Release Date:
December 14, 2022

008: Syncopations In Urbankiz

A main characteristic of urbankiz is musical creativity around how we express syncopations in the music. Let's dive into a closer look at syncopations in more detail to gain a better understanding and unlocking more creative options for you to be able to lead and/or follow on the dance floor!

The most common occurrence of a syncopation is the 3 burst (3*) and the second most is probably a 5 burst (5*). Depending on the song the syncopations can even go past 5!

It requires a really good ear to be able to isolate musical opportunities for syncopations on the fly. Where the most prominent syncopation occurs in the music (beat, lyric, melody, etc.)?

Yes, syncopations are faster however it's important to have good techniques to continue to maintain a clear and smooth lead using as little tension possible.

It will be important to keep awareness of whether the partnership is stepping/moving simultaneously, or whether the leader or follower role is being isolated in their steps/movements.

Followers, as you dance with leaders who are leading more intricate urbankiz movements it will be important to get your eyes used to separating what's being led and what you see happening. I go into the 4 Mental Spaces for Followers in the post.

Two Steps of Musical Awareness:

  1. Becoming aware of the musical patterns to know where the musical opportunities are in the beat, melody, and/or lyrics.
  2. Practicing musical targeting to isolate which syncopations you want to express.

Here are some possible partnership possibilities around 3 burst syncopations:

I love image of the Super Mario question block because I see it connecting to the creativity around musical expression to choose which movements to use.

The used block indicates a pause for either role.

Suggested Practice Containers:

Choose a slower song (under 80 bpm) to practice. If you don't know the BPM of the song you can use your best judgement.

If you have DJ software you can create loops and/or slow down the music.

Use can also use some of the free musical loops I created to help you level up your musicality.

If you are struggling with the speed of the syncopation you can remove the scope of the syncopation and practice the moves on tempo, or even 2 or 4 counts!

Another container is also not feeling stuck on the 3* syncopation (even though it's the most common), depending on the musical element and where its happening in the musical phrase, you can have 2*, 3*, 4*, 5*, or more! Check out my blog on musical phrases for more detail!

Also feel free to check out the 44 saidas I touch on in my free Level Up Your Saidas series on YouTube, you can totally add the partnership syncopation possibilities within the container of a followers saida.

There are many ways express syncopations outside of just footwork, be intentional about the scopes you’re training in. A scope could be only steps, only lower body, only upper body, or whole body for example; again think of the Super Mario question block to spark your creativity!

I also highly recommend recording yourself during your practice sessions. Check out my blog on how you can upload unlimited videos for free and also my Dancer's Training Journal to track and plan your practice sessions for increased consistency and accountability.

Here are some more resources to level up your kiz:

Check out more content here!