Tips & Thoughts

Hugs...

The average length of a hug between two people is 3 seconds. But the researchers have discovered something fantastic. When a hug lasts 20 seconds, there is a therapeutic effect on the body and mind. The reason is that a sincere embrace produces a hormone called "oxytocin", also known as the love hormone. This substance has many benefits in our physical and mental health, helps us, among other things, to relax, to feel safe and calm our fears and anxiety. This wonderful tranquilizer is offered free of charge every time we have a person in our arms, who cradled a child, who cherish a dog or a cat, that we are dancing with our partner, the closer we get to someone or simply hold the Shoulders of a friend.

Why tango changes your life

Why tango changes your life

Your growth in tango, in a broader sense, is about learning what you like, what makes you happy, what gives you pleasure but also a sense of becoming more you - or a better you. Tango is not only about learning how to dance and how to successfully interact with other people, it is also about giving priority to what you personally like. Tango is an extremely free environment that does not oblige you to anything, not even to follow its own loosely defined rules. It is not an institution. It is not a religion. It is not an organisation. And therefore everything about tango is only about your own choice: from teachers and dance partners to the way you look, where you go to dance, which music you dance to and so on. This freedom is also what makes tango so attractive and so rich in its various expressions. For me, all attempts to limit tango to one specific style or one particular type of movement go against the very spirit of tango.

Why we believe that dancing with better dancers makes us dance better

Why we believe that dancing with better dancers makes us dance better

There exists a belief in tango community that sounds something like this: “If I get to dance with better dancers, my dancing will improve much faster than if I only dance with people of my own level.” Or like this: “Experienced dancers should dance more with beginners. How are these poor souls supposed to learn if they are stuck with other beginners?” A female student leaving a class with the words: “Every new follower should be given a very good leader from the start! If we wait for these men here to become decent dancers, we will be waiting forever!”

Why leading is not more difficult than following

Why leading is not more difficult than following

I hear this statement all the time: “Leading is more difficult than following.” Sometimes apologetically, sometimes with the qualifier, “but just in the beginning and intermediate stages,” but always with the bottom line that leading intrinsically requires more skill, more thought, and more attention than following.

This might be okay if it were true, but it isn’t true, and this mistaken belief distorts the true nature of leading and following and leads to negative effects in our dance partnerships and in our communities.

So why is leading actually not more difficult? If leading is not more difficult, why does it seem to be? And what can we do to restore the balance?

Dear Tangueros & Tangueras...

A tango message from Chicho Frumboli translated and shared by Julia Schiptsova.

There is nothing worse in tango than believing that we dance well and have a “level”. A boleo, a sacada, a gancho, a colgada executed more or less in the rhythm, and we already feel that we are “experts”, “critics”, “professionals”... Tango has “this” that for my generation is something new. My generation worked every day to understand, grow, and improve, because the information wasn’t as clear as it is for today’s generations. To investigate, discover, get together with friends to practice what we have studied and learned in a class…. it all seems as if it were from another age...

It’s not easy to keep “motivation” in any part of life. Having a routine, or following a pattern is comfortable for some; for others, routine can be crushing and destructive in terms of both learning and creativity. Some leaders and followers say it’s hard to find a partner to take classes with or to dance with in milongas, someone “who would be at my level” as they describe it, but have they ever questioned if they themselves have that “level”?? I say this because of the competition that exists today.

When learning tango, we have to think of being open and available just as much as in listening to our own bodies and in controlling certain moves that we maybe never thought we could get, in learning about the dynamics, the musicality, the syncopation, the dialog. The technique is the same for men and women, the only difference is that one leads and the other follows. However, I see that often men focus on the movement, without thinking what they express with it, a lot of times those movements have no content and appear more like a monologue that doesn’t include their partner. Hiding behind the movement impairs our ability to commit to the emotions or to another human being in that moment. And women want to be led that boleo that they have perfected and also to be able to connect…. But what if the Wi-Fi isn’t working well? What if this time the Bluetooth is failing us? What do we do??? Abandon it all???

After working for Tango for over 20 years, investigating and creating ever since discovering it, I can tell that my technique is based on “giving and receiving”, listening and responding, on having a dialogue… those who are familiar with it know that it’s what it is. There are not many generous people in tango. What does the “LEVEL” mean? Maybe it’s something that allows us to be a part? To belong to a select group of people who woke up one day and decided that they can convert into critics and look down at others from a different height?? Or is it someone who is aware that there is always something to learn and is available to share? “Outfits” don’t make one a tanguero, a “high boleo” doesn’t make one a tanguera.

What does make us tangueros is the sentiments that we dance and listen to, it’s not only the connection, but also the sentiments for the music, for the shared movement, for the enjoyment of a tanda, with whomever, without thinking of their LEVEL. Learning is a divine state, a beautiful process of exploring. Let’s do it for the tango as the tango has been doing a lot for us. Let’s study it, understand it, take care of it, instead of destroying it with our human banalities.

