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Technique

Jive Technique

Timing

  • 6 count timing: 1a  2  3a  4  5  6  (Beat value: 3/4 1/4  1  3/4 1/4  1  1  1)
    • Common mistake is to dance 1/2 1/2  1  1/2 1/2 1 1 1)
    • Accent on the "2"s (i.e. 2, 4, 6 - contract and kick)
  • 8 count timing: 1a  2  3  4  5a  6  7  8  (Beat value: 3/4 1/4  1  1  3/4 1/4  1  1  1)

Posture

  • Both feet always inside edge, it hurts more than the other Latin dances.
  • Weight is on ball of feet. Lean body slightly forward. Butt sticking out a bit.
  • The head stays in one place, the hips and the feet swing from side to side.

Basic Actions

  • Chasse: Ball - Ball Change action in 3/4 1/4 1 timing (1a  2)
    • 1st side step: very small step, almost next to the other foot, only as much as you can swing the hips under shoulder.
  • Rock step (Link):
    • very small, no time for big step. straighten the leg, but do not lock the knee.
    • do not move body weight all the way back, leave weight forward, front knee bent. back foot just kisses the floor.
  • "Hop" is on accent (end of 2 4 6)
    • Contract core (abs). The standing foot will slide slightly back as a result.
    • Imagine getting mud off the shoe. Weight forward. Knee up, point foot, hip tilt back, kick your own bottom, leg bounce off.
  • "Swing" action: This is not a simple side to side action. It contains both pendulum and metronome action.
    • 1: downward, pendulum
    • a: metronome to make a a little circle and come down again
    • 2: pendulum up again
  • Kick-Ball-Change
    • This is often used in place of basic rock action.
    • Example: kick ball change on R side:
      • Previous beat 'a': contract, 'hop': LF slide slightly back, lift R leg, R knee up, RF kick bottom, tilt hip, upper body forward, height of the head should not change (head should not pop up much).
      • 1: kick leg straight (downward action)
      • a: Ball: Partial weight on ball of RF, contract and LF will "hitch", kick bottom, getting mud off shoe before stepping forward in next step.
      • 2: Change step: place on LF underneath the spine, directly drop down with weight, much quicker (than popping and then down)

Warmup Exercise

Start with weight on RF, LF free.
  • Chasse to Left (1a 2), Chasse to Right (3a 4). Repeat 1 time (5a6 7a 8)
  • Chasse forward (1a 2, 3a 4, 5a 6, 7a 8)
  • LF Forward kick (1), side kick(2), Sailor Shuffle (LF cross behind RF, RF closes to LF, LF step to side. Timing: 3a 4)
  • RF Forward kick (1) , side kick (2), Sailor Shuffle (RF cross behind LF, LF closes to RF, RF step to side. Timing: 3a 4)
  • Repeat forward/side kick/sailor shuffle 1 time. (1 2 3a 4, 5 6 7a 8)
  • Chasse backward (1a 2, 3a 4, 5a 6, 7a 8)
  • LF Backward kick (1), side kick(2), Sailor Shuffle (LF cross behind RF, RF closes to LF, LF step to side. Timing: 3a 4)
  • RF Backward kick (1) , side kick (2), Sailor Shuffle (RF cross behind LF, LF closes to RF, RF step to side. Timing: 3a 4)
  • Repeat backward/side kick/sailor shuffle 1 time. (1 2 3a 4, 5 6 7a 8)
[Repeat whole combination again.]

Variation: Forward/side/cross back slow, then fast; back/side/cross forward slow, then fast
  • LF forward kick (1), side kick (2), LF cross behind RF, hold (3 4) with weight
  • RF forward kick (5), side kick (6), RF cross behind LF, hold ( 7 8) with weight
  • LF forward kick (1), side kick (2), LF cross behind RF (a), RF forward kick (3), RF side kick (4), RF cross behind LF (a)
  • Repeat: LF forward kick (1), side kick (2), LF cross behind RF (a), RF forward kick (3), RF side kick (4), RF cross behind LF (a)
  • LF back kick (1), side kick (2), LF cross in front of RF (3 4) with weight
  • RF back kick (1), side kick (2), RF cross in front of LF (3 4) with weight
  • LF back kick (1), side kick (2), LF cross in front of RF (a), RF kick back (3), RF side kick (4), RF cross in front of LF (a)
  • Repeat: LF back kick (1), side kick (2), LF cross in front of RF (a), RF kick back (3), RF side kick (4), RF cross in front of LF (a)