Why I Teach Body Movement First

Kiz Talks, July 31, 2014

In my last several months traveling around the United States to teach kizomba, for the most part I’ve had the freedom to choose what and how I teach. So, I’ve been championing what some find an unconventional approach: body movement first.

In many dances, we begin immediately with steps. Occasionally, perhaps, with partnering hold and then steps. I often hear the rationale “we need to get people on the floor dancing as quickly as possible.”

That certainly makes sense. Yet I don’t think that the additional investment in body movement of an hour, or 30 minutes at the least, delays that social enjoyment too prohibitively. And the pay-off is dramatic!

Sometimes people equate body movement with styling, in particular with ladies’ stying. I made a video series on that topic, but realized the more I taught how much everyone needs a great movement foundation. Styling may be something to layer on when you reach a higher level, but it’s essential to have the mechanics of our movement figured out, regardless of gender or personal style.
Over and over in my interview web series, teachers of kizomba in the USA have described the importance of a “feeling” and “connection” in kizomba. I believe that starts with great body movement.

So, tomorrow I will share with you the highlights I’ve been sharing with my students the last few months. My beginners’ simple four or five moves have been a delight on the social floor, and improver/intermediate students repeatedly tell me how much understanding the essentials of body movement has radically improved their mastery of their existing vocabulary. Don’t miss it: “How to Transform Your Kizomba Movement.”