Dance Related TipsTechnique and Skill

Ballroom dance frame: how to stand

I’m going to do a few posts on the importance of frame, and how to stand properly.  I have gone into some specifics of frame in other posts (see the one about the woman’s right shoulder), but not in the more basic aspects of how to stand.

First, stand up with your feet comfortably apart.  If comfortable for you is feet right next to each other, that’s fine; or if you want them several inches apart, that’s fine too.

Now I want you to really focus in on your anatomy.

Make sure that all parts of your feet are touching the floor equally.  You should feel the same pressure from the bottom of your heel, the bottom of the ball of your foot, and the bottom of the side.  Learning to focus in on the parts of your anatomy at this level really helps your dancing ability.

Next, make sure that your knees are placed squarely above your ankles.  To build the best stability, nothing can be leaning.  You also want your knees straight, but not locked.

Now make sure your hips are squarely positioned above your knees and your ankles.  Once you have the base correct, move on to the rest of your core.

Put your ribcage directly above your hips, and your shoulders squarely above your ribcage.  Your head should be directly above your shoulders … which should result in a very straight frame.  Make sure your head is not leaning too far to the front or back as well.  (And if you looked at the little meercat standing, he’s basically in the right position!)

Then, one final tip that I learned from ballet, imagine a strong magnet on top of your head … and another magnet on the ceiling right above you.  The magnetic attraction is lightly lifting your head, lengthening your spine and your entire body (while keeping everything aligned properly).  Once you are straight and lengthened, you have the very basic stance for your ballroom dance frame.

We will explore more in coming posts!

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