In response to various posts:
Having your arms slightly out from your body DOES help with balance, by
increasing your moment of inertia. That's why tightrope walkers have
their arms out - not that I am recommending you put them that far out!
Having them folded DOES make it harder to balance! Yes, most people can
still spin, but why make it harder for yourself!
Using your arms effectively can help you spin more easily - you bring
them out a little before the spin then bring them in closer as you spin
- I take my right arm out slightly to the side as I start a
counter-clockwise spin in a right-shoulder dosido and wrap it in front
of me as I spin (I am used to doing this as I teach a number of other
dance styles which have spinning in and it is a key part of getting good
spins). I usually do three spins in a dosido, catching my partner's
eyes three times, so my arm moves out and in three times. For me it is
a reflex action. It is not a big movement, but it helps make the spins
easier and smoother.
You will see ice skaters doing the same thing to get multiple spins.
If you are interested in the science see
I definitely don't get in the way of people's pleasure - I just
tactfully let those who are learning a dosido for the first time know
that they don't need to fold their arms, but that they can if they want
to. We call our sessions "Dancing for Fun" so I make sure every one is
John Sweeney, Dancer, England john(a)modernjive.com 01233 625 362
for Dancing in Kent