Clogging Thoughts

No, I’m not thinking about kitchen drains or bathroom toilets. I’m wondering why I continue taking clogging lessons each week, you know, the dancing that is all foot work? Sometimes called buck dancing or jigging? I just survived another class, barely survived.

Lessons began again three weeks ago. I’ve been going in early, catching the tail-end of the beginner’s class in hopes that the review would help, and it has to some extent. At least it helps me get my brain and feet warmed up so that when the next level class begins, I can keep up. Since I had to quit last September due to my knee, I fell behind the group that I took beginner classes with last year. They are all easily into the Intermediate level while I’m still struggling at the Easy level.

Today I felt encouraged because the first dance we did (after the Beginner class ended), I was able to keep up, do all the steps and feel somewhat proficient. And then it went downhill from there. Before the class time was over (the Intermediate class time), I had to wave the white flag and bow out partway through learning new steps for a new dance. The brain was fried and the feet no longer moved in synch with anything.

Of course, the fact that my thyroid medicine dosage has just been changed but not yet fully taken effect did not help. Even before I went to class my body ached in every joint and my brain was fuzzy. If I didn’t know better, I’d think I was coming down with the flu. Hopefully the upped dosage will kick in before the weekend, as we’re planning a weekend full of square dancing!

I keep waiting for clogging to become fun. In the year that I’ve been taking lessons, I can think of about four or five instances where I caught a brief glimpse of “fun.” The rest of the time it has been hard work and frustration. So why do I keep trying? Because I want to like it. I want it to be fun. I know it should be fun. It could be fun. It just isn’t yet.


  1. Anita

    I’ve always wanted to try clogging, I took tap for a few months and then had to stop. I am hoping to go back again in the summer. Maybe you could take the beginner class again with the intermediate class for a little while, until you feel comfortable with all of the steps again. That is what I will probably have to do with the tap class when I go back.

  2. Roberta

    Karen, You shouldn’t be too hard on yourself. My ballet teacher, who was quite wise, said that you need to practice dance (at the level of a having a full class) at least twice a week to stay at the same level and three or four times a week to progress. It has to do with building the muscle and nerve cells. Once a week just isn’t enough. Even if you practice at home, it is hard to achieve at the same level as a class. Dancing is tough.

    • Karen

      Thanks for the pep talk, Roberta! I feel like I should practice at home, but I don’t. I do wish the classes were a couple of times a week, though!

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