Wednesday, September 28, 2005


I always have mixed feelings about getting corrections from the teacher in class. On the one hand, I wish I didn't have to be corrected. I want to be doing it right! And I want the teacher to see me doing it right!

On the other hand, I know that I just have to just do it before I can do it right. And it's nice to know the teacher thinks that when I'm off, I'm worth correcting, if that makes sense.

In ballet on Tuesday, Suki had her eye on me. She corrected a few things: my left foot was not straight in pointed position ("sickling" inward) during rond de jamb, for one. Later, she noticed and pointed out that my grandes battements in 2nd position were too far backwards. (Grandes battements are kind of like "staight up stretch kicks," for you TKD people. But we do them to the front, side, and back, and we have to keep our backs and supporting legs straight.)

Though I didn't like the fact that I wasn't doing those right, I did like it that she was watching me.

Tonight, I was watching how Master Hughes gives corrections during forms. It seems he watches each person for a bit, and only gives each person one suggestion. I like this approach. He doesn't overwhelm you with suggestions. He gave me some suggestions on doing the 360 turn going up the "I" on Palgwe 4.

What I really find useful is when the teacher actually moves your arms/legs/whatever into the position you're supposed to be in. Somehow that is really helpful for me--it gets my body itself to learn the new position, rather than having to transfer what's been said through my brain and then down to my arms or legs. At my old ballet school, Donna would walk along the barre and gently nudge arms and legs and backs into correct position.

"I always love it when teachers do this to me," she said. "It makes me feel what's right."

I was glad she said this. It helped me to be less afraid of those inevitable mistakes, made me reconsider the usefulness of correction.

No comments: