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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Don't think so much!

Teaching adults has its own challenges, both physical and mental. Lately, I've been finding myself saying, "Don't think, just do!" a lot. And this goes for all levels of students, not just the beginners.

Watch the teeny tinies in your local studio when you have a chance. Of course you'll squee with joy when you see them in their little tutus running around like puppies but notice how easily they follow each other. The teacher will often put the best students in the front of the room so the others can watch and follow - key word there: follow. Little kids simply do what they see others doing. If a couple of girls are running in a circle, they join in too.

They don't do what adults do which is to intellectualize. Adults question everything - which is fine but often they want to know the answer before they even try the movement. Sometimes the step or combination reveals itself when you do it and you can't know how it will work until you try it with the music, which is why it's so important to mark combinations accurately.

Believe me, I love answering questions. After all, that's why I'm in the front of the room - LOL!! Seriously, though, I welcome questions from students because their issues are often on-going and give me insight to the way they learn. Everyone learns in a different way and the best teachers offer a multitude of ways in.

But - big BUT here - sometimes you just have to let go and do it. Try the step, try the combination, watch how others do it, watch how I do it - and imitate it. Stand in the back and act like a kid would: move your arms they way I do, move your legs and hips and head the way another student does it- and just get the movement into your own body. Do it a few times and then if you have problems, we'll tackle them. But don't anticipate issues before they arise.

Don't think so much!

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