Warming Up

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At the start of most of our rehearsals Betty runs warmups. Usually, she runs us through our vocabulary of moves in combinations to at least three songs, increasing in tempo until we end with psycho surf — and a lot of shimmying. Sometimes we call this “Death By Shimmy”, sometimes “Gettin’ Sweaty with Betty”.

Occasionally we play a game instead. I think it was originally called “I went to summer camp and I learned…” but we call it “I went to Minsky’s…” or just “Minsky’s”. Here’s how it works:

The dancers stand in a circle. The first one demonstrates a move. Everyone does it with her. Then the second one does a different move. Then everyone does the first move and then the second move. Then the third dancer shows a move, then everyone does the first, second, and third. Et cetera, et cetera.

We generally do this for 3 songs of differening tempo, keeping the chain going the whole time. We repeat each move 4 times (or 8, depending), switching sides as necessary.

Not only it is fun and a nice change of pace, it’s challenging too — trying to keep all the moves straight and not completely exhaust yourself. (I’ll give you a hint, don’t pick a spin early on in the cycle…) Also, doing the same dance move to different music is a useful exercise. Things change and evolve when we switch songs. We learn a lot from one another as we search our different dance backgrounds for interesting moves.

Give it a try! You might be inspired!

Published in: on 2 February 2012 at 2:37 pm  Leave a Comment  

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