Imagery for “Nose over toes”

A skier in green helmet and silver suit stretched out over their skis after launching from a ski jump.
Photo credit:
Hinzenbach, Austria, FIS Ski Jumping World Cup Ladies 2017
Wikimedia 20170205_Ski_Jumping_World_Cup_Hinzenbach_7638.jpg

In class, you may hear the rhyming cue, “Nose over toes.” We talk about how this posture helps by bringing us close to our partner while still allowing space for feet and leg movement below, and how it makes the heels lighter to make weight changes and pivots easier.

What does “nose over toes” posture look like? What does it feel like?

Have you ever watched Winter sports, such as the Olympics or World Games? Do you remember the ski jump and how, after the long slide down that steep ramp, when they launch into the air, the skiers stretch their bodies out over the tips of their skis?

Sometimes it helps to create extreme images and body experiences, and then we can dial that back to what is most useful and within our (now expanded) range. Play with that image and feel of your body stretched up and out over your short, short “skis”. Take it to your limit, then back off little by little until you feel stable but maybe not comfortable (yet!).

Take that to your practice, your lessons, and your dancing. Beware that your body will try to put you back in its comfortable, easy position. Don’t let it! Send your attention away from the newness, the oddness of the feeling, to the new sensations of what this position allows. Assume a relaxed curiosity about how your body uses its new ability and awareness.

We’ll be ‘skiing’ you en la pista. Have fun, y’all.

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