Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

Both Hands

The Hold with Both hands is the standard form for the Poussette and for two Scottish Country Dancers Travelling together, Facing each other and using Slip step; it is also an alternative Hold sometimes specified for Crossing or Turning. The joined hands, lefts in rights, should always be at shoulder height of the shorter Dancer.

This Hold should be quite close in Quick tempo dances, especially when Dancing Pas-de-basque; the arms should be parallel with the elbows close to the side and the forearms straight forward as is shown in plan view in the following diagram.

Diagram, Poussette Bar 1

Poussette in 3-couple Longwise Set, Bar 1

1st man's path shown as a full line, emboldened;
2nd lady's path shown as a broken line;
arrow heads show Finishing Positions for 1st man and 2nd lady but not their Facing Directions.

In Strathspeys, it should be an Open hold with the elbows only slightly bent and the hands as widely spaced as is practicable (see the following diagram), apart from those few occasions when Time is short, as in bars 4 and 7 of the Strathspey poussette.

Diagram, Strathspey Poussette - Bar 2

Strathspey Poussette - Bar 2

Strathspey poussette in 3-couple, Longwise set: bar 2.
Men's paths shown as full lines, Ladies' broken, 1st couple's emboldened;
arrow heads show Finishing Positions but not the Facing Direction.

Other forms of Hold with Both hands joined, albeit mostly lefts in lefts and rights in rights, include: Allemande hold, Angel hold, Arch hold when the Dancers are Standing, Birl hold, Promenade hold and Tulloch turn grip.

Links To Pages Related To 'Holds'

Hand Positions

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