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How to get the most from instructional DVDs

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  • How to get the most from instructional DVDs

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    So, you've bought the latest DVD from your favourite dance instructor. You've put it on your desk or on your shelf and tell yourself that you'll get to it when you have a spare moment.

    Now what? Well, for a lot of people, the DVD case gathers dust and that's the end of the story. For others, they watch some of the DVD. Fewer still actually learn the moves and practice them diligently.

    One of the reasons why people buy instructional DVDs but don't watch and practice the content is a feeling of overwhelm: there are eight or more moves featured in the DVD and it's going to take time to work through those and learn them all.

    Another reason why people don't watch and practice the DVD content is that they don't have someone at hand with whom to watch and practice.

    So, this is what I suggest:
    1. (Optional but preferable from an accelerated learning perspective) Watch the DVD from start to finish in one sitting. Do not pressure yourself to try to learn. Just watch with active curiosity and with a relaxed mind and body. Your subconscious takes in a lot more than you realise. Lend it to your dance partner for him/her to watch, also in one sitting.
    2. Schedule a weekly session with your dance partner(s) and/or dance friends. Literally schedule this in your calendar, just as you would a dance class at a school. Treat it as a dance class for which you're paying good money (you already have, in fact, because you bought the DVD!).
    3. Each week learn ONE move from the DVD. Watch that segment with your dance partner and friends and then nail that particular move/combo. Give each other feedback. Take video clips of each other and analyse them. One per week is enough. More than that and you're probably not learning and practicing the move as well as you could.
    4. Spend time revising what you learned the previous week. This helps the moves get stored into long term memory.
    5. Practice in your head before sleep


    Dust off those DVDs and schedule some time with your friends

    James "The Little Gringo" Quinn-Hawtin
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