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Thread: Shimmy Help

  1. #1
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    Default Shimmy Help

    Help, please!

    I'm so frustrated with my 3/4 shimmy that I could Scream!

    The problem is not doing the shimmy itself - its keeping my upper body still. I tend to "bobble". I've practiced and "worked on relaxing" (oxymoron?) and seem to do ok in the studio, but my video of last night's performance shows that it did not work well. I tensed up and my upper body shimmied, too.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks,

    Jami

  2. #2
    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
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    What tends to happen is performance is always below drilling. You might be nervous, tense, not prepared (when drilling is your first simmy perfect?). So you drill beyond what you need.

    Common causes of getting the upper body involved in a hip shimmy is a locked knee - you have to support yourself with your abs - not a rigid leg or tensing up around the muscles driving the movement.

    The answer, you won't be surprised to hear, is practice. Then more practice. Try and sustain your 3/4 - correctly - for 5 minutes or so. This should then translate into a nice 3/4 in the few seconds you need it on stage.

  3. #3
    V.I.P. adiemus's Avatar
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    ...and Kashmir would probably add (in class) that you need to smile, keep your hands relaxed - and then do undulations. Then of course in a performance you'll do just fine!
    It took me forever to get the 3/4 shimmy (and I probably don't have it now except really slowly), but practicing slowly without the bobble seems to work for me. Then gradually increasing speed and then travelling - but isolating first is the key as Kashmir says.

  4. #4
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    I reccomend picking up leyla jouvana's 21 shimmies and 1001 variations esp if you can get a deal on it; if your budget permits
    but if 3/4 shimmies are really giving you a problem, then i recommend bumping this dvd to the top of your to buy list
    her breakdown and explanation of the 3/4 shimmy is like really great; she spends so much time as the the 3/4 shimmy; and it's not even listed as one of the 21 shimmies; it's in the variations of the hip shimmy
    but she breaks down the beat and exactly what your hip should be doing
    but maybe theory's not your problem?
    because personally, I don't see how you have a problem isolating the shimmy from your upper body; maybe it wasn't explained to you correctly?
    the thing I love about the 3/4 shimmy is that every bellydance teacher will break it down for you differently; there are so many ways to explain what's going on there
    it makes you able to do it better I think

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    V.I.P. jenc's Avatar
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    It was probably nerves. I went to different teacher for a year and didn't do this move. So first time back, when I had to do this move, I tensed up and eveything shook. It's kinda counter-intuitive, but like shoulder shimmies, you can only isolate when you relax ans stop trying to hold everything still!!

  6. #6
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    Thanks for your comments.

    Quote Originally Posted by jenc View Post
    It was probably nerves. I went to different teacher for a year and didn't do this move. So first time back, when I had to do this move, I tensed up and eveything shook. It's kinda counter-intuitive, but like shoulder shimmies, you can only isolate when you relax ans stop trying to hold everything still!!
    Exactly!!! I think this is my problem - when I tense up my entire torso gets into the act. When really tense, it is difficult to keep the isolations in the right places.

    I'm sure practice is the right answer (even if it's not the easiest); when I can really relax the upper body, then shimmy happens correctly. But the harder I try to hold it still, the worse it looks. I'll work on getting the relaxed shimmy going for a longer period of time and a little every day.

  7. #7
    V.I.P. jenc's Avatar
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    you practice and practice and then one day you find you are doing it without thinking whilst just listening to music and VOILA!

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