Correct Tango Posture

What is the correct posture to dance the Argentine Tango? Is there such a thing as “correct" or “ incorrect" posture? The short answer is, yes. We will get there step by step. Building tango posture is a process, and we need to begin somewhere unexpected.

Finding and keeping good posture when you dance will help you improve your tango skills enormously. In order to know how to get there, we need to first find the starting point. Helping you locate this point in your body is the purpose of this article.

Let’s get started. We are going to begin by developing a clear sense and feeling of your posture before and while you dance. Keep this phrase in mind: "Start where you are, and go from there." 

  1. Stand up with your feet together. They should be touching.
  2. Take your dance position, holding an imaginary partner in your arms.
  3. Bring your attention to your body alignment, and to your feet.Notice, but don't change anything yet.
  4. Ask yourself:
    • In which part of my feet have I placed most of my weight?
    • What are the sensations I feel in this position?
    • How is this position working in relationship to my own balance?I feel stable. I feel unstable.

Congratulations! Your have found your starting point.Feel this position as fully as you can before making any changes. You may want to move in and out of this position to learn to recognize it.

Now let’s explore and play with this sensation and expand it to find and define the balance-areain your foot. This is the area that you use as the base for your tango posture. We are going to build your tango posture from the bottom up. How you place your weight on your foot-balance-area is paramount for good posture.

Finding your foot-balance-area:

  1. From your starting point (the one you just found), shift your weight to the front of your feet.
  2. Pause, and feel.
  3. Now shift your weight to your heels.
  4. Pause, and feel.
  5. You are exploring the range of your foot-balance-area
    • It has a front edge, a middle, and a back.
    • If your toes lift when you shift your weight back, you went too far.
    • If your toes cramp when you bring your weight forward you went too far.

Good posture and body alignment for dancing tango begins in your feet. This dance asks you to walk, sometimes shifting your weight to the front part of your feet, other times to the heels. An ideal tango-foot-balance-area is alive, aware, and attuned. Either direction you go, forward or back, try to always keep your toes relaxed and down. Now you can start from here and go to wherever you want.