I hope things are going well and you are noticing the longer days as I am – I always enjoy that aspect of the seasons.
In this update, I want to talk about touch.
This was prompted by an interview of Gene Wilder by Conan O’Brien I recently saw. You can watch the whole thing, but there is a part where Gene uses touch to communicate his message with remarkable efficacy. You can see what I am talking about below – it starts just before the time Gene uses touch.
You can get a sense of how that touch ads conviction to what Gene says about how happy he is. You can possibly also imagine how Conan would have felt when Gene takes his hand like that.
The thing many of us forget about touch is that it is the first language we learn.
Perhaps ‘know’ is a better word than ‘learn’. Without needing an explanation, we understand most of it.
And like with other language, we sometimes do not understand or miscommunicate. However, we also often overcommunicate. That’s because touch can send signals about how we are truly feeling without us realising it. Apprehension and nervousness are classic ones in dance – we don’t want to send those signals; but we do, and our partners pick up on it.
That is when we can be viewed as creepy. The way we touch does not align with the character of the dance. This incongruence cause discomfort that cannot be fully explained – and we use the word ‘creepy’.
So why am I talking about this now?
First, our ability to communicate with touch has taken a battering of late. Because of isolation, we have not had a chance to practice it. So some of us would be out of practice.
Second, when you come back to dance, this is something you can be mindful of to help increase the speed of your reacquisition of your dance ability.
So even if you are touching no-one at the moment (and the Chrissy Amphlett alternative does not count), then be mindful of what you interpret and what messages you might send via touch.
Until next time, I hope you have a great week
This blog is written by the staff at Destine Dance and is inspired by the questions and challenges faced by our students