.

>We need to teach women to follow their partner, NOT the exact foot placement
>instructions that this or that instructor says is the "right" way to do it.

Yes. Very important in any partner dance.

---
Ronald H. Nicholson, Jr. r...@netcom.com, r...@engr.sgi.com

Bart L. McJunkin

unread,
Aug 14, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/14/95
to
Scott Allen (win...@io.com) wrote:

: Anyway, my question is this - if you maintain a constant connection,
: 10 or 15 or 20 pounds of pull doesn't seem like very much. How much
: does the average briefcase or purse weigh?

This is an incredible amount of force! If this doesn't feel heavy to
you, then we differ greatly on the definition of heavy.

: I've been reading numerous posts saying that the "&" step of the hustle


: should be a together rather than a rock back.

: I'm here to tell you that this is a PURELY STYLISTIC PREFERENCE!!!!!!!

I'm here to tell you that that is WRONG. The woman is not
moving her center backward on "&." Why should she rock
back. The return on "1" from a rock back is likely to make
her hop in the air.

: In Texas, the majority of the hustle dancers I have seen dance with a

: rock back for the woman on "&" and a step forward on "1". I've danced
: with many of them, and none of them feel heavy to me. The exception is
: on spins. Coming out of spins, the woman must take her "&" step in place
: and then step forward on the left. In other moves, however, the back
: step on the "&" gives an extension that seems to be missing when the woman
: steps in place on "&".
:
: The question is - do you want the dance to be TOTALLY smooth or do you
: want more extension and some use of counterbalance?

You shouldn't be trying to get extension on the "&."
That's rodeo swing. Hustle is smooth.

: I think the same holds true for hustle. To give the woman a hard and


: fast rule to step in place on "&" OR to rock back on "&" is not teaching
: her to follow the lead. What she needs to learn is to KEEP THE RHYTHM
: in her footwork. The man's lead will then determine her exact foot.

Hustle is different from WCS. In the Hustle closed basic,
the man brings her forward while he does the check step. He
doesn't rock her back like a WCS throwout.

: This is a concept we try to apply regularly in our teaching. For example,


: what is the woman's correct footwork on a left side pass or underarm pass.
: Does she turn on beat 2? 2&? 3? 3&? 4? 4&? Guess what! Every single one
: of them works! Her job is take a strong walk-walk down the slot and then do
: a triple step, wherever she may be. When she runs out of arm, she'll turn
: around. Simple. So the point is, depending on how long both partners arms
: are, how long their legs are, how big steps they take, how strong the man
: leads, etc., the turn of the underarm turn can be anywhere between "2" and
: "4&".

: We need to teach women to follow their partner, NOT the exact foot placement


: instructions that this or that instructor says is the "right" way to do it.

What's wrong with an instructor who has enough courage and
strength of conviction to say "this is the right way to do
this?" They usually have a good reason. Pick a basic
footwork and then teach the real rules of WCS:

ie Side Pass:

Man leads on 1 (no other lead is necessary for the Side Pass)
Be close to your partner on 2
Stay near the location of your 4 step
Don't interfere with your partner on the anchor.
Be ready to move on 1

Bart.
####################################################
mcju...@spk.hp.com
Tel: 509-921-3449
Mail: Hewlett-Packard Company
Bart Mcjunkin, 3WU
24001 E Mission Ave
SPOKANE, WA 99019-9599

Victor Eijkhout

unread,
Aug 14, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/14/95
to
In article <DDBFF...@hpcvsnz.cv.hp.com> mcju...@spk.hp.com (Bart L. McJunkin) writes:

> : Anyway, my question is this - if you maintain a constant connection,
> : 10 or 15 or 20 pounds of pull doesn't seem like very much. How much
> : does the average briefcase or purse weigh?
>
> This is an incredible amount of force! If this doesn't feel heavy to
> you, then we differ greatly on the definition of heavy.

Look at it this way. Do you want to lift an above average briefcase
(and 10 pounds, that is a laptop with accessories plus a few books :-)
every 1.5 seconds for a few minutes straight? I'd rather not.

> : I've been reading numerous posts saying that the "&" step of the hustle
> : should be a together rather than a rock back.
>
> : I'm here to tell you that this is a PURELY STYLISTIC PREFERENCE!!!!!!!
>
> I'm here to tell you that that is WRONG. The woman is not
> moving her center backward on "&."

Ah, but there is a difference between stepping back instead of together
and moving your centre back. If a rockback is understood as
`step back right, replace left' then we will probably agree that
this is not the way hustle is (supposed to be?) done.
But it is possible for the & step to be back and the subsequent
1 or 3, depending on how you count, to go forward. I was watching
a beginning hustle class the other day, and Patricia Reeves (a longtime
NY style hustle dancer) does not do a together step, but rather
a back in 3rd or maybe even 5th position. Her 1 is then definitely
forward.

Btw, I danced with her and was thoroughly confused. I'm not good
enough yet that I can keep up with a woman who syncopates the
hell out of her hustle. I felt just as small as when I first
ran into WCS syncopations. Probably smaller, because I thought
I had made some progress since then :-(

Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 14, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/14/95
to
eijk...@jacobi.math.ucla.edu (Victor Eijkhout) wrote:
..

> Ah, but there is a difference between stepping back instead of together
> and moving your centre back. If a rockback is understood as
> `step back right, replace left' then we will probably agree that
> this is not the way hustle is (supposed to be?) done.

`Step back right, replace left' may work for a stationary pattern, but
leaves the woman with no momentum to get to the other end of the slot
in slotted patterns. My previous post was only discussing the physics
of patterns like an open and close basic, where the woman has to move
from one end of the slot to the other. For these types of patterns, I
think that the idea is to start moving ones center forward before
the end of "&" step, instead of letting it float back. The apex of the
womans backward motion may be somewhere between the beginning and end of
the "&" step. But she has to start accelerating forward much earlier
than this in order to dissipate her backward momentum.

> But it is possible for the & step to be back and the subsequent
> 1 or 3, depending on how you count, to go forward. I was watching
> a beginning hustle class the other day, and Patricia Reeves (a longtime
> NY style hustle dancer) does not do a together step, but rather
> a back in 3rd or maybe even 5th position. Her 1 is then definitely
> forward.

