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Feather Step

Foxtrot Feather Step

This is a Newcomer figure. This online reference gives a detailed description of the dance steps, including timing, footwork, alignment, and movement; steps diagram; a list of figures that may precede or follow the pattern; and videos providing instruction and demonstration of the figure, techniques and practice routines that include it.

Leader

Step Timing Movement
Alignment Footwork Turn Sway CBM Rise & Fall
Notes
1
S
RF fwd
LOD
HT

S
CBM
rise at e/o 1
There is CBM, so frame turns to R.
Step in between lady's legs.
2
Q
LF fwd, prepare to step OP L side leading
LOD
T

R

Up

3
Q
RF fwd in CBMP, OP
LOD
TH

R

Up, lower e/o 3
* OP: RF is on same track as LF for Man.
* When it's outside partner, it sometimes feels like Man's left side is tilting when in fact it actually is straight.
* Note the footword is TH, don't do heel lead. The excruciatingly correct footwork is: point right toe forward, touching floor with outside edge of toe, and sliding that toe forward as you push off your left foot.
* at the end, start unwinding as body lowers.
4
S
LF fwd
LOD
H
  S
CBM    

Follower

Step Timing Movement
Alignment Footwork Turn Sway CBM
Rise & Fall
Notes
1
S
LF back
BLOD
TH

S
CBM
rise at end of 1, NFR
Because of CBM, frame turns to R.
2
Q
RF back, R side leading
BLOD
TH

L

up, NFR.
release toe of front foot as it starts to move back towards supporting foot. L shoulder forward.
3
Q
LF back CBMP, OP
BLOD
TH

L

up, NFR, lower e/o 3
Finish outside partner. Lady's left side should be extending quite forward (CBM), may feel tilted.
4
S
RF back
BLOD
T

S
CBM


Technique Notes

  • Feather step can also be danced DW or DC.
  • The feet are always passing, so there is less rise and fall than in waltz.
  • On the feather step, there is CBM on the first step, so the frame turns to the right. On the three step, CBM happens gradually across the three steps, so the frame is wound to the left by the end of the figure. The motion is like swinging like a monkey from vine to vine.
  • The feet stay in contact with the ground all the time. When stepping back, the leg needs to swing back like a pendulum. The tip of the toe touches first, and then one rolls back onto the foot. The heel does not touch the ground until the feet are even.
  • Feather finishes usually a note "body turns less", but there is no note "body completes turn".  Although there is slight turn to L on the second to last step of a Feather Finish, the body does not really complete turn until the last step.

Types of Feather

  1. Bronze: Feather Step
  2. Bronze: Feather Finish -- first step taken back -- see also Reverse Turn
  3. Silver: Feather Finished started with Partner OP on L side
  4. Silver: Feather Ending -- first step taken in PP
  5. Silver: Hover Feather
  6. Silver: Feather Step started OP
  7. Gold: Curved Feather
  8. Gold: Back Feather
Special Note -- In the charts above it will be noted that on all Feather Finishes a note is given "Body Turns less" but there is no note "Body completes turn". Although there is a slight turn to L on the penultimate step of a Feather Finish, the body does not really complete the turn until the last step.