3. Progressive Rocks
Progressive Rocks can most easily be described (from the mans part) as a forward rock step followed by a forward walk to the counts "quick, quick, slow". Each Progressive Rock begins with the man stepping forward on the left foot, replacing weight back to the right foot (the rock step), and then fully transferring weight forward on the left foot (the walk). The pattern is then repeated, beginning with the right foot forward. The lady's part is the "natural opposite" of that, beginning back on her right foot.
Because the composition of each 3-step group consists of two forward steps and one back step, the end result is a movement that ultimately progresses down the line of dance, hence the name Progressive Rocks.
Correct weight distribution is essential in the successful execution of this figure. Dancing to the correct timing requires that steps be complete enough to fully release weight from the departing foot on each of the "quick" counts, yet the body weight must remain central enough between the feet that the weight can shift quickly and not fall behind the beats.
Pay particular attention to the correct footwork, as this can also make a big difference to your ability to keep proper weight distribution and stay on time. Note that the man's footwork on his second step is ball of foot only. The heel may lower toward the floor, but should not touch down completely. Doing so would likely allow the body weight to shift too far backward. By the same token, the footwork of the lady's first step is also ball of foot, for the same reason.
Side Leading or C.B.M.P.?
Like the basic Tango Walks, Progressive Rocks are typically taken in CBMP on the man's left foot, and with a right side leading on the man's right foot. This gives them the same leftward-turning tendencies as the walks. Another popular interpretation, however, is to take the right foot rock in CBMP as well, causing it to curve rightward. If equal amounts of turn is applied to two consecutive rocks turning in the opposite direction, the net result is no turn, and the couple will end on the same alignment they began.
Assembling the Pieces
Progressive Rocks are shown in the charts as a two-measure figure: A rock on the left foot followed by a rock on the right foot. This represents the simplest and most common scenario, however, it is not necessary to dance the two rocks in this order, or even dance two rocks consecutively. An interesting twist is to take one LF walk followed by one RF rock, or vice-versa. The resulting 6-count pattern (SQQS) can be repeated or combined with another 6-count figure and followed by a Tango Close to form a 6+6+4 phrase. (For more info on 6+6+4 phrasing, see the 6-Count Basic).
In the demonstration video, the figure is preceded by two walks, and followed by a Forward Tango Close. However, the Progressive Rocks have many possible entries and exits. For a complete list, see the precedes and follows lists by clicking the appropriate tab above.