This works and can be used to nicely accent the music. But, the
later the backwards motion is reversed, the more POWER it takes
to get going forward in time for the "1". (&1 2 3 count)

---
Ronald H. Nicholson, Jr. r...@engr.sgi.com, r...@netcom.com

Rahul Dhesi

unread,
Aug 15, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/15/95
to
In <40om6v$j...@murrow.corp.sgi.com> Ron Nicholson <r...@sgi.com> writes:

>For these types of patterns, I
>think that the idea is to start moving ones center forward before
>the end of "&" step, instead of letting it float back. The apex of the
>womans backward motion may be somewhere between the beginning and end of
>the "&" step.

What I see is:

As she steps back with her left foot on the 3 count, her body is
leaning forward, and her CG (center of gravity) is slightly ahead of
her left foot.

On the & count she brings her right foot back to both feet are about
side by side. At this point she is leaning forward and is on her
toes, and her CG is above or a little ahead of her toe.

Now she moves, by stepping forward with her left foot on the 1
count. Since she is already leaning forward, she can push with her
right foot and gain momentum quickly.

The force due to change of momentum is primarily exerted aginst the
floor at an angle, not against her partner.

The correction I would make to the quoted text above is that her
forward motion doesn't begin significantly before the & count. But she
is *already leaning forward* when the & count occurs.

The way to reproduce this in slow motion is to face a wall and lean
against it with your hands. Now do a coaster step while still leaning
forward.

So now it's possible to see how an expert dancer could actually step back
(a little) on the & count: She steps back with her foot, but her body
*still leans forward without moving back* and no momentum is lost. She
will need to lean a bit more to compensate.

But when a beginning dancer steps back on the & count, she may be
stepping back *and moving her CG back* on the & count. This is what
causes the jerkiness. In fact such jerkiness is easily caused without
stepping back on the & count -- if she merely moves her body back with
her foot on the & count, thus losing the forward lean.

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 15, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/15/95
to
In article <40om6v$j...@murrow.corp.sgi.com>, Ron Nicholson <r...@sgi.com> says:
>
>eijk...@jacobi.math.ucla.edu (Victor Eijkhout) wrote:
>..
>> But it is possible for the & step to be back and the subsequent
>> 1 or 3, depending on how you count, to go forward. I was watching
>> a beginning hustle class the other day, and Patricia Reeves (a longtime
>> NY style hustle dancer) does not do a together step, but rather
>> a back in 3rd or maybe even 5th position. Her 1 is then definitely
>> forward.
>
>This works and can be used to nicely accent the music. But, the
>later the backwards motion is reversed, the more POWER it takes
>to get going forward in time for the "1". (&1 2 3 count)
>

Actually, it's not just a matter of the timing. When I sat and thought
about this topic for a while, I realized that what my wife and the other
hustle dancers around here do is not REALLY a rock. It is a small back
step on the right on & and then a strong forward walk on the left on 1 -
technically a ball-change, not a rock step. The trick is not to take
the weight back over the right foot.

In fact, consider this - doesn't a slight back step as described above
make the woman LIGHTER going into 1? When she picks up her left foot,
if the right foot is slightly behind her, she will actually fall forward
slightly, whereas if she takes her & in place, she is relying just on the
leverage motion of her foot & ankle and the man's lead. If the goes
slightly back on &, then gravity is working for her as well.

Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 15, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/15/95
to
Rahul Dhesi <dh...@rahul.net> wrote:
> What I see is:
>
> As she steps back with her left foot on the 3 count, her body is
> leaning forward, and her CG (center of gravity) is slightly ahead of
> her left foot.
>
> On the & count she brings her right foot back to both feet are about
> side by side. At this point she is leaning forward and is on her
> toes, and her CG is above or a little ahead of her toe.
>
> Now she moves, by stepping forward with her left foot on the 1
> count. Since she is already leaning forward, she can push with her
> right foot and gain momentum quickly.
..

> her
> forward motion doesn't begin significantly before the & count. But she
> is *already leaning forward* when the & count occurs.

Well, I actually see the same thing you do. However the laws of
physics do not allow one to lean without accelerating, so what I
assume is really happening during the 500 milliseconds between the
the 3 count and the 1 count ("&1 2 3 " @ 120 bpm) is a de-acceleration
of reverse motion and then an acceleration forward, with the "&"
step somewhere around the apex. Plotted as displacement vs. time,
the CG motion would describe a shallow arc, never standing still
except for an instant.

I think a lot of what we see in dance is visual illusion. That's
one of the reasons I started to analyze the physics of this
particular dance movement.

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
In article <DDBFF...@hpcvsnz.cv.hp.com>, mcju...@spk.hp.com (Bart L. McJunkin) says:

>
>Scott Allen (win...@io.com) wrote:
>: Anyway, my question is this - if you maintain a constant connection,
>: 10 or 15 or 20 pounds of pull doesn't seem like very much. How much
>: does the average briefcase or purse weigh?
>
>This is an incredible amount of force! If this doesn't feel heavy to
>you, then we differ greatly on the definition of heavy.

It doesn't feel heavy to me. Of course, I weigh about 260+, and I use
body leads for EVERYthing. My arms aren't flexing to support that force,
so it's really not tiring.

>I'm here to tell you that that is WRONG. The woman is not

>moving her center backward on "&." Why should she rock
>back. The return on "1" from a rock back is likely to make
>her hop in the air.

Who died and made you hustle god?

Where do you get off? I've seen DOZENS of hustle dancers in Texas AND
around the country (especially South Florida, and even some in NYC and
Southern California), and that's the way they do it.

I'm really sick and tired of people telling other people that this or
that is "WRONG". If no one's getting hurt, and both partners are having
fun dancing to the music, it isn't WRONG. It may not be how YOU teach
it, or even a larger group of self-proclaimed experts. That still
doesn't make it "wrong".

For example, I think that for the woman to be doing a coaster step as a
break ending in WCS in such a way that her center goes back on 5 and comes
forward on 6 totally ruins the man's ability to lead the woman into
high-energy moves. But guess what - that's the way it's been in the
Arthur Murray AND Fred Astaire syllabus for YEARS!

