There are plenty of videos out there on how Latin hips should look. However, this can only help so much. Certainly looking at yourself in the mirror also provides a good indication of how well you are doing. But still, if it’s not looking right, then it can take a while to work out what you need to do differently to make those hips work. This article will provide you with some extra pointers on how Latin hips should feel so that you can better practice them by yourself. At the end of this article you will have a much better idea if you’re doing your Latin hips correctly and what you need to do to make them better.
Why do Latin hips well?
Latin hips are essential to many dances: obviously, the Latin ones. However, if you can do Latin hips well, then your body moves better, and you can do other dances well. Not only that, but getting your hips moving in the Latin hips pattern helps you work on isolation between your upper and lower body. This isolation ability is essential to good looking dance. You might have seen a video on the innergame of dance facebook page that showed how significant this isolation is to attractive looking dance. Finally, it is an excellent warm up before dance to make it feel more enjoyable and easier.
That’s three reasons for being able to do Latin hip and do them well. They improve body movement, they look good and they are an excellent warm up tool if you do them right.
What are Latin hips?
If you’ve had someone explain Latin hips to you, then you’ve likely been told that your hips need to make a figure 8 pattern. This article assumes that you already know what Latin hips are or at least what they look like. However, to make sure that you are properly following what I am saying I will give a brief overview.
You can also, do a search on the internet for video on Latin hips too. There are plenty out there.
Imagine that the red outline in the left most frame of the image below is your hips when standing up straight and the figure eight in black is the path that your hips make. The first stage of doing Latin hips is shown in the upper right frame of the image. Each stage is shown in the following frames from top to bottom and left to right. The final stage is the same as the first and the process continues. We will refer to this image in the next section.
How do Latin hips feel?
Knowing what Latin hips look like and the basic path is just the start. The next stage is to know how they feel. When you know how they feel, you can be more certain that you’re doing them right by the feedback of feeling.
Now first consider the image below. It shows an idealised torso and the anatomy of that region. This will be used to explain the muscles that you should feel working as you do your Latin hips.
At this stage you will feel the left abdominals working – these are the muscles highlighted to the right
At this stage you will feel the left side of your core working – these are the muscles highlighted to the right
At this stage you will feel the left back muscles along the spine working – these are the muscles highlighted to the right
At this stage you will feel the right abdominals working – these are the muscles highlighted to the right
At this stage you will feel right side of your core working – these are the muscles highlighted to the right
At this stage you will feel the right back muscles along the spine working – these are the muscles highlighted to the right
This is a guide for when you’re starting to work on your Latin hips or if you want to double check that you’re doing them right. You can place your hands upon those parts of your core to check that the right muscles are working at the right time. Otherwise, if you simply do your Latin hips for a while the muscles will start to fatigue, and you will easily feel each group of muscles working in turn.
When you’re good at your Latin hips, the muscles will just work and you won’t be that aware of each muscle working.