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Thread: Figure 8

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    Senior Member LadyLoba's Avatar
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    Default Figure 8

    Befores I ever found this site...I bought some very basic belly dance instruction DVDs, and have dug them out of the drawer and started going through them again.

    And while I'm getting most of the other very basic moves down...I cannot do a Figure 8 to save my soul.

    I can do a hip circle....and I can put on that old 60's song and do "The Twist" and I can do hip lifts...so I'm not injured or anything...my 8's just look kind of...incomplete....

    what could I be doing wrong?

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    Member mahsati_janan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyLoba View Post
    Befores I ever found this site...I bought some very basic belly dance instruction DVDs, and have dug them out of the drawer and started going through them again.

    And while I'm getting most of the other very basic moves down...I cannot do a Figure 8 to save my soul.

    I can do a hip circle....and I can put on that old 60's song and do "The Twist" and I can do hip lifts...so I'm not injured or anything...my 8's just look kind of...incomplete....

    what could I be doing wrong?
    Which kind of figure 8 are you trying to do? Horizontal or vertical?

    It might just be that you haven't yet developed the extension or control to make it look the way it looks on the dvds. If that is the case, it will just be practice to get it right as the muscles become more accustomed to the dance isolations.

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    Senior Member LadyLoba's Avatar
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    Horizontal....

    I think it's the very first one you're taught...???? It's in both my beginner DVDs I have now.....

    you are no doubt right....might just be a practice thing...as in....need to keep practicing.

    I remember being able to do it well last year...but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't in a LOT better shape last year....belly dance is part of me trying to heal from a tough year, and that year left me pretty much in a bed or a chair, eating more junk food than I need.....I didn't gain weight...but I didn't get any healthier or more toned either, that's for sure..

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    Member mahsati_janan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyLoba View Post
    Horizontal....

    I think it's the very first one you're taught...???? It's in both my beginner DVDs I have now.....
    Yep - they usually teach the horizontal 8/infinity first, but every now and then a video will pop up that starts with the vertical.

    The first thing I would suggest is watching your posture and making sure your knees are staying softly bent. Next try going into each part of the movement separately. For example, twist hips, slide hips to corner, arc hip to side and then to the back corner, pull/slide back to center and then across to opposite corner. Sometimes breaking the movement down into each tiny part will help you to find the trouble spots. If you have a mirror available, also try both facing the mirror and facing away from the mirror. For some dancers, the mirror helps them perfect their moves, but for others it is just a distraction. As you keep learning to dance, you will find out which way works best for you.

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    V.I.P. Greek Bonfire's Avatar
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    I wish there was a ready made way to execute moves, but there isn't. It's practice like a mofo. It took me four years to do a reverse camel, and it can still be polished. Mayas are still not my favorite either. Some moves come easily, others take much longer to get.

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    V.I.P. Ariadne's Avatar
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    Ummm... have you had the "pencil" method suggested to you yet? It's... embarrassing but it does work. Basically you imagine pencils attached to your body at various places and visualize drawing different shapes on the walls or floor.

    A couple more ideas from a past thread - http://www.bellydanceforums.net/inst...nce-moves.html

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    Senior Member LadyLoba's Avatar
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    OH good...I thought that was just me....that's exactly what I'm finding out...e.ven at the very basic level...some of the moves are so easy for me it feels like I've always been doing them. I got hip circles, the basic Egyptian shimmy that's in both DVDs I have, and the hip drop down as fast as a beginner could.....most of the rest of what I'm learning has come a little more slowly.....and then there are the Figure 8's...chest circles....and the Lebanese shimmy from amira's 101 DVD that are just going to take more practice and more corrections with me....

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    Senior Member LadyLoba's Avatar
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    Pencils....no but Ill sure try that!

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    Moderator Farasha Hanem's Avatar
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    Start out with the horizontal figure eight and picture the 8 on the floor. Just follow through each part of the 8 with your hips, and it does help to imagine drawing the 8 with your hips.

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    Hi!
    My teacher teaches it using a combination of the "pencil method" and the "way broken down" method. She starts off with having you imagine that a pencil is attached to your belly button, pointed down. Then while keeping the upper body turned towards the front of the room, you rotate your hips (like at your waist) towards the back right corner of the room, and then keeping them level, "draw" a circle with your right hip toward the forward right corner of the room, coming back to neutral. Repeat with the left side. She starts off by doing like 8 counts on each hip, then 4, then 2, then finally 1 until you are connecting the two circles with no break in between. She uses the same method for the myriad of figure eights that there are.

    Hope that helps!

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