I don't like it. I don't teach it. I'll even offer an explanation of
why I don't like it to just about anyone who will listen. But I NEVER
call it WRONG.

>You shouldn't be trying to get extension on the "&."
>That's rodeo swing. Hustle is smooth.

What is rodeo swing? Never heard of it. The dance I described is
called hustle here.

>Hustle is different from WCS. In the Hustle closed basic,
>the man brings her forward while he does the check step. He
>doesn't rock her back like a WCS throwout.

Same song, different verse.

>: We need to teach women to follow their partner, NOT the exact foot placement
>: instructions that this or that instructor says is the "right" way to do it.
>
>What's wrong with an instructor who has enough courage and
>strength of conviction to say "this is the right way to do
>this?" They usually have a good reason.

Here is EXACTLY what is wrong with this. Narrow-minded instructors who
say that this or that way is the RIGHT and ONLY RIGHT way to do it usually
end up producing dancers who can only dance with other people who have
learned by those exact same rules.

I GUARANTEE that Robert Cordoba's rules of WCS are not identical to
Mario Robau Jr.'s or Barry Durand's or etc., etc.

The approach I take teaches dancers to adapt to different styles easily.
The dancer I teach hustle to will be able to adapt to the one you do and
dance comfortably with him/her. The dancer you teach as you described
will end up being an elitist dance snob and be unable to dance hustle
with anyone who has learned in a different style which DOES exist and is
taught in various parts of the country by very reputable instructors.

Skippy Blair asked a great question once:

Q: When two people are dancing together and they have different
styles, whose responsibility is it to adapt to the other,
the man or the woman?
A: Whichever one is aware that there IS a difference and can
make the adjustment.

With the approach I take to teaching the woman, her right foot follows her
right shoulder, which follows her right hand. If the man doesn't give her
extension, she doesn't take it on her own. On the other hand, if the man
gives her extension, she takes it. For her to automatically step forward
ahead of the lead would be considered BACKLEADING!


> Pick a basic footwork and then teach the real rules of WCS:
>
>ie Side Pass:
>
>Man leads on 1 (no other lead is necessary for the Side Pass)
>Be close to your partner on 2
>Stay near the location of your 4 step
>Don't interfere with your partner on the anchor.
>Be ready to move on 1

Different words, but basically the same thing I was saying. It's nice
to end on an agreeable note.

All I ask is for you to open your mind to the possibility that there
may be other people around who do things differently from you, but in
a way that works for them. Is that such a hard concept?

Icono Clast

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
95Aug1...@jacobi.math.ucla.edu> <40om6v$j...@murrow.corp.sgi.com> <40ov96
$4...@bug.rahul.net>

RH}I think a lot of what we see in dance is visual illusion. That's


}one of the reasons I started to analyze the physics of this
}particular dance movement.

Indeed! In other contexts, I've said that as one reason to avoid
taking non-dancers with whom one has an emotional attachment to a
dance. Much of what we do is far more provocative in appearance than
reality. You've pointed out another illusion.
---
* SLMR 2.1a #346 * . . . menage a hustle . . . -- Robinne Gray

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to

>Look at it this way. Do you want to lift an above average briefcase
>(and 10 pounds, that is a laptop with accessories plus a few books :-)
>every 1.5 seconds for a few minutes straight? I'd rather not.

No. But lifting it requires additional force. I wouldn't mind carrying it
for ten minutes walking to my office from the car.

>Ah, but there is a difference between stepping back instead of together
>and moving your centre back. If a rockback is understood as
>`step back right, replace left' then we will probably agree that
>this is not the way hustle is (supposed to be?) done.

>But it is possible for the & step to be back and the subsequent
>1 or 3, depending on how you count, to go forward. I was watching
>a beginning hustle class the other day, and Patricia Reeves (a longtime
>NY style hustle dancer) does not do a together step, but rather
>a back in 3rd or maybe even 5th position. Her 1 is then definitely
>forward.

As I added in a later post, we actually take the right foot back as
the ball of a ball-change. The woman does not ordinarily take her
center back unless the man has deliberately led an explosion or
extension. In fact, the woman putting the right foot slightly
behind her center actually helps give her forward momentum. She's
now got gravity working for her, not just the flex of her ankle.

And we agree completely - 1 is absolutely a (usually big) step
forward.

>Btw, I danced with her and was thoroughly confused. I'm not good
>enough yet that I can keep up with a woman who syncopates the
>hell out of her hustle. I felt just as small as when I first
>ran into WCS syncopations. Probably smaller, because I thought
>I had made some progress since then :-(

What are you doing watching her feet, anyway? Hardly seems like
proper head position to me. Heh. Just keep that old walk-walk-
touch going and you'll be fine.

Victor Eijkhout

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
In article <40t3pg$s...@anarchy.io.com> win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:

> >Look at it this way. Do you want to lift an above average briefcase
> >(and 10 pounds, that is a laptop with accessories plus a few books :-)
> >every 1.5 seconds for a few minutes straight? I'd rather not.
>
> No. But lifting it requires additional force. I wouldn't mind carrying it
> for ten minutes walking to my office from the car.

Eh, in Aristotelian physics you are indeed using force to carry
a briefcase. In Newtonian (which Ron and I were talking about) not.
Force is associated with acceleration and deceleration. In this case,
the change of direction of the follower at the ends of the slot.

Actually, there is an aspect that Ron has not brought up:
hustle motion does have a strong circular component to it,
at least in the basic figures, and since rotating is a change
of the velocity vector, hence acceleration, there is force
that way too. This would probably diminish the force
as calculated by ron for a purely linear change of direction.

