Overturned ganchos 101

In Tango 3 tonight (see, I'm doing it before I forget!!), we worked on overturned ganchos. This builds on the con back boleos we did last week.  Of course, you can do con and contra overturned ganchos, but I think the con ones are easier. We worked on leading them from an open stance, or accompanying it with a step together step approach. I think the latter approach is easier, but there are more separate parts to screw up ;-)

Follower tips:

  • Stay on axis until the way, way end of the step--at which point you can cheat a little to get a bigger gancho.
  • Overturn on your support leg (not at the hip) until your support foot actually faces AWAY from the lead. You may end up with your butt against the belly or hip of the leader.
  • Keep your embrace energized: even if you are in the right position, the gancho (like a boleo) won't have that SNAP! feeling if you have separated from the leader's embrace.
  • Send your leg THROUGH, not up ('nough said!) in order to avoid groin injuries for the leader. On a good day, I have actually felt the small of the leader's back, or their belt, against my leg/heel.
  • Collect as you overturn. DO NOT swing your leg through as a windup. The release of the step is a linear boleo-like movement. Not collecting results in leaders with ankle bruises.

Tips for leaders:

  • On preparation step, usually a back cross for the follower, step a bit long and a bit towards the follower so that the follower's axis is between your feet and close enough to touch bodies at the end of the move.
  • As the follower is sent into a back rotation, overturn with your chest as far as you can (not your shoulders, not your hips!) so that the follower gets the message to overturn immediately.
  • After leading the overturn, you can rotate the follower a little bit on the Fl's axis, so that you can pick the right position for the step. This also gives the move a bit more momentum/snappiness.
  • Only at the end of the step can you "cheat" around the follower by leaning a bit or applying some Body English to the move.  Don't count on stretching your arm out or tilting your body, etc. to actually lead the step!

Line of dance (LOD)
Remember that if you can't use this step on the dance floor, it is of little use. Figure out what direction you need to face in order to set up the move to either progress down the floor, or only go reverse line of dance (RLOD) one step. The unwind should progress down the floor as well.  Otherwise, you'll hold up traffic.

I suggest only using one back cross or an entire ocho to prepare for this move: you will keep doing them, holding up traffic, worrying that it's not QUITE the right one to try to overturn :-) Another useful entry into an overturned gancho is a front circular boleo: pick up the momentum of the unwind from that move, and add to it for overturning into the overturned gancho.

To exit, consider using a front con boleo, a Ld sacada through the follower's front step, or some such thing to diffuse the momentum and continue down the LOD.

Good luck!