A Small Theory of Techno Dancing

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Pair dancing has never been my favorite activity. Already at high-school, it was more of a comedy than a delightful experience. During dance lessons my partner would hiss at me: "Can you please lead properly?" To which I would reply: "What do you think I'm doing here?" Of course, she would have the last word: "And you want to be a leader? You will never make it into business school."

Today, many years later, I'm at the business school, but I'm not doing any pair dancing, thank you very much. I'm dancing to Techno music of all sorts, which I find much more rewarding than the strict ballroom dancing forms that were forced down our throats during high-school days. Techno dancing as an experience has not been explained well in my opinion, so I'm giving you my shot at why Techno might be for you.

My small theory of Techno dancing has three major parts and one conclusion that puts the parts together. The three parts are about the mechanics of dancing, your brain and its endorphines, and your relationship with the DJ. It all comes together in what can be a very delightful experience akin to a multiple-hour orgasm.

The mechanics of Techno dancing are all about rhythm. Common to all Techno music is a basic beat, underlying the whole music, a beat that determines the base frequency of your moves. Most people use the legs to stomp in sync with this beat, but it could be any other body part. In fact, most other body parts, arms, hands, fingers, shoulders, head and hips should move in sync with this rhythm. But it is usually the legs which follow the basic beat, and the other extremities move in multiples of the base frequency. So while my legs may be stomping, my hands may be moving twice as fast.

Next to the frequency, you have amplitude, so you can have larger or smaller swings. You can lock parts in, for example move arms closer to your shoulders. You can do all kinds of things that create new forms and moves. The variations are endless. Some call it being on auto-pilot, but I think technique sets you free.

At the same time you are following the music. Ideally, you've put your homework or whatever bothers you aside, and you tune in to the music. Not just the beat, but the melody. The beat is for improvising the basic moves in its endless variations. The melody is for feeling happy. If you have ever seen the joy in a baby's eyes when you repeat something well-known, you know what I'm talking about: Repetition makes happy. And if the melody is right, feelings of happiness will surround you and lift you up.

Finally, the source of all good and evil is the DJ. He or she decides by the virtue of his abilities whether you can tune in to the music or not. As a dancer on the dance floor you do not depend on any specific other dancer, even though you can try to react to or sync up with a friend or a group. However, the DJ is more important. He directs the beat that you follow and he thereby frustrates you or lifts you up to a higher sphere. That's why knowing your music and your DJ is critically important.

A DJ should play a set of at least two hours, uninterrupted. Three to four hours is better. Over this time period, it all comes together. Your brain, in tune with the music, reaches a paradoxical state of meditional calm and excitement. Your body, engaged in hour long physical activities, is sending your brain all the right signals. Physical exhaustion, much like a runner's high, causes a massive endorphin rush. If hit right on, this can be an ecstatic experience, stretched out over several hours.

A good DJ understands this process. He will increase the intensity of the beats and melody over time, drumming you to one or more climactic highpoints during his set. It may be multiple intermediate highpoints or it may be one single virtual finale, who knows, it is up to the DJ. That's why the DJ is so important. It may sound over the top, but Techno dancing can be safe sex with multiple-hour orgasms.

This experience depends on a number of factors: Your physical condition, your ability to let go, and the quality of a DJ who knows how to handle his audience. These are the most critical ones. The endorphins, the intensity of the experience is real, and in my opinion the closest you can get to an orgasm without having the real experience. Think about it: Multiple hours!

All I can say is: Go, try it!

Copyright (©) 2007 Dirk Riehle. Some rights reserved. (Creative Commons License BY-NC-SA.) Original Web Location: http://www.riehle.org