Ask the Experts

Creating Topline by Marcus and Karen Hilton MBE in Four Easy Steps

Marcus & Karen Hilton

9 Times World Standard Champions

9 Times World Standard Champions



Want to know how the couple Bill Irvine announced as "The Greatest Champions Ever" achieved and maintained their immaculate topline? Want to know how you can do the same?

Marcus and Karen Hilton MBE show you how in four, easy to follow steps.

To be able to have the correct balance in arm and hand positions whilst stationary or in movement during Ballroom Dance is very important. The placement of the man's right arm, wrist and hand on the Lady is very often misunderstood and I would like to outline this point with Karen's & my own thoughts:

1. Whilst holding the lady's right hand in the man's left hand in the perfect ballroom connection, place the man's (inside) right wrist against the lady's
waist, on her left side.

2. Maintaining a positive connection to the lady's left side, slide the man's right wrist up and into the junction under the lady's arm pit, with a positive upward feeling, (be careful not to apply too much pressure therefore tipping the lady to her right) the Lady should remain in perfect vertical balance.

3. The man should now move his right elbow to his right, (making sure the elbow remains in front of the right shoulder). This action will produce a reaction of the man's right hand connecting to the Lady's left shoulder blade. This action will also coincide with the man connecting his right front to the lady's right front. The right elbow should now be higher than the right wrist and the right hand should be lower than the right wrist, thus giving a diagonal slope from the right elbow to the tips of the fingers.

Remember, the right elbow should at all times be lower than the right shoulder.

The end result should be a perfect balanced connection from the man's right arm, wrist and hand to the lady's shoulder blade, arm pit and under arm.

4. The lady, once she has produced her curve to the left from her left ankle and knee to her right hip and finally out through her left elbow, should now feel that with the connection of the man's right wrist under her arm pit, she can fold her left arm in towards the man's right biceps, from her left elbow, connecting positively with her left under wrist on top of the man's right biceps. There should be no space between the man's right wrist/arm and the lady's left lower arm and lower left wrist connection to the man.

So there you have it. Learn these tried and tested principles and apply them every day to your own dancing. Your topline will increase in connection,volume and style and you will be able to place your body into correct alignments for a better, stronger performance.