Tango today! This standard dance is actually the easiest to practice in smaller spaces- the lack of swing and rise & fall makes it a bit more manageable when it comes to making it fit into your living room. Read our guide to practicing Tango at home and click on IGTV buttons for a short video with all of the exercises.

TANGO

how to practice at home- PART 4                       

Hope you’re having a great time practicing- if you haven’t seen our previous post on how to practice at home just have a look at previous posts HERE. 

We’ve put together some ideas on how to practice Tango at home. It looks like lockdowns and restrictions will last a few months more, so we can try and use this opportunity to work on our leg/foot actions, frame and body action coordination. The exercises below are very basic and simple enough for everyone to grasp and can be upgraded easily for more advanced dancers. Let’s go!

 

“THE EXERCISES BELOW ARE SIMPLE ENOGH FOR EVERYONE TO GRASP- ADJUST DIFFICULTY IF YOU’RE AN ADVANCED DANCER”

DURATION OF PRACTICE: 90 min

The practice session excludes the initial general warm up and the stretching that should always be a part of your practice routine. We’ll tell you more about this in future posts, for now just keep in mind that you should never dance without warming up first, even if it’s in your living room.

EXERCISE 1- LEG ACTIONS

HOW TO DANCE IT:                                           

 – using forward and backward Tango walks, dance around the space available, changing direction of travel from fwd to bwd every 4 steps; each step is counted Slow. See the IGTV link below for execution

– keep your arms in practice hold (pictured) or proper frame- in this case we suggest you use an elastic for easier coordination

PAY ATTENTION:

– using count 1,2 (two beats) for each slow step it is important to remember that central balance should be achieved on the first beat. On second beat body weight transfer is completed and new moving leg is recovered under the body

DURATION OF EXERCISE

Use slow or normal speed of music, repeat the exercise twice- each time for 2min.

CLICK ON THE IGTV IMAGE ON THE RIGHT TO SEE ALL THE EXERCISES!

EXERCISE 2 – BACK CORTE

HOW TO DANCE IT: 

– we’re using a basic figure Back Corté to combine the coordination of head movement to correct leg actions and changes of direction

– we chose this figure because it’s quite easy to turn around your small space, turning 1/4 during each execution- feel free to choose your own figure that keeps the normal, right to right position of centre to start with

– in the video we omitted very dynamic body actions in order to show the most basic version; coordinating the head movements with the steps. For advanced dancers a stronger rotation for dynamic & extension should be used

– we suggest using an elastic for easier coordination of arms with the movements

DURATION OF EXERCISE: 3 min

CLICK ON THE IGTV IMAGE ON THE LEFT TO SEE ALL THE EXERCISES!

EXERCISE 3 – CHANGES OF CENTRE POSITIONS

HOW TO DANCE IT: 

We’re using two figures- Closed Promenade & Five Step to train the different positions of centre. This combination includes Promenade, Closed and Outside Partner positions- even though you’re probably dancing solo, the correct use of rotations is important to dance this combination

Make steps as long as you can- use the whole space available and don’t forget about the leg/foot actions & head coordination you’ve practiced during previous exercises.

DURATION OF EXERCISE: 3 min

CLICK ON THE IGTV IMAGE ON THE RIGHT TO SEE ALL THE EXERCISES!!

EXERCISE 4- CHOREOGRAPHY PRACTICE

Now to the most difficult aspect of practicing at home- training your competition routine. Be ready for some bloopers as you first try this- it feels very strange and it’s easy to get disoriented as space is completely wrong for this kind of practice.

HOW TO DANCE IT:

Split your choreography into sections where each section is 8 bars of music. To give yourself some structure, practice each section for 5 min without music, 5 min with slow music and 5 minutes with normal speed.

This will give you roughly 15min to dance through each section. Don’t worry about directions, turn the routine so you can fit it into whatever space you have.

Concentrate instead on specific aspects of your dancing- what do you want to improve? As we’ve done all of the previous exercises with the goal to improve leg/foot actions, head movements & rotations in Tango, you could try and apply it to your routine as well.

DURATION: 

if you want to keep to 90min practice plan, then this gives you about 60min for this section- meaning you can practice 4 parts of your routine.

Don’t worry about not training all of your Tango in a single practice- the next time you come back to practicing this dance, start with the sections you didn’t get to during previous training session.

CLICK ON THE IGTV IMAGE ON THE LEFT TO SEE ALL THE EXERCISES!!

EXERCISE 5 – DANCE THROUGH

Good job, just one more thing to do before you’re done! Put on some music and dance through your whole Tango routine. Dance with the muscle tone, energy, expression that you would use during a competition- nothing but the amount of travelling you do should change!

Keep in mind that it will feel super strange to dance with direction that are all over the place. Don’t worry- think about your frame, body actions and leg/foot actions, directions will be easy to recover once you can practice on normal floor.

Dance twice for 90 seconds with 2min break between executions. Pay attention to how the parts you’ve practiced during the previous section are working and where you find the most difficulty- this way you can correct it during your next practice session or ask your teacher about it during the next online lesson.

There you go- you’re done! 

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Keep dancing peeps, competitions will be here in no time!

 

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