Select Page

Sometimes new(er) callers or dancers will ask me how I prepare for a dance. There’s a lot that happens behind the scenes. My club dances have different requirements than my guest appearances. Both dances get something special. Each gets a unique treatment.

First off, at no time do I ever completely “wing it.” I’ve been calling long enough that I can do a lot with minimal preparation. However, minimal is different than “none.”

For a club dance, I’m in a position to know¬†what calls haven’t been used in a while or might be a little rusty for some people. So, I’ll pick a call or two that need some TLC and figure out how to present them in such a way that makes them feel new.

For example, say I want to review Touch 1/4. This is not super hard. However, to make it feel “new” maybe I’ll use Left Touch 1/4.

I’ll ask myself, “What an easy way to set up Left Touch 1/4?” The easy answer is “Left Square Thru 4.” The easy answer is also the wrong answer.

I want to set up success and avoid frustration. An easy set up that makes a Left hand free is “Square Thru 3.” It will keep anxiety/frustration levels low, so that becomes my “go to” call as part of the set up.

From a Static Square, “Square Thru 3” is equivalent to a Partner Trade. So, that won’t work. I want dancers looking at their Corners. A “Star Thru” would do the trick *but* it would make the Men have to use the Right Hand twice. Square Dancing is the “Art of Dancing with Hands.” A better choice is “Slide Thru.”

I train dancers to touch hands as quickly as possible. The sequence looks like:

  • Slide Thru [Touch]
  • Square Thru 3 (Prompt: “Here comes a Left Hand”)
  • Left Touch 1/4

100% success with lots of confidence!

What comes next? I’ll save that for later. Here’s a hint, it involves preparation.

Share This