The Quick Guide
So, now you have an understanding of the basics, let´s put together a master class so you can adopt the fundamentals to work on.
Place a strip of masking tape down the centre of the runway. If a runway is not available for practice, a large space or hallway will work as well. The masking tape represents the centre of the runway, the part where the model is to walk. It will help the model walk in a straight line, learning how to put one foot directly in front of the other.
Hang up a focal point on the wall, a few feet from the end of the runway, at the model’s eye level. This will help the model keep perfect posture while walking on the runway, and stop him from creating a habit of looking down while he walks. A focal point should be bright, highly visible and colourful so models can see it without a problem.
The model should put one foot in front of the other at an outside angle (literally). The toes should face slightly left and right (corresponding to the foot you use of course.) Their footprints should form a zigzag or a V. When done quickly, this gives the body that characteristic swing. Their ankles should never bump; this is painful and may make them fall!
The actual positioning of the foot is specific also. Place the ball of the foot down first (not the toes), then the heel but keep most of your weight balanced on the ball of your foot rather than on the heel. It may feel strange, but keeping much of your weight on the ball of the foot gives you more of an elegant stride.
Practice several runs of walking down the runway, staying on the masking tape and keeping eyes on the focal point. Once the model reaches the end of the runway, he should exit and go back to the beginning to walk again. Repeat this as many times as you wish, because practice really does make perfect. Make sure you are keeping your head up, and your feet are directly on the middle line. Look straight forward; trying to imagine capturing the essence of the clothes you’re wearing with the expression on your face and the music resonating around you.
Next you master the pose(s) that you may be required to make between struts. There are three common poses used at the end of the runway, before turning and walking back. The first one is known as the “c” pose. The “c” pose is when your body creates a shape of the “c”. Once you hit the end of the runway, the model’s left hand should go on the hip / waist, the right toe should point to the right and the head should turn to the right as well.
Learn the next common pose, the “s” pose. Similar to the “c” pose, the body will form the shape of an “s”. With the left hand on the hip / waist, the right toe should point to the right again, but this time the face should turn to the left.
Master the “I” pose. This pose can actually be done two different ways. First, the toes stayed forward, as does the face. The arms can be crossed over the body, giving a bit of an attitude. The second method is to face forward, keep one arm at your side and the other hand on your hip. By twisting your torso ever so slightly, you can create the attitude for which many models strive.
A variety of the most popular catwalk stances are a must know for any aspiring model. Here we present eight of the most popular, but there are indeed other successful variations of these all throughout the industry. Look on these as a succinct starting point of reference.
Teach yourself how to create a proper and fluid turn on the runway. After a three second pose, you should turn using a pivot foot, and pause for two seconds, then walk back down the runway. Practice the turns to them fluid. It is also crucial for the model to keep on the centre line, and keep good posture during the turn as well as the return walk down the runway.
Feel the music. Listen to the music. When the beats to the music are slower, swing more and slow your pace. When you make your turn at the end, make sure your left foot is in front as you pause for a beat or double beat in your music. Your hips, shoulders, and feet should be facing the side of the runway as your head is turned to look straight on at the audience over your shoulder. After pausing or posing for a beat, pivot your feet back towards the curtain or glass, pick up your front foot first (your right foot), and continue walking. Make sure that your face is the last thing to turn away from the audience.