So for-EVER, I’ve been struggling with boleos. Boleo is often translated as “whip” because of the whip-like effect of the Argentine bola (the equivalent of the American lasso). It’s “I’m going this way! Wait! No, I’m not.” And the result is exactly that action-delayed-reaction of a whip. It’s spontaneous fun. It’s letting go at the top of the roller coaster. It’s allowing your body to do what bodies do.
But to execute a boleo requires what many dancers describe as “controlled looseness.” I’m a master at the control part. And can summon looseness at times. But for me, achieving both simultaneously in dance was like waiting for pigs to take flight. My Type A control freakishness meant I was “cheating” my dance partners out of this super cool move. I was too tight, holding myself too close and guarded in my belly. Technically, a lead should be able to indicate a boleo with just the slightest push of energy at the right time. Like a flick of the wrist is all it takes to crack a whip. But with me, it was like having to move one of those piggies that are still waiting to sprout wings.
Even more frustratingly, because it has been my achilles heel I anticipated them which if course, is the direct cause of them not working — the complete opposite of spontaneous fun! If I could just let myself go. If I could just surrender to the boleo!
But on Sunday, I made a major breakthrough. I found myself doing it! Amazing, awesome, exhilarating boleos, over and over again. Yipee!!!
How? Once again, I’ve been over-analyzing. “I haven’t been torqued enough.” “I’m not reaching enough. Or, reaching too late.” — too much in my head. The answer was really where? Yup, in my body.
At the risk of analyzing my success, I will venture to guess that my recommitment to yoga after a a five-year hiatus could be partly responsible. Really, this in itself was out of sheer necessity. I was having serious sciatic issues due to sacral instability, as diagnosed by my licensed physical therapist and BFF, Zen Mommy!
I love the saying that physical flexibility leads to mental flexibility. Because truly, the same duality is mindfulness: relaxed and engaged. “Controlled looseness.” allows for all sorts of amazing, awesome, exhilarating experiences!