|Lesson #3, Basic Beach Bop
Half Turn: This turn is similar to the under-arm turn from lesson #1, except it is done with two hands. You will both change positions and the guy will turn to his right (Clockwise) while the lady turns to her left (Counter clockwise). On one, two, guys, you will clear the slot, leading the lady forward while raising her arm up and to her left. Your right hand is holding her left hand. On three and four, guys, you will have wrapped her (her right hand will angle to her left and her left hand will angle to her right). Guys, you will then have changed positions and that momentum will cause her turn in a clockwise manner. Five and six are for recovery. Guys, on one you clear the slot by moving your left foot out to the left.
The Tangle: Another two handed turn with a higher degree of difficulty than the Half Turn above. This turn starts from a change hand turn position. After you change hands, guys, your right hand will be holding her right hand. At this point, reach over the top with your left hand to hold the lady's left hand. This will be on the five and six count. On the next one, two, guys, you clear the slot by stepping out to the left with your left foot as you lead the lady forward. On three and four, the lady will pass under the left arm of the guy while she executes a counter clockwise turn (to the lady's left). Recover on five and six (this is where the guy gets back into the slot). You now are facing each other with a right hand to right hand hold. Your hands are still crossed, but now the guy's right hand is over his left. On the next one, two, guys, you will step left with your left foot while you raise your right hand (along with the lady's right hand) up and over your left shoulder. Guys will execute a clockwise turn on three and four, and both of you will recover on five and six.
Gettin' out of the Tangle: The tangle will go on as long as you keep in this position. The escape is just like getting into the turn. Guys, you will drop the lady's left hand and execute another change position turn. This will put you back into the original position.
The Basket Turn: This turn is similar to the half turn above. This turn belongs to the "Push- Pull Series" that is normally taught during an advanced or workshop lesson, but because it is a two handed turn, we will possibly cover it briefly. Remember, in the half turn, the guy's left hand is holding the lady's right hand, and the guy's right hand is holding the lady's left hand. On one, two, guys, you will step out with your left foot, while leading the lady forward in the slot, and raise her right hand over her left shoulder. Keeping her in this "wrap" position, guys, you travel around her on three and four, where your momentum will pull her gently back in the slot. Guys, you will pass by her right side on one, two; go around behind her on three and four; and pass by her right side back to your original position on five and six. Ladies, your foot work will be to step forward on one, two; execute three and four in place; and step backward to your original position on five and six.
At this point, you have been shown enough to dance. If you have practiced the basics to the point that you own them (that is to say that you can do the basics like you walk...without having to think about it) then you are ready to go on to advanced or workshop lessons. If not, then you should plan on going through the basics again. We have many, many people who go through the basics time and time again before they feel comfortable with them. The key is for you to feel comfortable with them.
Practice, practice, practice! These are the three keys to better dancing. Many people take classes and then leave when general dancing starts because they feel like they are not good enough. Nuts! Everyone starts out the same. You can get better only by practicing. And don't think that everyone is watching you because it isn't true. No one really cares that you are just starting. No one cares that you can't dance like those who have been doing it since the fifties. In fact, most people watch the better dancers...that's where they can learn something new, pick up a new turn or step. Anyway, it's now time for rule #3...
Have Fun! ! !