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Fevah Modern Jive

Learn the essential techniques for lifts. This workshop is a prerequisite for the Lifts workshop where we take the follower above the chest line of the leader.

Due to the nature of the content you must book with a partner as this workshop in non-rotational.

Lifts are for performance and competition dancing only and are not to be used on the social dance floor. The workshop will be presented by a number of experienced teachers/dancers:

  • Deb and Matt who have competed and won the Aerials competition category on a number of occasions
  • Canadian John who has danced this category with a variety of partners (he also wrestles bears in his spare time)
  • Laura comes from a ballet background and helps focus on great lines and clean exits from the moves.

Workshop Content

This workshop will cover:

  • Safety advice for lifts.
  • Essential technique for lifts.
  • A sample of small lifts / baby aerials and two full aerials (including the Supergirl - see video below).
  • Advice on entries and exits and incorporating lifts in your dancing.

Aerials and Baby Aerials Definitions

We consider aerials or lifts to be moves where a dancer supports the weight of their partner with the aim to take them off the floor. These moves can vary in several ways and are often split into different types: baby aerials and full aerials.

Baby Aerial

Is a move intended to take one partner off the floor and support the majority of their weight at or below chest height of the supporting partner.

Full Aerial

Is a move intended to take one partner off the floor and support the majority of their weight above chest height of the supporting partner.

Who Can Attend?

Attendees need to be in good physical condition to be able to learn these moves safely. There are also some prerequisites:

  • You need to book with a partner (fixed couples only)
  • Check out the video below:

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The Introduction to Lifts workshop costs 3 credits / $39 / $30 (concs).

Both lifts workshops can be booked together for 5 credits / $65 / $50 (concs).

Introduction to Lifts Details

  • Date: Sunday, 13 January 2019
  • Start Time: 3:00 PM
  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Cost: see pricing and credits
  • Venue: Avonhead School

Please aim to arrive before the scheduled start time to warm up and get ready. Because we aim to have even numbers arriving late impacts negatively on your fellow attendees.


Most workshops will follow a standard pricing. Occasionally we'll have guest teachers and the length of the workshops may be different, in which case the pricing may differ.

If a Tea Dance is held on the same weekend as a workshop then entry is free in which case we'd really appreciate it if you could contribute a small plate to share at the Tea Dance.

Venue: Avonhead School

  • 55 Avonhead Road, Avonhead, Christchurch
  • The school is located on Avonhead Road just up from Yaldhurst Road.
  • There is some parking near the hall within the school as well as plenty of street parking nearby.
  • The entrance to the hall is at the front of the building near the road.


Our primary concern is safety and due to the nature of the workshop content there are stricter requirements than usual. Please treat this as if you were catching a flight:

  • Everyone needs to be at the venue by the stated start time for the safety briefing, warmup and prep.
  • Doors to the venue will be LOCKED just after the start time.
  • If you arrive after the start time you will not be allowed to participate and you will have your payment refunded.

Lifts require full attention and focus.

  • mobile phones must be switched off or on flight mode - if you need to be on call then do not attend this workshop (you can't get off a plane midflight!).

Attendance at the workshop is at your own risk, while we are putting great effort into the planning and teaching of this workshop, we will ask you to sign a disclaimer that we are not liable for any injuries. There shouldn't be any issues so long as everyone follows instructions and stays focussed.

Couples will be grouped together so a couple practising a lift will have another couple acting as spotters and then swap over. We will show you where spotters need to be and what their responsiblities are.

Physical Preparation

One of the prerequisites is that you need to be in good physical condition to do this workshop. Dancing is good preparation especially if you currently dance at least three times a week. Otherwise other physical activity can help.

Here are some exercises that can help some of which we do regularly. Consult your doctor or healthcare professional for specific advice:


  • press ups with arms by the side, 3 sets of 12
  • pull ups or similar, 3 sets of 5 - 12 reps
  • lunges, 3 sets of 12
  • step ups, 3 sets of 12
  • lifting your partner and walking around


  • sit ups, 3 sets of 12
  • leg lifts, 3 sets of 12
  • Pilates


  • gentle all round stretching

Also search on Youtube for examples of the above. It's not too late to start - it will help the body prepare for the workshop and reduce soreness.

Once you have the right technique, lifts can seem almost effortless, however the journey to gaining good technique can be pretty tiring! Tiredness (physical and mental) often preceeds injury - the time to pause, take a break or stop is when you say "let's give it one more go".

Clothing and other Preparation Tips

Clothing for everyone:

  • avoid slippery or shiny materials - the follower is more likely to slide off!
  • bare skin is good so T-shirts can work well as do shorts
  • avoid baggy or loose clothing, keep it well fitting while allowing you to move freely
  • no skirts or dresses
  • bring a number of items to try out if need be
  • followers - comfortable shoes are recommended especially for when you 'come down to land' from a lift (rather than heels). Bring a few pairs to try out.
  • no belt loops that stick out (fingers get caught in them)
  • no watches, sharp rings, bangles etc.
  • bring enough clothing to keep warm throughout the workshop

Food and drink:

  • have a good meal earlier in the day
  • bring a water bottle and refill it a couple of times
  • we'll provide some snacks but feel free to bring any nutrition of your own
  • for long periods of exercise I (Matt) use Horley's Replace (electrolyte powder) available at good supermarkets or online - much better value than energy drinks and it's made here in New Zealand.

Avoid strenuous exercise the day before and have a good nights sleep ready for an awesome workshop.