> History of foxtrot

> Foxtrot: American, International, Social, and Quickstep

v American and International; Foxtrot and Waltz

The following question comes up regularly:

> I keep hearing that if you know the American Waltz,
> all you have to do is convert the 123 timing to SQQ
> and you are automatically doing the American Foxtrot.
> Is this true in general, or does this rule applies
> only to a small subset of Waltz patterns? [Tom Quan]

It seems to apply to American Foxtrot/Waltz that is silver syllabus level and above (i.e. the steps you learn once you get into "continuity styling"). I'm just getting started competing in Smooth and my American Waltz and American Foxtrot routines are identical :-) Eventually we'll make them different from each other, but my partner is new at this and so we wanted to keep things very simple while we worked on technique. [laura-djn ]

The foundation of American Foxtrot and Waltz at silver syllabus level is a knock off from a small subset of International Foxtrot.

American Waltz/Foxtrot International Foxtrot
Twinkle Hover Telemark into Promenade
Open Right Turn Open Natural Turn
Spin Twinkle Open Impetus
Continuity Ending Feather
Open Left Box Open Reverse Turn with a Feather Finish

Besides the above mentioned foundation steps, most people who dance American Waltz at silver/gold/open level also incorporates some steps from International Waltz syllabus. However, a lot of steps in International Waltz syllabus aren't applicable (not cool to use) in American Foxtrot choreography. [G. Lee]

A related question:

> I have no idea why there's no spin turn in International Foxtrot.
> Natural turn in Q, W, F; Impetus in Q, W, F; spin turn only in Q, W. [Victor Eijkhout]

While that's an accurate summary of the figure names, the same names can refer to different figures.

In particular, the "natural turns" are different in all of the three dances. In the waltz, one closes the feet on both halves of the natural turn. In foxtrot, the feet pass in both halves of the turn. Quickstep uses the first half of the waltz natural, and the second half of the foxtrot natural.

Perhaps this gives us a clue as to why the spin turn is absent from the foxtrot: International foxtrot's linear exit from the first half of a natural turn is not conducive to commencing the strong rotating action of the back half of the spin turn. Both Quickstep and Waltz end with on a high rise with the feet closed, and this is what I think lends itself to the entry to the second half of the spin turn.

This also explains why the spin turn is absent from American continuity style waltz and foxtrot, which like International foxtrot use open foot positions and linear exits from the first half of their natural turns. [Warren J. Dew]

> Foxtrot timing

> Bronze level American Foxtrot

Contents of the r.a.d. FAQ

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Last modified on: 2000, Saturday December 23.