Let’s caress, embrace, let’s dance with love. The more we give… the more we will receive… The trends, the critics, the experts - none of it exists in Tango. Let’s not contaminate it. I’m waiting for you to enjoy, to have a good time and to share with both, MEN and WOMEN, those who would like to keep growing, who feel that Tango keeps “motivating” them, those who would like to be a part and belong to its world, without the limits. Abrazo!
— Mariano “Chicho” Frumboli
  Chicho Frumboli & Juana Sepulveda

Chicho Frumboli & Juana Sepulveda

Tango Hugs

Tango Hugs

Hugging releases oxytocin and dopamine, meaning that hugs lower stress levels, blood pressure, and heart rate, and they make us happy. They also make us trust and care for each other more, strengthening our relationships and personal connections.  In fact, scientists (who are apparently getting around waaaaay more than I thought) recommend hugging for at least twenty seconds, eight times a day. 

Is Tango For You?

If you’re interested in learning how to dance, Argentine Tango should be one of your top choices. Some call it the "dance version of yoga" or the “Tai Chi of dance” but Tango can really be just as athletic as you want it to be – your choice! All that is required to be a great tango dancer is your desire and ability to move as one with a partner, fully present and fully aware.

In addition to a long list of wonderful benefits, here are 4 great reasons why you should take up tango:

 

leave the rose at home:

If you’re not into flamboyant body gestures, the good news is - you don't have to be flashy in Tango… ever. Musicality, (feeling the music) and connection, (body awareness, presence & attention to your partner) are the most desirable traits in a tango dancer.

Tailored to your brain:

Are you strictly a pragmatist, or is your thinking process more abstract? Do you prefer structure, or are you creative? Are you the type who likes to plan, or are you more spontaneous? Whether you approach tango from an artistic or technical perspective, the dance will intrigue you no matter how your brain is wired. You don’t have to be a certain “type” in order to be good at tango.

Tailored to your body:

Since there are so many aspects to tango, you’ll find that on various occasions, your body type – no matter what it is – will give you an advantage.

free to be you:

If you’re an extravert, you’ll appreciate the social aspect of tango: being around other fun tango aficionados, and getting to meet lots of new people. By contrast, if you’re an introvert, tango gives you a chance to tune out all the background noise, and connect one-on-one with someone. Loud or quiet, the dance suits your personality as is.


To the unfamiliar, Argentine Tango has a reputation for being exotic, difficult, and inaccessible. But in reality, learning to dance Tango is like studying a new language or learning to play a new instrument. It’s an unhurried but intriguing experience that invites you to a deeply personal journey of artistic expression and self discovery.

tango classes

Happy Feet

Happy Feet

An important consequence of wearing high heels is a re-distribution of our body weight over the feet. On high heels, with the centre of gravity shifting forward, almost the entire body weight becomes concentrated on the inner side of the ball of the foot, instead of being spread evenly across the entire foot. As a result, the ball of the first and second toes experiences added pressure.

Tango Nuevo

ORIGINS

Prior to the 1990s, Argentine Tango was taught with a didactic method; teaching tango by having students copy examples shown by the instructor. Emphasis was not given to how or why movement was done a certain way. Starting in the 1990s in Buenos Aires, the Tango Investigation Group (later transformed into the Cosmotango organization) founded by Gustavo Naveira and Fabian Salas applied the principles of dance kinesiology from modern dance to analyze the physics of movement in Argentine tango. Taking what they learned from this analysis they then began to explore all the possibilities of movement within the framework of Argentine Tango. From the work of these founders of the Tango Nuevo movement, there was a shift in all styles of tango away from teaching what to dance toward teaching how to dance.

The Benefits Of Good Posture!

View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/the-benefits-of-good-posture-murat-dalkinic Has anyone ever told you, "Stand up straight!" or scolded you for slouching at a family dinner? Comments like that might be annoying-but they're not wrong. Your posture is the foundation for every movement your body makes and can determine how well your body adapts to the stresses on it.

good posture

Los Códigos del Tango (the tango rules of etiquette)

"I left the first milonga I attended after—maybe, at my most conservative guess—an entire seven minutes. In those seven bewildered and embarrassed minutes, I quit tango, hated all humanity (well, that’s nothing new), and had an existential crisis."

In a milonga, it's rude to get up and ask someone to dance, “thank you” does not mean “thank you,” and unusually prolonged eye-contact is entirely legitimate.

 

I'm a Tanguero

I’m a tanguero. You can enjoy being in my arms, you can enjoy watching me dance or forget about me altogether… but you can’t judge me. If you’re not in my heart, in my mind, in my body… if you can’t feel exactly what I feel with this music, this woman, this movement, you can’t judge me. You don’t have enough information. You don’t know what’s going on in here. Tango is going on in here.