1. Closed Changes
Closed changes consist of three steps: forward, side & slightly forward, close (or for lady, back, side & slightly back, close), and can be likened to the first three steps of a Natural or Reverse Turn, danced without turn. In Waltz, the Closed Changes are used primarily to change from a Reverse Turn to a Natural Turn, or visa versa.
When the basic Natural and Reverse Turns are combined and linked together with Closed Changes, it creates an amalgamation known as the Turn and Change Combination. This simple combination is the basis of many smooth and standard dances, allowing the dancer to navigate easily around the dance floor.
Closed Changes are also useful as a learning tool. As an exercise they can be danced consecutively, alternating right and left foot. This teaches the beginning student fundamental concepts such as foot closure, weight changes, rise & fall, and balance.
Note that the second step is described as "side & slightly forward" for man, and "side & slightly back" for lady. Becuase there is no turn taken on the Closed Change, the body flight will cause the natural momentum of the first step to carry over slightly into the second, and a step that would have otherwise been taken directly to the side becomes "side and slightly..."
1a. Closed Change - Natural to Reverse
The Closed Change that links a Natural to a Reverse Turn is taken toward diagonal center, beginning with the man's right foot forward, which is why it is often referred to as the Right Foot Closed Change. It is danced without turn, preparing the couple to begin a Reverse Turn.
1b. Closed Change - Reverse to Natural
The Closed Change that links a Reverse to a Natural Turn is taken toward diagonal wall, beginning with the man's left foot forward, which is why it is often referred to as the Left Foot Closed Change. It is danced without turn, preparing the couple to begin a Natural Turn.