Friday, April 25, 2014

Adventures in ballroom

I miss dancing as much as skating (I do miss skating, but it just isn't working to be doing it anymore), but didn’t want to do the ballet classes again. The adult classes don’t seem to go anywhere, and I’m a bit tired of hanging out with kids (part of the reason I’ve grown slightly less fond of skating- the other is that I was always getting hurt.)

I decided that I would try ballroom.

Um, how did I manage to find an activity that costs more than skating?  The group classes are somewhat reasonable: 50 dollars a month for 45 minute classes. I paid $45 a month for 30 minute skating classes.  But the privates- OMG! It is $85 for a 45 minute lesson.

I’m not sure if my husband will social dance with me (he tells me if I really like it, he’ll give it another try) so competition dancing seems to be where I’m going with this. I would need private lessons.  BUT OH MY GOSH! I thought skating was too expensive. I’m a bit worried this isn’t going to last too long…

Anyhow- my only previous experience with ballroom was through the community college. Kevin’s friend wanted a group of us to sign up for it, so Kevin and I did. It wasn’t a great experience. The class was huge, so there was no personal attention. The music was AWFUL (how many times can you listen to Mack the Knife in a single day? And then again and again every class of the session).  And our dancing wasn’t that great.

This time, I decided to try class at a studio closer to my house. They do a free 45-minute private lesson, so I did that yesterday. I met with the instructor and we did basic steps for Foxtrot, Tango, Quickstep, Cha-Cha, Rhumba, East Coast Swing, and Samba.  Samba is out- that bounce is HARD! (He only showed me that because I said Samba and Quickstep are my favorite dances to watch. They don’t teach either of those in their group classes.)

From that little intro, I realized 1) If dancing with someone who is leading me well, I know these basic steps pretty well, but not much else. And 2) Rhumba is totally different than I remember it being in the community college class. There I just remember it being a disaster…  I also had never done tango before and it was fun- I like the little lungey moves.

Also, the closed hold was way easier to do in ballroom than ice dance. Unlike the number of times I stabbed Carson with a toe pick, I never kicked the instructor

So, I had hoped this lesson would let me pick between the Ballroom and Rhythm classes, but I couldn’t decide which I liked best, so I decided to do both for the first month. Here’s the awful part: Group lessons are at 9:00 PM!!! I’m usually in bed by then. Uggh… but I’d really like to try it, and not through Kirkwood, so I figure I’m just going to have to stay up late. It’s like when synchro got their ice time changed to super late. It was worth it though.

So starting Monday I have ballroom (Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot) and Wednesday Rhythm (Rhumba, Cha-Cha, Swing) classes for the month of May.

I bought a pair of dance shoes, because while they say you can just wear any dress shoes and don’t need specialty ones, well, I have exactly ZERO appropriate shoes in my house. I own a single pair of heels and they have no backs.  They say they take a week to get in, so hopefully I’ll have them for at least half the classes. 

I’m excited to see where I go with this.


T. Sedai said...

Sounds like fun! Expensive, but fun. I hope it works out where you can have a regular sport/hobby that you enjoy and works for your schedule.

alejeather said...

Hope this new endeavor brings you much joy! I didn't realize ballroom lessons were so expensive. Does studio time cost as much as ice time?

I took an Argentine tango group class at my school when I was in college. It was not terribly productive. Hope you find the studio group classes meet your needs, and if your husband joins you on the dance floor, that you enjoy dancing together :)