Back in 1977 I took 30 weeks of Whip
lessons, but not once did I practice afterwards. First I signed up for a 10 week Whip
class. I was considered one of the best beginners, or so I was told. With that
encouragement I signed up for the next two levels as well.
Unfortunately after seven months, one day I realized I
knew lots of moves, but could not put two of them back-to-back since I had no "muscle
memory". Muscle Memory is the process of transferring information from your
brain to your body. Moves that feel awkward and mechanical in class have a way of becoming
fluid with repetition. Just as a golfer must practice his swing, a dancer must practice
his lead. I knew I should have practiced, but I didn't. Why not ?
The reason was simple : I did not practice because I
lacked the confidence to ask any of the ladies taking the class to go dancing with me so I
could get better. In other words I needed to practice to gain confidence, but I since I
lacked confidence I didnt practice. In disgust I quit.
The absurdity was not lost on me. Later when I became an
instructor I made a point to take my entire class out dancing. Having a built-in
opportunity to go dancing with the instructor as a guide made all the difference in the
world to my students. I named these after-class adventures Practice Night.
Practice Night amazed me !
In the beginning I could have predicted the
rapid improvement I saw in my students dancing as the result of Practice Night.
Obviously people who practice get better. That I could have predicted.
What I did not anticipate was the unbelievable number of
friendships that developed as a function of having these large groups of people dancing
together. Quickly Practice Night came to mean more than a simple chance to improve dance
skills; it became an important opportunity to hang out with the gang.
Dance and Romance
Over the years SSQQ has been given quiet credit for
countless romances and marriages too. We have been encouraged to enter the "dating
business" many times, but I am convinced such an ill-conceived idea would jeopardize
Instead we remain a nice, safe place where people come
to dance, see their friends, & have a good time. Today Practice Night immediately
follows every class starting at 9:15 pm. We turn down the lights, pump up the volume, and
start the Dance. With our large dance floor, no smoking rule, and great music, the
conditions are perfect for dance and romance. Cover charge is $3 to $5 dollars. The
"Magic" is free. Come find out for yourself !!