Discussion in 'Just Dance' started by granrey, Aug 10, 2017.

  1. granrey

    granrey Sonero

    I have couple questions on why teachers do certain things. Especially on new students:
    1) why you have to tell your opinions on the origins fo salsa, bachata etc?
    I have seen teachers giving their opinions at beginning of the first class. Always sounding very confident on their statement even though the information we know is not certain. Some say is from the USA, some say is from Cuba, etc. Why is timportant to transfer your origin beleives? For intance a teacher said the other day that bachata motion comes from an slave dancing while having a metal chain in one the legs.

    2) why teach stuff that students likely will never use? Some steps also seem complex. Some frienda in classes have quit because of it. I have told them : "dont worry, you will never see that in the dance floor"

    3) why teach mid to complex combos when students still dont know most of the basic turns?
  2. Smejmoon

    Smejmoon El Sabroso de Conguero

    Why, why why?! Teaching is art unto itself, for its own needs and wants.
  3. Jag75

    Jag75 Shine Officer

    You'll need to be more specific about "stuff they will never use". Says who? You? Describe what you're talking about.

    Some exercises and drills you don't explicitly "use" but serve as good movement exercises and help the students become better dancers.

    You know what bugs me? Students who think they know better (they don't) telling other students that what they are learning they will "never use".

    I agree about the complex patterns though - mid patterns are ok because they illustrate how foundational moves fit together.
  4. Jag75

    Jag75 Shine Officer

    Respect your instructor. Telling other students the instructor is somehow wasting their time is really not cool. SMH.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2017
  5. wol

    wol Sonero

    1. To peak the students interest in historical/cultural aspects of a dance?
    Otherwise I would be still thinking, that salsa is hot spanish dance, danced by matadors between bull fights ... :D
    2. To give a perspective?
    I remember after a few lessons in bachata, where I decided, that slide is completelly impossible to lead or follow and I will never use it on the dance floor ...
    3. Because trying moves which are a bit above my abilities will make me train harder? (unless student is a quiter)
    Then again - there are still few combos, which were tought in a salsa lessons, which I still can not do almost 4 years later :D That was not very good idea IMHO :) That was one of the most miserable dance lessons I can remember. But I tried to do them several times during these years, always failed, but I am pretty sure just trying to do them gave me quite a bit of training ... Which remainds me - I have to try them again, its been a while ... :D :D :D

    But teaching is so tricky, there is no point criticizing different teachers and approaches. Every student needs slightly different approach. I learned from all my teachers. IMHO, key is to be smart and change the teachers, when you realize, you learned all the teacher can offer. I am sure there are teachers, which can teach everyting (starting from beginner to advanced), but they are usually not available in small scenes ...
  6. terence

    terence Maestro 'Descarga' Cachao

    Actually it is not. IF you learn your craft taught by competant teachers ( seek them out .they are there )..

    The experienced teacher who works with beginners, has a golden rule... SIMPLICITY
    Marcos and elanimal like this.
  7. vit

    vit El Sabroso de Conguero

    That's the problem ... people don't like simple things anymore, or are not prepared to pay for them ... they want complicated ...
  8. terence

    terence Maestro 'Descarga' Cachao

    Funny, I've never had that problem with my students. And, don't say I'm lucky Luck plays no part .Lessons need to be, among the obvious, to be entertaining
    elanimal likes this.
  9. vit

    vit El Sabroso de Conguero

    You have, just you don't know, as they whether never come to you or they leave after one or two lessons ... like one of SF members several years ago you mentioned to me once ...
    It's actually interesting to observe how every dance teacher has specific profile of students that are, to some extent, similar to him in various things ...
  10. Offbeat

    Offbeat Maestro 'Fania' Pacheco

    Interesting to observe how the most famous names from Eddie Torres stable have complete different styles and none like him. Just saying :)
    MAMBO_CEC likes this.
  11. Smejmoon

    Smejmoon El Sabroso de Conguero

    That they were already accomplished dancers before they joined his performance team?
  12. vit

    vit El Sabroso de Conguero

    I'm not saying that students are clones of the teacher and it was about usual people attending social dancing classes
    But even among ET's students, I don't believe anyone is similar to Terry for example

    For instance, if you have 30 and 60 year old teacher, first one will have younger students on average
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  13. vit

    vit El Sabroso de Conguero

    So we should actually support bad instructors by not telling other people that they are wasting their time, money and in return teach them bad habits ? Plus, on the long run, people we know are mostly from local venue, so we have to dance with them ;)
    Marcos likes this.
  14. Jag75

    Jag75 Shine Officer

    If you don't like an instructor, don't learn from them. Also - most students, especially beginner students, aren't good judges of what makes a good instructor, and even worse judges of what is and isn't a waste of time.
    Offbeat likes this.
  15. granrey

    granrey Sonero

    Some truths are not cool but I in many cases I prefer to tell the truth to a friend rather than being cool. I have met many friends that while they love salsa they have quit.

    I've been learning salsa for almost 5 years now. But I have been dancing merengue, bachata and seeing salsa being danced for over 30 years. So, while I'm not an expert in salsa, I can definitely see if a move is common in the dance floor or not.

