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Contra Check

Waltz Contra Check

The Contra Check is a Gold Level 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
1
LF fwd in CBMP DW, pointing almost LOD H or Ball Flat Body turn to L -- CBM Down with knees slightly flexed If preferred, could be LF fwd with foot flat.
2 2 Transfer weight back to RF DW T Body turn to R --
Rise e/o 2  
3 3 LF to side in PP FDW, moving along LOD TH -- --
Up, Lower e/o 3 Turn may be made between 2-3 to end in PP moving DC.

Follower

Step Timing Movement 
Alignment Footwork Turn Sway CBM Rise & Fall
Notes
1
1
RF back in CBMP BDW, fee almost BLOD T Body turn to L -- CBM Down with knees slightly flexed The step needs to feel more free. Lady does not bend straight back, there is rotation and head continue to extend go along body line.

Prep: bend/lower left knee, shoulder level off, rotate hips to left.

Big step back after rotating hips (if step is too short, upper body weight will take over when doing contra check), also need bigger step to create more extension. CMBP (do not get into Man's space). 

RF point back first, toe turned in, then on ball of feet, keep right heel up (solid, not heel moving down and then up), weight split. body rotate to left, but keep left side up to Man (though body is turning left and shaping). don't break neck.

Keep left toe down on floor, do not lift. LF is pretty much flat on floor.

Flex both knees, weight in the middle, not on back foot. but left leg can extend to be more straight during extension, right leg is bent.

Get there first, then give hip and ribs to Man for extension (left leg can go more straight at this time, a bit more weight on RF, but keep R heel up). 

Lift glute and center up to Man. (butt cheek up) and give whole R side to Man. Imagine stretching R side longer to give to Man more, effect is shaping and extending to left.

Upper body has the look of rotating/shaping to left (but don't rotate away from Man, upper body and hip to Man), head "finishes" the extension with breathing. (Don't be afraid to extend head more. Go into Man's R hand.)

The whole body is not one piece. There is torch in upper body - rotation and sway and at tail end, stretch even more before recovering. The elasticity doesn't stop.

Continuous extension and all the way to head. Upper body, not locked and still, but stay soft and flexible, go and fill the space Man created with his R arm/hand.

Don't break neck.

Don't "sit", don't just go "down" which feels heavy. Continuous shaping and then bounce up. Man start recovering after Lady finish extending head. 
2 2 Transfer weight fwd to LF BDW T Body turn to R --
Rise e/o 2 Push off back foot into PP. Time the push off together with Man. 

Make sure to stay very left (has tendency to shift to R, get into Man's space). Keep big frame and give R side to Man, don't fall to PP.

At end, start articulating head turn
3 3 RF to side in PP FDE, moving LOD TH 1/4 to R between 2-3 --
Up. Lower e/o 3 Articulate head.

Make sure R side is to Man.

Prep for next step: Lower first and step big.

Note