Shawne Neeper

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
Ron Nicholson and Scott Allen exchange, in part:

SA>>If the man doesn't
SA>>lead until count "1" and the woman is already coming forward, she's
SA>>BACKLEADING.
>
RN>Just to be clear, there is a difference between West Coast Swing and
RN>Hustle (at least as danced around here). In West Coast, the follower
RN>should never step forward on "1" unless led; in Hustle the woman
RN>should always step forward on "1" unless prevented (&1 2 3 count).
RN>This give Hustle a more ballistic feel than West Coast Swing.
>
The other night, I was dancing Hustle with a friend who just started
beginning Hustle classes (and is learning quickly). He felt that I was
stepping out on "1" too soon. I think he felt that because he's used to
WCS, where the lady would normally wait for a lead to step forward on 1.
I've been taught to step out strongly on 1 unless, as Ron writes, I am
prevented from it. Or is this just my hubris speaking? ;-)

Shawne Neeper To be is to do. - I. Kant
sne...@parker.bio.uci.edu To do is to be. - A. Sartre
Department of Psychobiolgy Do be do be do. - F. Sinatra
U of California, Irvine, CA Yabba dabba do! - F. Flintstone

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
In article <rhnDDA...@netcom.com>, r...@netcom.com (Ron Nicholson) says:
>
>The 30 pound number in the absolute minimum. Less smooth force
>patterns can easily require half a G (half the womans weight!) in force
>to turn her movement direction around. Hopefully it comes from the
>floor and not my wrists, arms, shoulders and back. The ability to
>dance with a light connection is just as important in a fast Hustle as
>it is in a West Coast Swing.

Good. That makes me feel better. My wife and I regular use smooth
force patterns. I find it much more exciting dancing.

Actually, in taking a private with Michael & Amber Cross specifically
on the subject of speed swing (160+ bpm), they said that the connection
actually has to get tighter and shorter. They said that this was compen-
sated for by switching places more rather than the man holding cross-slot.
If the partners switch places, the woman doesn't have to travel as far
and doesn't require as much force in the lead. Also, the man doesn't
have to pre-lead by moving his center back to pull the woman forward. He
leads more with the arm, pulling himself up to her as well as pulling her
towards him.

>If the womans weight is going backward on the "&" step, she has very
>little time to reverse herself and accelerate forward for the next
>step. Although it is possible to do this and be smooth, many women
>when using a rock back on the "&" step, yank their partners back
>with them or end up not moving anywhere on the next (coaster) step.

As I said in a later post, I realized that what we do is not actually
"rock" back on the &, but place the foot slightly back as the "ball" of
a ball-change. In this case, placing the foot slightly behind the
woman's center actually HELPS her move forward.

>Just to be clear, there is a difference between West Coast Swing and

>Hustle (at least as danced around here). In West Coast, the follower

>should never step forward on "1" unless led; in Hustle the woman

>should always step forward on "1" unless prevented (&1 2 3 count).

>This give Hustle a more ballistic feel than West Coast Swing.

I understand. So if you wanted to hit an extension line, that would
be considered "preventing" the woman from coming forward?

>>We need to teach women to follow their partner, NOT the exact foot placement
>>instructions that this or that instructor says is the "right" way to do it.

>Yes. Very important in any partner dance.

I think a lot of people miss this basic concept.

BTW,

THANK YOU for carrying on an intelligent, non-critical conversation on
this subject. You have discussed it in such a way that I am learning
from it without feeling that you are saying that waht a large number
of people in this part (and other parts) of the country do is "wrong".

I'm going to try working with this. I'm not saying I'm going to change,
but I will try it.

Victor Eijkhout

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
In article <1995081618...@parker.bio.uci.edu> Shawne Neeper <sne...@PARKER.BIO.UCI.EDU> writes:

> RN>Just to be clear, there is a difference between West Coast Swing and
> RN>Hustle (at least as danced around here). In West Coast, the follower
> RN>should never step forward on "1" unless led; in Hustle the woman
> RN>should always step forward on "1" unless prevented (&1 2 3 count).
> RN>This give Hustle a more ballistic feel than West Coast Swing.

If you write &123 as 23&1, you can verbalize this as 'step triple-step'.
And swing dancers are used to doing triple-step in place. Well, in
hustle that would reduce your travel to just one step, which is not
all that much.

My current hustle teacher, Jamie Arias, explains it as a 'rubberband
action', which stretches on that triplestep, and leads you
forward on the 1. Or the 3 is his 12&3 way of counting.

> The other night, I was dancing Hustle with a friend who just started
> beginning Hustle classes (and is learning quickly). He felt that I was
> stepping out on "1" too soon. I think he felt that because he's used to
> WCS, where the lady would normally wait for a lead to step forward on 1.
> I've been taught to step out strongly on 1 unless, as Ron writes, I am
> prevented from it. Or is this just my hubris speaking? ;-)

Well, you should really be led into stepping strongly, but yes,
stepping forward on 1 is the thing to do. For as far as I
understand it :-)

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
In article <40ov96$4...@bug.rahul.net>, Rahul Dhesi <dh...@rahul.net> says:
>
>So now it's possible to see how an expert dancer could actually step back
>(a little) on the & count: She steps back with her foot, but her body
>*still leans forward without moving back* and no momentum is lost. She
>will need to lean a bit more to compensate.
>
>But when a beginning dancer steps back on the & count, she may be
>stepping back *and moving her CG back* on the & count. This is what
>causes the jerkiness. In fact such jerkiness is easily caused without
>stepping back on the & count -- if she merely moves her body back with
>her foot on the & count, thus losing the forward lean.

I think I see a solution that answers all of these issues.

One of the things we are very big on in teaching our WCS is that
"&" steps are never FULL weight change steps. In other words,
you don't really stop and rest your CG over an "&" step. The
"&" step is simply a transition to get you from the foot you are
on back to the same foot.

So, in hustle, we all agree that the EMPHASIS is on the strong
forward step on the left foot on 1. I can practically guarantee
you that if you teach beginners to concentrate on the strong "1"
step instead of worrying about the exact foot placement of the "&"
step, you'll get the desired result: the truly novice dancers will,
in all likelihood, take the "&" in place or only very slightly
back. The more experienced dancers who understand how ball-changes
work, may add the slight back break.

I'm going to experiment with this. I've been doing hustle a while,
but I only recently started teaching it, so this discussion has
been great for me.

Once again, let me say how nice it is to have a rational, logical
discussion that allows for the possibilities of variations. You
are very open-minded. Thanks.

Bart L. McJunkin

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
Scott Allen (win...@io.com) wrote:

: I'm really sick and tired of people telling other people that this or


: that is "WRONG". If no one's getting hurt, and both partners are having
: fun dancing to the music, it isn't WRONG. It may not be how YOU teach
: it, or even a larger group of self-proclaimed experts. That still
: doesn't make it "wrong".

