Self-critical appreciation: floor work

Self-critical appreciation: floor work

Understanding Floor Work

  • Floor work refers to any part of a dance where the dancers are performing at floor level, usually with some part of their body other than their feet in contact with the floor. This can include short periods such as a specific move or extended periods where the dancer is moving across the stage.
  • Different forms of dance utilize floor work in different ways, from the dramatic slides of jazz dance to the controlled falls of contemporary dance.

Mastering Floor Work

  • Effective floor work requires a dynamic combination of strength, flexibility, momentum, and technique.
  • The dancer needs to maintain control over their movements, generally aiming for smooth, fluid movements and avoiding unwanted noise from contact with the floor.

Assessment of Floor Work Skills

  • Evaluating your own floor work abilities can be a vital part of developing as a dancer. Consider factors such as the appropriateness of your movements for the given choreography, the control you display over your body, and the extent to which you are able to use floor work to enhance your performance rather than disrupting it.
  • Feedback from teachers or fellow dancers can be invaluable, but it’s important to also develop the ability to identify for yourself the strengths and areas of improvement in your floor work skills.

Building Strength and Control

  • For floor work, dancers need to develop strength in their arms, core, and legs. This strength should be matched with the flexibility to move into and out of floor work positions smoothly and gracefully.
  • Regular practice can help build up your strength and control for floor work. This could take the form of exercises designed specifically for floor work, or incorporate floor work into more general dance practice.

Incorporating Floor Work into Performance

  • Consider how best to incorporate floor work into your performances. Does it fit the theme and style of the dance? Is it used to convey a particular emotion or tell part of a story? Is the transition into and out of floor work smooth and seamless?

Performing Floor Work Safely

  • Finally, remember the importance of performing floor work safely. This includes warming up thoroughly before any dance activity, wearing suitable clothing and avoiding any movements that cause pain or discomfort.