Finally, a context where I can apply Deliberate Practice in a clear and uncomplicated way (vs Software Engineering or Research)!
I thought, but haven't found a program that I'd be super happy with so far.
So this is where I'll post some notes on ways I found it helpful to practice
Keep track of what you learned and what you want to practice
Record recap videos for the lessons you're taking
Ask friends to record you when you dance and use it to see what you'd like to improve in your dance
For each practice session/social dance - have a specific thing you want to focus on. intention setting
One personally relevant example is paying attention to the frame and connection while dancing socially.
Arguably this is how you ultimately internalize most dance skills
the frame of the deliberate performance is useful to push you to add new things, maintain that focus on improvement vs falling back on what is comfortable
I keep a note with the intentions for the upcoming dance nights
But I struggle to actually keep it in mind during the night
I'm thinking about getting an accountability buddy rn
A related thing I'm experimenting with at WCS Bay Area Discord - is setting intentions together
This helps with remembering to actually set the intentions and serves as a soft form of accountability, though it doesn't replace accountability buddies as no specific person has a responsibility for any other person.
Beware burnout - sometimes it's good just dance and enjoy the flow
Schedule practice sessions with your fellow students
A more relaxed practice environment where you can focus on working on a specific thing and get feedback from your partners and peers.
It removes the pressure of trying to do your best, which I often feel on a social dance floor and allows you to focus on improvement.
In this context it feels ok to do the same movement/pattern many times, experiment with variations, and generally try things that have a high chance of failing, but that would make you better in a long run.
They will know more/different things then you
Or sometimes they can point out when something feels weird even if they don't exactly know what's wrong
Prepare specific questions you can ask an instructor at the next lesson
During a practice or social dance the questions would often arise for me:
I'm not quite sure how to perform a particular technique right
When I lead a pattern X - the followers find it confusing - what am I doing wrong.
It's good to record them and ask them next time you have access to a more experienced dancer.
Not something I've managed to find so far
Some things are clearly foundational (e.g. basic patterns, good connection)
But I would love to see what comes next and also nuts and bolts explanation of them
I'd love to have specific questions I can ask myself/partner and next things to work on
You learn a set of approximations at each level, which are fake but help you get to the next level where you develop a more nuanced understanding.
Private Lessons ?
Plausibly the most effective way (mentorship is consistently very effective), but haven't really done any so far, bc of the associated costs and the feeling that I'm still learning a lot each time I go to a lesson/workshop
How does one choose a mentor?
Word of mouth
Plan to experiment with them soon
Where to practice