We both agree that the number one rule of good dancing is
not hurting your partner. But there's more to good dancing
than that.

<Deleted coaster step description>
: I don't like it. I don't teach it. I'll even offer an explanation of


: why I don't like it to just about anyone who will listen. But I NEVER
: call it WRONG.

: >What's wrong with an instructor who has enough courage and


: >strength of conviction to say "this is the right way to do
: >this?" They usually have a good reason.

: Here is EXACTLY what is wrong with this....

If I see dancing that makes it difficult for a couple to
dance, I will tell them what is WRONG (when they ask me.)
You won't call bad dancing wrong. But, if someone stands up
and says "Thats bad dancing.", you say "You're wrong."
I guess we can't all get along.

: I GUARANTEE that Robert Cordoba's rules of WCS are not identical to


: Mario Robau Jr.'s or Barry Durand's or etc., etc.

I've had group or private instruction with all of them and
almost every one of them has a reason for their "rules." I
don't agree with everything I've heard. But if a teacher
waffles and cannot give me a good reason, my opinion of
their teaching ability drops. Too many of the top teachers
try to avoid controversy by refusing to voice any opinion.
A wishy-washy teacher is not getting the job done:

teach (verb)
1: to cause to know a subject
2: to show how
3: to guide the studies of
4: to make to know the disagreeable consequences of an action
5: to impart the knowledge of

A great way to get your money's worth is to ask the teacher
what you are doing wrong.

: The approach I take teaches dancers to adapt to different styles easily.


: The dancer I teach hustle to will be able to adapt to the one you do and
: dance comfortably with him/her. The dancer you teach as you described
: will end up being an elitist dance snob and be unable to dance hustle
: with anyone who has learned in a different style which DOES exist and is
: taught in various parts of the country by very reputable instructors.

Name a reputable hustle instructor that teaches the follower
to hang back and wait for a lead on 1.

: Skippy Blair asked a great question once:

: Q: When two people are dancing together and they have different
: styles, whose responsibility is it to adapt to the other,
: the man or the woman?
: A: Whichever one is aware that there IS a difference and can
: make the adjustment.

Skippy was asked the adjustment question in Seattle at
Easter Swing. In a social situation, the aware dancer
should adapt. But if that dancer is paying for instruction,
they should be corrected. Then the student and their
partners don't have to do so much adapting. Social dancers
need only hear the first part, but those that teach need to
learn the whole message.

: With the approach I take to teaching the woman, her right foot follows her


: right shoulder, which follows her right hand. If the man doesn't give her
: extension, she doesn't take it on her own. On the other hand, if the man
: gives her extension, she takes it. For her to automatically step forward
: ahead of the lead would be considered BACKLEADING!

In NY slotted hustle, counted &123, stepping forward on 1
isn't backleading.

<Side pass description deleted>
: Different words, but basically the same thing I was saying. It's nice


: to end on an agreeable note.

I'm glad to see that it took two days to compose your reply.
And possibly yourself. :)

: All I ask is for you to open your mind to the possibility that there


: may be other people around who do things differently from you, but in
: a way that works for them. Is that such a hard concept?

We both agree that the number one rule of good dancing is
not hurting your partner. But there's more to good dancing
than that. Different is cool, but wrong is wrong. A
teacher that doesn't have the courage to teach isn't doing
anybody a favor.

From the backwoods of Washington,

Jon Leech

unread,
Aug 16, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/16/95
to
In article <40t1oi$s...@anarchy.io.com>, Scott Allen <win...@io.com> wrote:
>As I said in a later post, I realized that what we do is not actually
>"rock" back on the &, but place the foot slightly back as the "ball" of
>a ball-change. In this case, placing the foot slightly behind the
>woman's center actually HELPS her move forward.

I realize you're talking about hustle, but there's something similar
which seems to be near-universal behavior among beginners in ECS: the lead
(often the follow too, but almost always the lead) will tend to take an
immense back step on the "rock", and plant their entire weight on the left
foot. Of course if the music is at all fast, this makes it virtually
impossible to recover on the right foot in time with the music, and things
break down from there. Even when the instructor repeatedly emphasizes and
demonstrates a small back step with weight on the ball, it takes more than
one session to sink in.

Since this is IMO such a common problem, I wonder if there are any good
teaching approaches out there to helping people work through it?

While on the area of really common beginner problems, another one is in
patterns working from foxtrot/waltz/rumba box steps. When doing a
side-together, there's a tendency to forget to change weight on the
"together", so the lead will do something like

Fwd L "forward"
Swd R "side"
Touch L "together" (oops, no weight change)
Back L "back" (follow tries to avoid stepping on lead :-)
Confusion "side" (but which one, he thinks frantically?)

In waltz one can at least emphasize a mantra of changing weight on every
step, but I'd be interested in other solutions. IMO the ideal solution is to
punt box steps and just start with passing feet, but I suppose that's a bit
radical.

Jon
__@/

Ching Liu

unread,
Aug 17, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/17/95
to
le...@cs.unc.edu (Jon Leech) writes:

> I realize you're talking about hustle, but there's something similar
>which seems to be near-universal behavior among beginners in ECS: the lead
>(often the follow too, but almost always the lead) will tend to take an
>immense back step on the "rock", and plant their entire weight on the left
>foot. Of course if the music is at all fast, this makes it virtually
>impossible to recover on the right foot in time with the music, and things
>break down from there. Even when the instructor repeatedly emphasizes and
>demonstrates a small back step with weight on the ball, it takes more than
>one session to sink in.

> Since this is IMO such a common problem, I wonder if there are any good
>teaching approaches out there to helping people work through it?

One thing I do to have the partners put the proper rocking foot back in
open position, and just keep rock-stepping for a while. It simultaneously
works on the proper tone (getting the rubber band action in the arms),
and keeping the heel up. Once they've gotten used to just the rock-step,
I get them to do basics, paying close attention to the rock-steps. It
works fairly well.

> While on the area of really common beginner problems, another one is in
>patterns working from foxtrot/waltz/rumba box steps. When doing a
>side-together, there's a tendency to forget to change weight on the
>"together", so the lead will do something like

> Fwd L "forward"
> Swd R "side"
> Touch L "together" (oops, no weight change)
> Back L "back" (follow tries to avoid stepping on lead :-)
> Confusion "side" (but which one, he thinks frantically?)

