Kung Fu Tango -- Learning From Bruce Lee

--What is the highest technique you hope to achieve? --To have no technique. It is impossible not to think of tango, hearing some of the conversations in the Bruce Lee film Enter the Dragon. --Kick me (Bruce Lee to one of his students) student kicks --What was that? An exhibition? We need emotional content. Try again. student kicks again --I said emotional content. Not anger. Now, try again. With _me._ student kicks again --That's it, how did it feel to you? [Read More]


I hear it every so often: that tango technique, especially for women, has gone through a tremendous evolution since the resurgence in the early 1980s. Let’s just say I’m not quite convinced. Watch this clip from the 1988 movie Tango Bar, and draw your own conclusions.

Experiment shows: walking heel first more efficient

This will not, of course, settle the agelong debate of whether to walk toe first or heel first in tango. Still, I found it interesting that there has recently been published research on the efficiency of the human walk, specifically investigating walking heel first versus walking toe first. If you are striving for the most efficient walk, their conclusion might be worth noting: When human subjects walked with their heels slightly elevated in a ‘low-digitigrade’[toe first] posture, COT [cost of transport] increased by 53% above that of normal plantigrade [heel first] walking. [Read More]

Walking on high heels

[caption id=“” align=“aligncenter” width=“599” caption=“Cinderella discovers the risk involved in dancing too wildly while wearing glass shoes”][/caption] Sure he was great, but don't forget that Ginger Rogers did everything he did, backwards... and in high heels. I had the pleasure of dancing with a woman in Buenos Aires who really knew how to operate her feet. She worked in television in her country, and was known as ’the woman that knows how to walk on high heels’. [Read More]


by OpenThreads Breaking the dance of tango down to its smallest parts is a popular exercise. Why stop at forward-side-back-steps? What it really comes down to is one simple concept. If you can do it, you can tango. Or at least you need to be able to do it to dance it. Standing on one leg. For a week-end class, we had one student with some condition that made it impossible for her to stand on one leg. [Read More]

Up and down

by Scott Ableman -Have you been practicing tango nuevo? Guilty as charged. He knew immediately. And it was not because I used an open embrace, we were practicing milonga, using a very confined embrace. I often wonder why people get so hang up on the somewhat arbitrary distinction between open and close embrace (all teachers, both “nuevo” and others usually promote very close embrace at times, but for some figures it is not possible to maintain the closest embrace. [Read More]

Boleos helados

by Hettie McFarlane Limerick’s post on boleos made me think of the concept of boleos helados, or frozen boleos. I went to a workshop with Chicho and Lucía a couple of years back, and while the frozen boleos were sort of fun, it ruins your boleo technique if you shape your boleos that way. Methinks. The intrigueing thing about boleos is their free flowing unmanaged quality. Or as Limerick says: [Read More]