There is no “correct” way to Swivel….. – Peter Loggins

Swing outs that start with “walk walk” are a pretty rare in the places I dance. Perhaps that should be swing outs are a pretty rare sight in the places I dance and walk walk swing outs are occasional exotic visitors. I had the pleasure of dancing with a walk walker the other night and whilst I like the dynamism of a walk walk swing out, swivels are such a part of Lindy Hop for me that it’s almost like doing another form of dance when I don’t get an opportunity to swivel (I’ve never got the hang of swivels that start on 5 and finish on 8).  As Julius on Jive Junction rants:

“Where the hell did swivels go? When swivels have been replaced with “walk walk”, that is the first step on the staircase to Satan.”

Here are some other ‘recent’ swivel related items:

Rebecca Brightly’s video on How to Swivel With Confidence

An older post that I like from V is for Vintage about LA Swivels: Swivels: Practice that Shoulder Stuff

Updated to add in another older post from Nick Williams called Dean and Jewel: The Legacy which has a good section on Jewel’s swivels

A question on BQOTD where there some discussion about swivels, I am always amazed at how people on discussion forums like this can be so certain about the correct way to do a dance move. I think the best comment in this thread is from Peter Loggins:

“There is no “correct” way to Swivel….”


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6 responses to “There is no “correct” way to Swivel….. – Peter Loggins”

  1. Sarah C says :

    Swivels are like fashion. Different flavors come and go like a trend, and the ones worn by our celebrities make the rounds through the follows as the best ones or the right ones.

    Just like clothes, the right way to do it is what feels good right in that moment. It’s what you feel like doing. Express yourself. Just like every other part of Lindy Hop. Dance good, feel good.

    Casey Schneider was hawking a rock-step at some point and I liked that as another bit of vocabulary when the mood strikes.

    Too much damn focus on swivels. /get-off-my-lawn/

  2. Depressive Dancer says :

    As a beginner, the swivels are my favourite bit. The swivels I can manage. I know where I’m going with swivels, and how to do them (very badly, there may be no ‘correct’ way, but my way is very probably wrong!).

    It’s the rest of the swing out that’s the terror inducing ride of doom. I forget what my feet should doing, what direction I’m headed in and which way I should be facing. I gaze at my lead with a mixture of trepidation and horror and pray for it to be over soon.

    How on earth does one get into the swing of swing outs?

    • sleepingglitter says :

      Not sure if swingouts ever get any easier. There are so many styles, different types of connection and timings used that I don’t know if you can ever do anything more than go with the flow and stop worrying about feet and direction.

      I’ve been taught swingouts as choreography which require you to know the footwork to make them work (but I don’t know anyone who actually dances this way) and I’ve been taught the other extreme in which all the follower is required to do it keep moving forwards and allow the leader redirect movement 100%. I’ve been to classes where extreme counterbalance was required and I’ve been to classes where followers were asked to keep 100% of their own of weight and make minimal connection.

      I am no expert and my swingout skills are minimal and very rusty but I would say stop worrying about your feet – if you get it really wrong you can fix them quickly enough – and as for the direction, I would let the leader worry about that and wait until he redirects you somewhere. Easier said than done I know.

  3. Sarah C says :

    If your feet are what’s worrying you, drill the basic footwork rhythm over and over. Step-step, triple-step, step-step, triple-step. Walk all over the place, changing direction, spinning, turning, going back-wards and forwards, all in that rhythm. And then in all different tempos. Play music. Until it comes naturally, until it’s easy.

    Footwork comes with practice. So practice smart and have fun while you do it. We play footwork follow the leader sometimes in classes.

  4. LadyD says :

    I am terrible at swing outs always end up on the wrong foot, panic and do some little jig like move to get on the right foot. And I can’t swivel on swing outs (yay now I know what the move I call the ‘bum wiggle’ is called)….I’ve tried picking it up just from watching others but I really can’t get it right. Just look like a toddler having a tantrum when I try.

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