Big Rowan Ackison (greensh) wrote,
Big Rowan Ackison

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The Perfect Swing

The swing is the center piece of contra (contradancing). I can't dip worth a darn, knees and back issues, but I can do a decent swing. The swing can be a complicated bit of timing and position between the participants, and it becomes truly a lovely thing when things come together.

Sarah Lyons was one of the first people that I had a “perfect swing” with. I remember that it was an eye-opening, beautiful experience. Recently she visited from school and we got to relive the experience. This has resulted in a few thoughts about the perfect swing.

1) The speed of the perfect swing does not have to be fast or slow, but it does have to be in unison.

2) Physical proximity is best when it is neither too close nor too far. The balance between the freedom to move, and the stabilizing physical connection, is the key. Too close inhibits freedom. To far destabilizes the physical connection. Each couple defines their appropriate proximity.

3) The perfect swing is effortless, like walking on air. The partners support each other even as they propel themselves forward.

4) A smile warmly shared is the indication that all is well in the world. A sincere smile is more important than eye contact.

5) Footwork does not have to be identical. It can be very different as long as each partner is able to do their own thing, together. The important thing is that the result be movement in respectful unison.

6) Gender, body type, social statues, and age are not factors in the perfect swing.

7) The perfect swing is modified to accommodate the physical surroundings as other couples are respected. The result is that the swing is perfect, be it expansive or small.

8) A dancer who is a perfect swing with one person may not have a perfect swing with you. Connections between people are uniquely personal, and the perfect swings we do have should be treasured and not forced.

9) The perfect swing is enjoyed and appreciated by both parties.

Does this sound like a list describing a perfect relationship? It does to me!
Tags: contra, perferct, swing

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