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How to Do Mambo Crossover Breaks

Learn how to do mambo crossover breaks from dance instructors Aaron Mitchum and Kristina Reese in this ballroom dance tutorial from Howcast.


Aaron: Hi guys, it's Aaron.

Kristina: And I'm Kristina.

Aaron: And we're professional dance instructors here in New York City and today we're going to be continuing in our mambo series taking a look at the crossover breaks. So, for starters we're going to be starting with the two-hand hold. We could actually start this one with a two-hand hold or from a closed position. But either way, today we're going to start it with a two-hand hold. Starting with our basic action, breaking forward guys, two, three, four. Two, three, four. So we just completed one whole basic action.

And now from here we're going to lead with our left arm across, turning to our right for the gentlemen, our left for the ladies, and taking our free leg, gentlemen our left, and stepping across, two, three. Together, passing through the center again, and now repeating to the other side. Two, three, four. And again. Two, three, four. And now finishing it off with a lady's underarm spot turn. Two, three, four as we rock back gentlemen. So let's take a look at that one one more time. Basic. Two, three, four. Crossover. Two, three, four. Two, three, four. Two, three, four. Spot turn. Two, three, four. And again picking up with our basic action. Now let's talk a little bit more in detail about what the lady is doing here.

Kristina: Okay. So ladies, when the gentleman is trying to lead this move it's important to, again, be responsive and really let him lead the figure. And so one of the ways to do that with the crossover breaks is to keep your arms accessible. So I'll just demonstrate that. As he's leading me through the crossover break, I keep my hands available so that he can direct me to another crossover break or maybe he's going to direct me into a different move. And I have to kind of always be ready for whatever he might throw at me next.

Two, three, four. Two, three, four. Two, three, four. So right there I gave my hand back in an area where he can kind of see it and easily grab it so that he can lead me to another crossover break or a different figure. Two, three, four. Two, three, and four. So for the turn, I'm going to take my left foot, cross it over my right foot. I'm going to pivot around on that left foot, so that left foot is essentially stuck in place. Transfer my weight back onto my right foot, close my feet with my left foot, have my right foot available to go back to the basic.

Aaron: Let's try that with some music.

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