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Thread: How to shimmy

  1. #1
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    Default How to shimmy

    Hello
    When i do shimmies i always move my knees straight not straight straight not straight ... it makes my hips do shimmies.

    My teacher says that i have to do shimmies only with my hips and not my knees not coming from my knees.
    How can i do this ?

    Thank you

    Yara

  2. #2
    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    Boy, that's hard to explain without demonstrating but it is worth while going to the trouble to learn a hip shimmy done at the hip and not the knees. Hard to shimmy walk if you depend on knees for the shimmy.

    A shimmy is a very tight movement that comes from inside the body rather than at the edges of each hips. Imagine holding a pencil at the center and wiggling it so that both ends move rapidly. You couldn't get that rapid movement of the ends by holding the pencil at each end and moving the ends. You shimmy your hips from the center of your abdomen.

    Hope this makes sense. If not, I'll try again or maybe someone else will jump in with clearer terms.

    I'll bet three quarters of the dancers out there practice shimmies while driving in a car so try this: sit in a chair. Now attempt a hip shimmy by shifting your weight back and forth on your butt bones without moving your upper body from side to side. It's a very small shift. When you feel like you're getting it, take your feet off the ground and try again.
    "Well, now that we have seen each other," said the unicorn " if you'll believe in me, I'll believe in you."

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    Moderator Daimona's Avatar
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    There are so many different types of shimmies, so I wouldn't know where to start except from searching for older threads in this forum for help.
    Found this thread: How many shimmies are there where Kashmir so kindly explain from which muscles different shimmies are generated.
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    Moderator Zorba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daimona View Post
    There are so many different types of shimmies, so I wouldn't know where to start except from searching for older threads in this forum for help.
    Found this thread: How many shimmies are there where Kashmir so kindly explain from which muscles different shimmies are generated.
    Truth. It took me years to master shimmies, and the darn things still give me problems at unexpected times. Heck, they give me problems at EXPECTED times too! It sounds like your teacher wants you to use the obliques to drive your shimmy - which is my preferred technique "most" of the time. Your knees will still "go along for the ride" and flex in and out, but the driving power isn't from there. Oh, and make sure you're not completely straightening your knees at any time with your shimmy, regardless of what's driving it. You'll lose the shimmy for sure, and it *can* cause knee injury (if you're completely straightening the knees).

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    Thank you for your response,
    What do you mean by shifting your weight back and force ? Like go ahead go behind, ?but isnt supposed to be on the other axe way side ?

    Also, if i do little move of the knees my hips moves a little in term of going up, but if i moves more my knees, bend them more my hips side goes a lot more high, i don't know which one is good ?

    Thank you !

    Yara

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    Oh thank you,
    Nobody told me that i shouldn't make my knees too straight .
    She wants for example that if i do shimmies, when i move in the space and i am like a frog (sorry hahaha i don't know the names of anatomy words) like sitting on a chair with knees opens a lot, at this time my shimmies should be working . I don't know if it is clear what i have wrotten .

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    Thank you I will check !

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    Moderator Shanazel's Avatar
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    I'm sorry. I meant side to side. Of course, there is a style I learned as an African shimmy that requires shifting forward and back but let's not worry about that right now.

    In addition to sitting down to practice, you can hold onto a barre or the back of a chair and practice doing shimmies while standing on one leg. Can't use your knees that way!

    Shimmies came so easily to me that I never had to think twice about how I did them until I had to teach them. Rollups- now those were a challenge. I'm not sure I ever perfected them.

    Yara, it helps to stay loose while you practice shimmies. When you concentrate with all your might, your muscles stiffen up all over your body and clamp down on your ability to move your hips.


    Quote Originally Posted by Yara View Post
    Thank you for your response,
    What do you mean by shifting your weight back and force ? Like go ahead go behind, ?but isnt supposed to be on the other axe way side ?

    Also, if i do little move of the knees my hips moves a little in term of going up, but if i moves more my knees, bend them more my hips side goes a lot more high, i don't know which one is good ?

    Thank you !

    Yara
    "Well, now that we have seen each other," said the unicorn " if you'll believe in me, I'll believe in you."

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    Member Bellydance Oz's Avatar
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    Just to be clear, though, there is NOTHING wrong with using your knees to create a shimmy. It's a perfectly valid technique. In fact, in my experience, it's the one that most of my teachers have favoured.

    It's just that there are other ways to create a shimmy, and each one has a slightly different quality.

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    Moderator Zorba's Avatar
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    Heck, I just learned something new in class last nite regarding shimmies. I won't bore everyone with a bunch of details that probably wouldn't make sense anyway, but it has to do with doing a "regular 4/4" shimmy while walking. Something that has eluded me for years, I always want to do a 3/4 of one type or another to walk with. I now at least *understand* what this teacher is trying to tell me, and can kinda-sorta do it now.

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