> In waltz one can at least emphasize a mantra of changing weight on every
>step, but I'd be interested in other solutions. IMO the ideal solution is to
>punt box steps and just start with passing feet, but I suppose that's a bit
>radical.

When I'm teaching a closed position dance, I always start with passing
feet. It works on the lead-follow connection and the frame before they
even have to start worrying about footwork, and I'm sure I don't have to
tell you that the lead-follow is more important. Once they're used to
moving together, I'll have them try the basic steps - at first, having
them lift the foot they're not on with each step, then relaxing to a more
normal walking motion.

--
Ching Liu, chin...@ugcs.caltech.edu, http://www.ugcs.caltech.edu/~chingliu/
"To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield" -Tennyson
Check out the Caltech Ballroom Dance Club Web Page!
http://www.ugcs.caltech.edu/~chingliu/Ballroom.html

Jamie Hanrahan, Kernel Mode Systems

unread,
Aug 17, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/17/95
to
In article <40t4ig$s...@anarchy.io.com>, win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:
> One of the things we are very big on in teaching our WCS is that
> "&" steps are never FULL weight change steps. In other words,
> you don't really stop and rest your CG over an "&" step. The
> "&" step is simply a transition to get you from the foot you are
> on back to the same foot.

Hmmm. That certainly isn't consistent with what I thought my private
instructor said. Whenever we work on "grounding" she says that if you
don't do a full weight change (or none) you are partway over one foot
and partway over the other -- which is never where you want to be.

Now it's possible I've misinterpreted her, or you; but my triple steps
(and &34, and similar) work a lot better when I do them (as I
interpret) the way she describes, rather than the way (I think) you
describe.

--- Jamie Hanrahan, Kernel Mode Systems, San Diego CA
Internet: j...@cmkrnl.com (JH645) CompuServe: 74140,2055

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
In article <1995081618...@parker.bio.uci.edu>, Shawne Neeper <sne...@PARKER.BIO.UCI.EDU> says:
>
>Ron Nicholson and Scott Allen exchange, in part:
>
>SA>>If the man doesn't
>SA>>lead until count "1" and the woman is already coming forward, she's
>SA>>BACKLEADING.
>>
>RN>Just to be clear, there is a difference between West Coast Swing and
>RN>Hustle (at least as danced around here). In West Coast, the follower
>RN>should never step forward on "1" unless led; in Hustle the woman
>RN>should always step forward on "1" unless prevented (&1 2 3 count).
>RN>This give Hustle a more ballistic feel than West Coast Swing.
>>
>The other night, I was dancing Hustle with a friend who just started
>beginning Hustle classes (and is learning quickly). He felt that I was
>stepping out on "1" too soon. I think he felt that because he's used to
>WCS, where the lady would normally wait for a lead to step forward on 1.
>I've been taught to step out strongly on 1 unless, as Ron writes, I am
>prevented from it. Or is this just my hubris speaking? ;-)

I have been taught that in ANY partner dance, the woman stepping ahead
of the lead is backleading. Imagine any smooth dance with the woman
stepping before the man's frame moved!

Richard Simpson

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
Ronald H. Nicholson wrote:
> I think a lot of what we see in dance is visual illusion. That's
> one of the reasons I started to analyze the physics of this
> particular dance movement.

I know this is entering the Engineering domain rather than Laws of Physics, and
I have no expertise in the hustle, but what about the effects of *grounding* of
the dancers - surely this adds a *spring and damper* effect, altering the forces
on each partner?.

Richard (Dickkun) Simpson, VA Beach

Scott Allen

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
>In article <40t3pg$s...@anarchy.io.com> win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:
>
>> >Look at it this way. Do you want to lift an above average briefcase
>> >(and 10 pounds, that is a laptop with accessories plus a few books :-)
>> >every 1.5 seconds for a few minutes straight? I'd rather not.
>>
>> No. But lifting it requires additional force. I wouldn't mind carrying it
>> for ten minutes walking to my office from the car.
>
>Eh, in Aristotelian physics you are indeed using force to carry
>a briefcase. In Newtonian (which Ron and I were talking about) not.
>Force is associated with acceleration and deceleration. In this case,
>the change of direction of the follower at the ends of the slot.
>
>Actually, there is an aspect that Ron has not brought up:
>hustle motion does have a strong circular component to it,
>at least in the basic figures, and since rotating is a change
>of the velocity vector, hence acceleration, there is force
>that way too. This would probably diminish the force
>as calculated by ron for a purely linear change of direction.

Geez. I know you're the math expert, but still - you can't carry a briefcase
without closing the grip of your hand to counteract the downward force of
gravity, right? You must apply an equal force, whether there is motion or not,
right? Force over time = work, right? Even if there's no motion, right?
Your own original example was holding it at arm's length without moving, right?
Stop me, I'm on a roll...

Circular component? Your hustle really is different from what we teach here!
Here it's considered a slotted dance, like WCS.

Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
win...@io.com (Scott Allen) wrote:
> >Just to be clear, there is a difference between West Coast Swing and
> >Hustle (at least as danced around here). In West Coast, the follower
> >should never step forward on "1" unless led; in Hustle the woman
> >should always step forward on "1" unless prevented (&1 2 3 count).
> >This give Hustle a more ballistic feel than West Coast Swing.
>
> I understand. So if you wanted to hit an extension line, that would
> be considered "preventing" the woman from coming forward?

Yes, any definite and well communicated lead counts.

As an example of a (unless) lead, let me use a mans free spin. In WCS,
if I release a woman's hand without any forward pressure or motion and
do a free spin I would expect her to anchor in place and to be on the
same side of the slot as I left her. (Actually, to avoid unexpected
collisions, I would check to make sure the woman isn't the kind who
coasters instead of anchors before I try a free spin.) Anchoring in
place and making funny faces over my attempted spinning is acceptable.

I hustle, I would do a free spin slightly off the center of the slot,
and afterwards expect to find the woman across the slot or rotating
the slot around me even if I didn't lead her hand forward beforehand.
Very disconcerting to find she had stopped to watch me spin (read
wobble) and I have to go an extra 1/2 wobble (spin) to find her.

