Week Nine: Leopard Part Two
This week we will learn additional movements to expand our Leopard repertoire. We will begin by looking at several movements separately, you can then put these together into your own sequences as you play with the Leopard energy.
This Weeks Practice Sessions:
Begin your sessions with the Alignment, Centering and Opening exercises from week one and a few repetitions of the warmups from week two before proceeding onto the new movements. End your session with more of the Alignment, Centering and Opening exercises.
The Leopard movements can be quite tiring, particularly on your legs. If you get tired, take a break and then see if you are able to do more to gradually build your endurance.
Our Leopard walk will continue the focus of joint alignment, square shapes and muscular development.
Step one foot forwards and place it flat on the ground. The rear foot comes onto the ball of the foot and the knee of the rear leg bends. Step forwards and assume this same shape with your other foot forward.
Use the Leopard paws movement with your arms as you step, so your whole body is involved changing muscle tensions and alignments with each step.
Try to keep your body at about the same height as you walk. Their will naturally be a little up and down movement between steps, a little like a Leopard bounding.
Leopard Switch Step
From your Leopard Step position, quickly switch which foot is forwards and which is back. This allows you to change your footing quickly so you are more able to bring the force of your weight and gravity into whatever you are doing on the angle that you would like. It is also great for making small turns of 90 degree or so, which you do simply by pivoting to one side or the other, but you need to you your leg back on the side of the direction you want to turn for this to work.
From your Leopard Step position turn your body and pivot your feet so you are in a horse stance. Open your arms so that they extend out from your shoulders at right angles, and the elbows bend so that the fists point up at right angles.
Turn again so that your return to the Leopard Step position, but facing in the opposite direction now. You will find that you need to slightly lift and adjust the position of your feet as you move through each phase of the movement. As you practice you will get better and better at this. Leopard is all about optimal alignment and foot placement.
From your Leopard Step position launch yourself forward by bringing your back leg forward rapidly and lifting your other leg off the ground. Place your back foot down first and then your front foot again.
Combine all of the movements together to play at moving around with the energy of the Leopard. Let the energy guide you and feel free to improvise further movements in harmony with the Leopard energy.