Motion Analysis as Pedagogic Tool in Dance

Learning to Dance Means Learning to Think
  • Martin Puttke
  • Dimitri Volchenkov
Reference work entry


Excellence in dance arises due to a truly exceptional match between movements of all body parts of a dancer and is ruined by tiny imperfections and flaws in performance. We analyzed the technical canon of dance technique by using an analogy to the morphological subsystem of linguistics and described the very basic elements of any dance technique and its roots in human motion system – morphemes of human motor action as an analytic and pedagogic tool in dance. This definition led to a critical analysis of some aspects of traditional teaching methods and questions of attention focus and motor skill learning in dance completed by some relevant historical perspectives. In the biomechanical lab, the practical use of these specific morphological instructions was tested and proved by kinematic data of dancer’s performance while in jumps before and after corrections given by the author.

Finally the new concept Danamos – is described with its core, the seven basic motion morphemes of human motor action, its relevance to any artistic motion sequence, and the cooperation of mental and physical action.


Morpheme Danamos Attention Proprioception Function Canon External focus Dance didactic 



Translation by Jeremy Leslie-Spinks, MsC (Dance Science), ARAD Graphics by Marek Hertel, Berlin 2016, copyright by the authors Puttke/Volchenkov


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Board of German Federal Association of DanceBerlinGermany
  2. 2.Mathematics and StatisticsTexas Tech UniversityLubbockUSA
  3. 3.Center for Nonlinear PhysicsSichuan University of Science and EngineeringSichuanChina

Section editors and affiliations

  • Sebastian I. Wolf
    • 1
  1. 1.Movement Analysis LaboratoryClinic for Orthopedics and Trauma Surgery; Center for Orthopedics, Trauma Surgery and Spinal Cord Injury;Heidelberg University HospitalHeidelbergGermany

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