Latin - the Party Dances!
My favourite Latin analogy is one you may have already heard; the duck swimming on the water. From above, we see only stillness and smoothness. Below the water surface, those little legs are paddling like crazy, working very hard to keep the duck moving!
In the Latin dances, we want to be like that duck; the lower body is having a party but the upper body is not invited. Our aim is to keep our upper body still, even when internally the muscles are working very hard, creating torsion and preparing our body for movement; the overall effect should be of stillness.
The lower body on the other hand is a flurry of activity! This is where the action is and ultimately where the eye is drawn to. From the bouncing knee and hip action in samba to the smooth walks and long legs lines in rumba, it is that stylistic use of the feet, legs, and hips that really is the show-stopper in the Latin dances.
So remember, Latin dancing is not just all about movement, it is also about stillness and contrast. This is not one big party the whole body is invited to, it is invite-only, and in Latin, the parts of the lower body are the VIPs!