There are students everywhere who struggle for a long time before being able to do flaps correctly. In the course Technique 3 – The Flap, there are 16 videos where we practice the feeling of flap, the position of the leg, the movement, the relaxation in the ankle. All of this is to lead us into using the correct technique. Once we are flapping, we try moving in different directions and we do some triplets and syncopations, too. There is even an entire flap Exercise Choreography (mp3 included) to keep on practicing. This is a huge amount of material to help perfect flaps!
The key thing to keep in the back of your mind here is that if you are struggling with doing flaps or teaching flaps, consider not worrying about the sounds as much as searching for the correct feeling and the correct movement. Then, over time, everything will eventually fall into place!
Good luck, everyone, and let me know how it is going!
Paddle or Dig Brush Step Heel is a basic tap step. Most beginners learn paddle pretty early on in their training and do them most often with straight 1/8th notes:
1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &
or with 1/16th notes:
1 e & a 2 e & a 3 e & a 4 e & a
However, there are tons of possibilities. You could do any kind of feel or rhythm you could think of, any kind of notes, anything at all. You could also access the pattern starting on either brush, step or heel, too. This shifting of what is on “1” creates some great accenting changes.
In the course Technique 11 Paddle – Change the “1” we work on 4 phrases of tap dancing that I actually introduced in the earlier paddle course Technique 4 The Paddle – Dig Brush Step Heel and we try the 4 phrases with every conceivable variation — starting with dig, with brush, with step, with heel and beginning on the right foot and the left. All in all, if you do all 10 videos that make up this course, you and I will dance 48 phrases of paddle together — and that’s a whole lot of practice with dig brush step heel!
Good luck, have fun and let me know how it is going for you!