United Steppers Instructional Methods

 

The "United Steppers" instructional methods focus on teaching the students to dance and feel the music, using the 4-count number system to introduce the foundation of the dance called the "Basic walk."


Ballroom has 3 levels on a number sytem.


1-11 Beginner Level


This is the starting point and the foundation for everyone learning how to Detroit club style ballroom.


FEMALE

Women will learn how to do the "BASIC WALK" on the female side, which is simply starting the "BASIC WALK" on the right foot while moving to the beat of the music.


MALE

Men will learn how to do the "BASIC WALK" on the male. The male side starts on the right foot, and the female side starts on the right. Men must be able to understand the timing of the dance and before moving to the next step.



12-25 Intermediate Level


This is the most critical point where the major elements of the dance will be learned.


FEMALE

Women will learn how to execute the following elements while listening and feeling the music with a focus on timing and control.


MALE

Men will learn how to execute basic turns. Additionally, the following key elements will be learned with a focus on listening and feeling the music.



23-up Advance Level


This is the final phase where dancing with a partner is geared towards creativity.  At this point developing a ”style of your own“ will be encouraged and enhanced.

 

MALE / FEMALE

Students will be paired together learning to lead and follow. Emphasis will be placed on combinations, timing, and the flow of the dance in relationship to the music. The woman’s primary role is to follow and maintain the timing, while the man’s primary role is to lead the woman through the various turns and spins to create combinations. Instructors will be encouraging and enhancing student’s confidence through dancing with a partner at this level.


FLOOR ETIQUETTE 

Students learn how to approach and depart the dance floor, the importance of maintaining lane control, and to respect other couples space when on the dance floor.

 

STATEMENT OF COMMITMENT  

Learning this dance is a process that requires commitment from both the instructor and the student. A student can expect that each instructor is dedicated and devoted to making sure each student advances through each phase according to the student's ability and commitment level. The Instructors expect consistent class session attendance and participation, regular practice in between class sessions, and to be open-minded and comfortable with the knowledge and experience from the instructor and assistants. It is important that both the instructor and student work to maintain integrity of the dance throughout the learning process. No student will be ”passed along“ through the phases without demonstrating a reasonable amount of execution in the key elements of each phase. As every student is an individual, not every student will advance at the same pace, it is the commitment of the instructors working with the student to determine when the student is ready for advancement. Most importantly, everyone must be willing to commit to having fun, meeting new people, and sharing lots of laughter with this healthy workout dance form to experience the joy of ”The True Art of Steppin.“

 


MUSIC 

”Ballroom Music“ is any musical choice that has what is called ”Ballroom Beat“ The music is a wide variety of musical rhythms which can include everything from today’s R & B artists Gerald Levert, Janet Jackson and Beyonce, to contemporary jazz favorites Marion Meadows, Jeff Bradshaw and Kenny G, and of course the classic sounds of yesterday’s Whispers, Stylistics, and The Dramatics… better known as ”dusties!“.

 

 

ADVICE WHILE LEARNING 


  • Dance with confidence
  • Don't worry about what others are doing on the dance floor
  • Females - don't try to anticipate what your partner is going to do next, always follow
  • Males - don't allow your dance to become predictable, be creative
  • Males/Females - always feel your music and practice every chance you get
  • Males - become fluent in both hands, whatever you learn with the right, learn it with your left
  • Females - you are the constant beat, stay on that beat throughout the dance
  • Males - remember you are the lead in the dance from start to finish
  • Males/Females - enjoy your music, your partner and this beautiful dance
  • Stay in your lane
  • Believe in your instructor's knowledge and experience
  • HAVE FUN, we do cause "WE Love The Dance!

Dapper men in black twirl their graceful partners. The shuffling of their feet on the gymnasium floor makes an old soft shoe sound as they engage in a pas de deux, Detroit ballroom style.

They half-turn, spin left and right, hesitate, double cross, calypso, kick curl and shuffle back.


The elegance of it all brings to mind a time when dancing always meant that hands touched and arms circled waists, that men led and women followed.



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