    As a teacher, have you ever wondered why good talented students with high interest, and several courses (in which they were very good) simply quit or are still very shy in dancing? Of course, this is ignoring the many other reasons to quit a hobby that have nothing to do with the hobby itsel.

    I will give my opinion.

    Teachers feel "entitled" to say Salsa is whatever they think it is (from Cuba, USA, on1, on2, LA, etc) and spread their believes and techniques . Many students finish courses thinking Salsa is what they were taught. Teachers tend also to critic other teachers too for having contradictory believes.

    I know a teacher that tell students that they must keep doing different moves to avoid the women getting bored....... lol

    Let's assume for a bit, Salsa is an universal language and all schools teach the same language and it has 0% choreography. For instance, all schools in your city teach salsa On1 and all schools teach the same moves with proper leads for every move.

    Students from different schools meet in the dance floor. It does not take long for these students to realize that it is a bit of challenge with students from other schools but they dance "ok" with students from the same school and even ""better" with classmates and "great" with steady dance partners. However, the mid to complex level combos tend to work only with classmates or dance partners, if they still remember it (this is a big "if", if time has gone by).

    Students then realize that not only that there are more Salsa languages but Salsa On1 has "dialects" and there is some degree of choreography as well and some words (moves, steps) that even though are complex are rarely used or known and you need the other person to know these words for them to understand them.

    IMO teachers would do better telling salsa as it is. It's a dance with a complex origin and evolution that has generated a range of styles like blah, blah, blah that while related, these styles not necessarily work with each other and this class will be xxxxxx. Later they should proceed to teach basic moves with leads that are very common among styles. Then teach students variations and to "combine" these simple moves creating a tool box to avoid monotomy and enjoy dancing. Then they could teach some mid to complex level combos.
    Marcos likes this.
  16. Sabrosura

    Sabrosura Maestro 'Sonero' Lavoe

    Nope, not really. Frankie, for instance, had just started dancing when he started going to Eddie´s classes. And his style back then was very different than the one he started developing after he left Eddie´s school and started dancing/teaching on his own.

    Marisha likes this.
  17. vit

    vit El Sabroso de Conguero

    Well, that is true, but things are not always to be generalized that way

    For instance in context of OP questions 2 and 3: students are obviously aware that things are too complex for them. And having in mind that most people think they are better dancers than they really are, it means things are actually way too complex for them. So why a dance teacher don't see that ? Well, maybe people are on the class that is too high for their current skill level. So is it actually student's fault ? Maybe yes, maybe no - having in mind that people actually can't estimate well which level is appropriate for them, it should be a teachers job to tell them again ... but he isn't telling them that, because he is afraid that they will go to other school where they can attend super-advanced level after 3 months of dancing etc ... and he is teaching them complicated stuff because he doesn't want boring them with basic things, again in order to keep them on the class

    In my experience from classes I attended, big amount of patterns taught was useless. Among my teachers, percentage of useful moves / patterns was from 5% to say 60%, depending on the instructor. How do I know that? Very simple - I filmed my salsa teachers dancing socially back then when there were not much youtube clips available. And it was a percentage of patterns they actually used in their social dancing with more advanced dancers or other instructors compared to what they taught on the classes

    It's not any different than inventing 1000 useless gatgets to put in the cars / phones / televisions / washing machines / fridges / whatever people buy, to get people interested in buying that particular thing

    In any case, even if people don't know much about dancing and can't judge the teacher, they are well aware if they are advancing in any way or not. And if they are not advancing, then they are obviously wasting their time. So one can judge is it a waste of time or not without any dance knowledge. Just like you don't have to know how gadgets in your car work to be aware are they of any use for you or not
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  18. vit

    vit El Sabroso de Conguero

    Actually, taking away acrobatics and other competitive stuff, as it was a competition, looks pretty much the same as now

    My point in that post however wasn't about dancing styles, but other things like age, type of character, liking complicated or simple tings in general etc ...
  19. Jag75

    Jag75 Shine Officer

    Every instructor is going to have his or her opinion on the origin of the dance. Who's to say they are wrong? Even historians disagree upon its origins.

    It's important for students to get some historical context and for many students it adds a bit of depth to the dance. No matter who the instructor is or how good, there are always people who don't stick around for whatever reason. Some think it moves too fast, others too slow.

    Again, recommend people broaden their instructor base, but don't go around telling other students what they are being taught is a "waste of time". They may learn differently than you, the methods may benefit them better than they benefit you.

    The only thing I can agree with are instructors who teach long complex patterns to students who are lower level, but everything else, including shines patterns, are fine.

    I had a similar attitude after dancing salsa for 5 years that you have, and my attitude now is 180 degrees from what it was then, almost 7 years ago.

    Teach for a while if you feel others are not doing it well, and see for yourself the complexities involved. Then if you still feel the same way, then complain.
  20. Jag75

    Jag75 Shine Officer

    Also the title - "Teachers....lol". Become an instructor for a while, then get back to us.
    LarsM likes this.

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