How to Walk in Parallel & Cross System in Argentine Tango

Learn how to walk in parallel and cross system from tango instructors Diego Blanco and Ana Padron in this Howcast Argentine tango dance video.

Female: Hi. So now we’re going to show you walking in parallel and walking in cross system. When we’re walking in parallel the follower tends to always walk backwards. So when you’re walking backwards, a couple of things you want to remember, as you’re walking keep your heels together and toes apart and brush the floor and brush your feet together. If your partner changes direction it will still stay the same in the walk. So no matter if your partner is walking in parallel or cross system you want to really stretch your knees from your hips and brush your feet, keeping one slightly lifted so you remember what leg your on, or what leg he led you.

Male: When we’re walking forward we want to avoid having the cowboy stance, so what we do is we brush our knees together, so think about this, foot, knee, heel, foot, knee, heel, OK, foot, knee, heel, foot, knee, heel, foot, kneel, heel, foot, knee, heel, all around.

Female: So when you’re walking with your partner remember to keep your spine straight, weight over the balls of your feet, and don’t move until you feel a signal, a push or a pull lead from your partner.

Male: So we begin. Shift your weight to find out which leg you’re going to be on. And press the floor to begin. You’re going to be dancing directly in front of your partner in this moment.

Female: So this is walking in parallel system.

Male: Cross system is a little bit different. In cross system there’s a relationship that we want to have, when we do parallel the leg that”s in front of my left leg moves, when we’re doing cross system we change legs, so now when you walk you have a different relationship.

Female: So you want to make sure as a leader that this leg will follow my right leg. So you want to maintain it and brush together, and the other leg will stay on the outside just so we don’t step on each other.

Male: When you’re doing the cross system and you want to change your weight, the easiest way to change your weight without leading it to her is by crossing your feet, we’ll show you how. You take a step forward with the left, bring your right foot in, and here you change the weight, so you take two forward steps with the left. Left, change weight, left. Left, change weight, left. So to begin this step you’re going to change your weight with a cross, back leaders, step forward, cross, and then you have…

Female: Cross system walking.

Male: OK, you want to go back to the parallel you do the same thing, step, cross, but here you want to make sure that you go back in front of her.