*** Not to lead is really to lead, but ya have to speak the same
kinesthetic language.

Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
j...@cmkrnl.com (Jamie Hanrahan, Kernel Mode Systems) wrote:
>
> In article <40t4ig$s...@anarchy.io.com>, win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:
> > One of the things we are very big on in teaching our WCS is that
> > "&" steps are never FULL weight change steps. In other words,
> > you don't really stop and rest your CG over an "&" step. The
> > "&" step is simply a transition to get you from the foot you are
> > on back to the same foot.
>
> Hmmm. That certainly isn't consistent with what I thought my private
> instructor said. Whenever we work on "grounding" she says that if you
> don't do a full weight change (or none) you are partway over one foot
> and partway over the other -- which is never where you want to be.

Oh good. More physics!

You can put ALL your weight on one foot for a short period of time
without having your CG directly over that foot. Try it.

- Stand completely on your left foot.

- Put the ball of your right foot on the floor about 6 inches back
without weight.

- Press into your right foot hard enough to pick your left foot
completely off the floor and slip forward about an inch without
bobbing your head or body up and down.

Congratulations. You have just done a "ball change" with complete
weight change (or you wouldn't have been able to pick up your left
foot without bobbing down and up) but without your weight being over
your foot (because your right foot was behind you and you moved
forward.)

This is completely within the laws of Newtonian physics. The only
limitation is that the time your weight can be on the ball of you
right foot is limited by knee and ankle flex, since your body will
accelerate away from it. But if the music is fast enough, then
the "ball change" will happen within the time of a comfortable
amount of knee and ankle flex and body motion. This is why certain
dances only feel comfortable at certain tempos.

And this is a problem with teaching dance. Where your weight is
and where your center of mass is can be different when changing
your direction of motion (accelerating). Try to explain that to
a dance newbe.

Icono Clast

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
c...@anarchy.io.com>

In article <40t4ig$s...@anarchy.io.com>, win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:
> One of the things we are very big on in teaching our WCS is that
> "&" steps are never FULL weight change steps. In other words,
> you don't really stop and rest your CG over an "&" step. The
> "&" step is simply a transition to get you from the foot you are
> on back to the same foot.

JHKM}Hmmm. That certainly isn't consistent with what I thought my private


}instructor said. Whenever we work on "grounding" she says that if you
}don't do a full weight change (or none) you are partway over one foot
}and partway over the other -- which is never where you want to be.

I agree with you, Jamie. I tell beginners "you can't fake it" meaning
a TriPleStep is a TriPleSTEP!
On the other hand, I occasionally fake it. Sometimes I'm
dancing with someone I'd rather not, or the music doesn't grab me, or
m'legs are saying: "Why are you making us do this? We wanna go t'bed!"
---
* SLMR 2.1a #346 * Swing is a state of mind -- Victor Eijkhout

Bart L. McJunkin

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
Icono Clast (icono...@lcabin.com) wrote:
: c...@anarchy.io.com>

I agree Jamie. There are a lot of simple syncopations that
you cannot do unless you take full weight on an "&" step.
Such as "triple-kick" on an anchor:

5 R hook step
& Left replace
6 R kick

(This is a Robert Cordoba owned syncopation and you must
forget it after reading.)

Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
win...@io.com (Scott Allen) wrote:
> I have been taught that in ANY partner dance, the woman stepping ahead
> of the lead is backleading. Imagine any smooth dance with the woman
> stepping before the man's frame moved!

Not quite true. In many dances there is a lead moment and a
follow thru moment. Imagine a free spin. You may start your
partner turning. But she doesn't stop halfway around when you
release her hand or expect you to run around her so that she
can follow your frame. The language of a free spin is that the
leader can start it and the follower is expected to continue for
a bit.

In hustle, the language is that the lead can be at times other than
the "1" step (&1 2 3 count) and that the lady is expected to follow
thru with a coaster forward on the "1".

Victor Eijkhout

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
In article <4119ol$k...@anarchy.io.com> win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:

> Circular component? Your hustle really is different from what we teach here!
> Here it's considered a slotted dance, like WCS.

The woman moves in a slot. The guy, of necessity, make more of an ellipse.

Edbj

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
In article <4119ol$k...@anarchy.io.com>, win...@io.com (Scott Allen)
writes:

>Circular component? Your hustle really is different from what we teach
here!
>Here it's considered a slotted dance, like WCS.

I don't know where "here" is, but here in the wild west (So Calif), it's a
"rotating slot" as opposed to WCS which is a stationary slot.

Edbj

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
In article <1995Aug17.210957.5996@cmkrnl>, j...@cmkrnl.com (Jamie Hanrahan,
Kernel Mode Systems) writes:

>In article <40t4ig$s...@anarchy.io.com>, win...@io.com (Scott Allen)
writes:


>> One of the things we are very big on in teaching our WCS is that
>> "&" steps are never FULL weight change steps. In other words,
>> you don't really stop and rest your CG over an "&" step. The
>> "&" step is simply a transition to get you from the foot you are
>> on back to the same foot.
>

>Hmmm. That certainly isn't consistent with what I thought my private
>instructor said. Whenever we work on "grounding" she says that if you
>don't do a full weight change (or none) you are partway over one foot
>and partway over the other -- which is never where you want to be.
>

>Now it's possible I've misinterpreted her, or you; but my triple steps
>(and &34, and similar) work a lot better when I do them (as I
>interpret) the way she describes, rather than the way (I think) you
>describe.

Perhaps you're both correct? On the triple step you don't really stop and
rest on the &; however, there is a full, albeit brief, change in weight to
the opposite foot. This holds true for a true triple step, but, not for a
triple that's performed as a tap step.

Ron Nicholson

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
win...@io.com (Scott Allen) wrote:
> Circular component? Your hustle really is different from what we teach here!
> Here it's considered a slotted dance, like WCS.

Depends on what part of the country you're from and how crowded
the floor is. Hustle can be danced strictly slotted (a la WCS),
in a rotating slot, or as a traveling dance. A lot of hustle
figures work out well when danced in a triangle, e.g. 120 degree
turn at each end of the slot instead of 180 degrees. For
travelling, I used alternating forward and back grapevines and
free spins with an overturned basic exit.

