I just listened to "RadioLab" on NPR
The current show on "Inner Voices" is fascinating and has information about
how the expectations of teachers (or callers) can affect performance. The
impacts of simple word changes in how a task is described can make a
dramatic difference in how people perform that task. The show talks about
research on test performance as well as a study involving the performance
of psychomotor skills (golf).
This research dramatizes how small word choices and attitudes (or framings)
by callers could change the competence of many people in the room enough to
make the caller's job much easier or more difficult. Check it out.
The segment about the specific research begins at about 11 minutes and 15
seconds in. But the entire show is good.
Makes me think about every time I have said: "Now this part of the dance is
a little tricky."
- Greg McKenzie
West Coast, USA
As for the no-thumb allemande: Years ago, I started having a problem with
my left thumb aching for days after a dance, from the allemande lefts.
This started almost 30 years ago, so I can't blame that problem on
advancing age. As far as I'm concerned, doing an allemande without locking
thumbs is an improvement which has been made necessary by the modern
tendency to do an allemande all the way around in four beats instead of six
or eight. I'm always delighted when I run into another dancer who gives me
a no-thumb allemande. Anything that prevents injury is a good thing.
On Wed, Jun 26, 2013 at 12:00 PM, <callers-request(a)sharedweight.net> wrote:
> Date: Wed, 26 Jun 2013 00:03:40 -0700
> From: Erik Hoffman <erik(a)erikhoffman.com>
> To: jean francis <catherineaura(a)yahoo.com>, Caller's discussion list
> Re: [Callers] First-time Contra Dancers and similar figures
> Message-ID: <51CA924C.8060601(a)erikhoffman.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed
>  An aside: many people call this the "wrist grip" form. I encourage
> us all to remove the word "grip" from out teaching lexicon, as gripping
> has led to griping, and that (IMHO) horrid no-thumb allemande... The
> connection is through hooks and surfaces to lean on, not through
> gripping. And, although I don't like the no thumb allemande, when do I
> teach this form of star, I encourage all five fingers, thumb included,
> going over the top of the wrist in front - no grip.
> erik hoffman
> ~oakland, ca