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  1. #1
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    Default Confusions about Egyptian Shimmy

    I do Egyptian Shimmy without lifting my heels at all, however, I can't get that loose and big with hips wiggling side to side kind of feeling. It seems to me that the only way to achieve it is to lift your heels a little bit, but my weight shifted forward a bit at the same time (I can still wiggle my toes tho ) which I assume is bad. Am I correct?

    Another question is when you do a hip slide with shimmy, do you lift your heels a bit when shifting weight?

    Thanks in advance.

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    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BellyBee View Post
    I do Egyptian Shimmy without lifting my heels at all, however, I can't get that loose and big with hips wiggling side to side kind of feeling. It seems to me that the only way to achieve it is to lift your heels a little bit, but my weight shifted forward a bit at the same time (I can still wiggle my toes tho ) which I assume is bad. Am I correct?

    Another question is when you do a hip slide with shimmy, do you lift your heels a bit when shifting weight?
    Not sure what you mean by "Egyptian shimmy" - from the rest of the post I assume you don't mean the Modern Egyptian "straight-leg" shimmy made popular by Raqia which is very small.

    If you mean the one where the hips go up and down, I don't see where the wiggling side to side comes in. There is a folkloric twist shimmy where the hips go forward and back. Both of these are generated without using the heels (they can be done on demi - but that is another issue)

    The loosest hip shimmy would be the waist driven up & down one (the knees bend and straighten but they don't drive it). Heels down. With weight shifts - heels down. The drivers are the obliques (and QLs) contracting - you do not need to lift your heels.

    Question - can you stand and bend both knees without lifting your heels? Yes? Then you can shimmy without lifting your heels. If not, try some calf stretches.

    Now - rock slowly - moving your hips up and down. Heels down? Good. Now move your weight over one leg - keep those heels down. Now speed it up a little - then a little more. Shimmy - loose butt and thighs - even - smooth - and heels down.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kashmir View Post
    Not sure what you mean by "Egyptian shimmy" - from the rest of the post I assume you don't mean the Modern Egyptian "straight-leg" shimmy made popular by Raqia which is very small.

    If you mean the one where the hips go up and down, I don't see where the wiggling side to side comes in. There is a folkloric twist shimmy where the hips go forward and back. Both of these are generated without using the heels (they can be done on demi - but that is another issue)

    The loosest hip shimmy would be the waist driven up & down one (the knees bend and straighten but they don't drive it). Heels down. With weight shifts - heels down. The drivers are the obliques (and QLs) contracting - you do not need to lift your heels.

    Question - can you stand and bend both knees without lifting your heels? Yes? Then you can shimmy without lifting your heels. If not, try some calf stretches.

    Now - rock slowly - moving your hips up and down. Heels down? Good. Now move your weight over one leg - keep those heels down. Now speed it up a little - then a little more. Shimmy - loose butt and thighs - even - smooth - and heels down.
    Thanks Kashmir, the Egyptiam shimmy i learnt are the ones straightening and bending your knees, If i do it with heels down, my shimmy are not as big and wiggling as my instructor, and i can't bend my knees as much as her. How do i get my moves look bigger?


    I tried the loose shimmy you suggested, i can shift my weight when i do it slow, but i found it difficult to speed it up. I will have to keep practicing, thanks for advice.

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    Practice improves both range and precision. There are no shortcuts.

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    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BellyBee View Post
    Thanks Kashmir, the Egyptiam shimmy i learnt are the ones straightening and bending your knees, If i do it with heels down, my shimmy are not as big and wiggling as my instructor, and i can't bend my knees as much as her. How do i get my moves look bigger?

    I tried the loose shimmy you suggested, i can shift my weight when i do it slow, but i found it difficult to speed it up. I will have to keep practicing, thanks for advice.
    Two points - first is how much movement you can get up and down on a hip rock (with the heels down)? I can get 100mm. For this I need soft knees and reasonable ROM in calves and waist. If you base move is small you need to look at your technique for this move.

    Next, for the shimmy the movement is much, much less - more like 20mm (harder to measure!). The big "wobble" comes about because I am relaxed.

    Yes, practice - often as you can - but as well as you can. Don't "practice" tightening up and freezing - if this happpens. Stop. Breathe. Wiggle. Start again. Then stretch out how long you can hold the shimmy - 30s? 1 min? 2 min? etc - work up to say 10 minutes.

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    V.I.P. Yame's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BellyBee View Post
    I do Egyptian Shimmy without lifting my heels at all, however, I can't get that loose and big with hips wiggling side to side kind of feeling. It seems to me that the only way to achieve it is to lift your heels a little bit, but my weight shifted forward a bit at the same time (I can still wiggle my toes tho ) which I assume is bad. Am I correct?
    I know exactly what you are talking about. My "default" shimmy is a shimmy driven by the bending and straightening of the legs, much like what many people call the Egyptian shimmy. In my default shimmy, I keep my weight centered on my feet and the legs go from a relaxed position (almost straight but not straight) into a very very slight bend. This allows for my hips to go up and down.
    If I want less up and down motion and more of a sideways jiggle (which is what a lot of people are talking about when they say "Egyptian shimmy), then I use the same technique but change the posture. I shift my weight to the balls of my feet and straighten the legs even more so that they go from very slight bend into a straight position, alternating. However, I do NOT lift my heels. You can shift the weight forward without lifting the heels.

    Quote Originally Posted by BellyBee View Post
    Another question is when you do a hip slide with shimmy, do you lift your heels a bit when shifting weight?
    Thanks in advance.
    Not at all. A slide is a flat movement, there is no sense in lifting the heel to achieve it, whether or not there is a shimmy layered in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yame View Post
    I know exactly what you are talking about. My "default" shimmy is a shimmy driven by the bending and straightening of the legs, much like what many people call the Egyptian shimmy. In my default shimmy, I keep my weight centered on my feet and the legs go from a relaxed position (almost straight but not straight) into a very very slight bend. This allows for my hips to go up and down.
    If I want less up and down motion and more of a sideways jiggle (which is what a lot of people are talking about when they say "Egyptian shimmy), then I use the same technique but change the posture. I shift my weight to the balls of my feet and straighten the legs even more so that they go from very slight bend into a straight position, alternating. However, I do NOT lift my heels. You can shift the weight forward without lifting the heels.


    Not at all. A slide is a flat movement, there is no sense in lifting the heel to
    achieve it, whether or not there is a shimmy layered in.
    Thank you very much! You did such a good explaination. I finally got a clearer picture of where the movement comes from.

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