And just like WCS, it can be danced very smooooothly, or with
a lot of snap, acceleration and posing (vogue).

Ching Liu

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
win...@io.com (Scott Allen) writes:

> Geez. I know you're the math expert, but still - you can't carry a
> briefcase without closing the grip of your hand to counteract the
> downward force of gravity, right? You must apply an equal force,
> whether there is motion or not, right? Force over time = work,
> right? Even if there's no motion, right? Your own original example
> was holding it at arm's length without moving, right? Stop me, I'm
> on a roll...

Well, it's been a while since my last classical physics class, but I
vaguely remember work being defined as distance * force, or something
to that effect. What I'm sure about is this: if there's no motion,
then there's no work done. It's not science's fault that the human
body needs to expend energy to stay in one place, when a table doesn't.

> Circular component? Your hustle really is different from what we
> teach here! Here it's considered a slotted dance, like WCS.

I was talking with Richard Orosco a couple weeks back (he started dancing
hustle a long time ago, and is a former Latin Amateur champion of some sort),
and he said that hustle used to be circular, but that nowadays it's been
modified into a slot dance.

Mark Anthony Balzer

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
Shawne Neeper <sne...@PARKER.BIO.UCI.EDU> writes:
>The other night, I was dancing Hustle with a friend who just started
>beginning Hustle classes (and is learning quickly). He felt that I was
>stepping out on "1" too soon. I think he felt that because he's used to
>WCS, where the lady would normally wait for a lead to step forward on 1.
>I've been taught to step out strongly on 1 unless, as Ron writes, I am
>prevented from it. Or is this just my hubris speaking? ;-)

There is a good section on Hustle dancing in a file on the Dancer's Archive
which answers your question thoroughly. It can be found at:

ftp://ftp.std.com/ftp/nonprofits/dance/topics/lead-follow-discussion.txt

Mark

Cheri Burk

unread,
Aug 18, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/18/95
to
In article <410m4c$f...@murrow.corp.sgi.com>, Ron Nicholson <r...@sgi.com> writes:
(snip)

> As an example of a (unless) lead, let me use a mans free spin. In WCS,
> if I release a woman's hand without any forward pressure or motion and
> do a free spin I would expect her to anchor in place and to be on the
> same side of the slot as I left her. (Actually, to avoid unexpected
> collisions, I would check to make sure the woman isn't the kind who
> coasters instead of anchors before I try a free spin.) Anchoring in
> place and making funny faces over my attempted spinning is acceptable.
>
(snip)

> ---
> Ronald H. Nicholson, Jr. r...@engr.sgi.com, r...@netcom.com
> #include <canonical.disclaimer> // I speak only for myself, etc.
>

Why do coasters interfere with your free spins? My partner does free
spins regularly and I do coasters as my basic break ending. Okay, so
I don't do them perfect but I do try! Anyway, with a coaster I stay
where my 4 puts me (5& are back, 6 is even with where 4 was). What's
the problem?

Cheri
My opinions are my own and do not necessarily reflect the
opinions of my employer or any one else (sigh!)


Victor Eijkhout

unread,
Aug 19, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/19/95
to
In article <DDJ5Jt.2x1@da_vinci.ecte.uswc.uswest.com> cburk@ramoth1265612 (Cheri Burk) writes:

> Why do coasters interfere with your free spins? My partner does free
> spins regularly and I do coasters as my basic break ending.

Apparently you know how to do them right. The naive interpretation of
a coast propels you forward, so if you would coast on 5&6 and
your partner would do a spin on 5&6 *and* 78, then you would
run into him on 7, where a better anchor would simply keep you
in place, waiting for a lead.

This topic comes up every with a certain regularity. If you know
that you are not supposed to come forward unless led, then you
are perfectly free to do a coaster step. However, in particular
ballroom studios are likely to teach you a coaster step that
will make you come charging into your partner.

Icono Clast

unread,
Aug 19, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/19/95
to
<95081803...@lcabin.com>

BLM}I agree Jamie. There are a lot of simple syncopations that


}you cannot do unless you take full weight on an "&" step.
}Such as "triple-kick" on an anchor:

BLM}5 R hook step


}& Left replace
}6 R kick

BLM}(This is a Robert Cordoba owned syncopation and you must
}forget it after reading.)

Uh, I don't think so, Bart.
I was taught the hook almost immediately that I learned a
side-by-side triple and that was a _very_ long time ago, probably
before either of the Cordoba brothers was born.
However, I don't do the kick so I'll give 'im dat.

I'm occasionally conscious of doing the hook so assume that I do it
with some regularity. I occasionally do it with a step on the Left
heel on &. Kick's a good idea. Methinks I'll try it.
---
* SLMR 2.1a #346 * 1 person's theology is another's hilarity -- after L.Long

Jamie Hanrahan, Kernel Mode Systems

unread,
Aug 19, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/19/95
to
In article <412dv5$7...@newsbf02.news.aol.com>, ed...@aol.com (Edbj) writes:
> In article <4119ol$k...@anarchy.io.com>, win...@io.com (Scott Allen)

> writes:
>
>>Circular component? Your hustle really is different from what we teach
> here!
>>Here it's considered a slotted dance, like WCS.
>
> I don't know where "here" is, but here in the wild west (So Calif), it's a
> "rotating slot" as opposed to WCS which is a stationary slot.

Not sure what you mean by this. The way Michael Kiehm teaches it, the
slot doesn't "rotate", in the sense that if we start out in a
north-south slot, that's the way we stay. Folks who allow the slot to
"rotate" are viewed as being sloppy.

Edbj

unread,
Aug 19, 1995, 3:00:00 AM8/19/95
to
In article <1995Aug19.012510.6001@cmkrnl>, j...@cmkrnl.com (Jamie Hanrahan,
Kernel Mode Systems) writes:

>>>Circular component? Your hustle really is different from what we teach
>> here!
>>>Here it's considered a slotted dance, like WCS.
>>
>> I don't know where "here" is, but here in the wild west (So Calif),
it's a
>> "rotating slot" as opposed to WCS which is a stationary slot.
>
>Not sure what you mean by this. The way Michael Ki