The American Spin is a nice simple step that can look quite impressive and, in my opinion, is a lot of fun too. (But I have always been partial to turning!)
Essentially, this moves sees the gentleman acting as a strong, stable source from which the lady can get momentum and balance. Just like in everyday life, right, boys? ;)
Once again, you have it easy boys. Your footwork is simply a basic; do your rock step and then two small chasses practically on the spot. If you move, you will make things very difficult for your partner.
Start in a Left to Right hand hold, lead her forward towards you on the first chasse, but dont let your elbow get behind your body. That tension will allow her to feel that she can use the strength in your arm to push off (when indicated, of course) and do her turn. In between the two chasses give her a very slight releasing push with your hand and prepare to collect her hand again at the end of the chasse. You can take her into Left to Right hand hold and repeat, or you can take her hand as she faces you again and collect her into closed hold to get into any other step. (Counting should be something like: "Rock, Step, 1, 2, 3, push, 1, 2, 3")
You have the tricky job again, ladies! I know you can handle it! Start with your regular Rock Step backwards on your Right foot, and when led, take the first chasse forwards towards your partner instead or to the side.
This should create a nice resistance in the connection between you and your partner in your arms. Never allow your elbow to get behind your body.
As you finish the first chasse, and just before the second, your partner will give you a small 'release' although you should be creating your own momentum by storing the potential in your connection with your partner. Your chasse will have been Right, Left, Right, so leave your Right foot where it is, pick up your Left foot and turn towards your partner/the Right,
completing the last chasse (Left, Right, Left) either facing your partner and moving to the left, or use it to complete your turn if you dont feel comfortable spinning the whole way around on half a beat.
Notes for both the Leader and the Follower:
- Connection with you rpartner is very important. Girls, use your men, that is what they are there for - to help stabilise you and to give you something to push off of in order to get your turn going. Guys, be aware that any significant action you do to try to 'help' you partner in this situation is more likely to actually throw her off. Be gentle, but solid, for her!