No announcement yet.

Standard Fancy dance Roach length??

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Standard Fancy dance Roach length??

    Is there a standard roach length for fancy dance regalia??

    Thanks in advance,


  • #2
    Boozhoo niji,

    It is personal preference, but here are some tips. First of all, go and borrow someones roach for a fit, perferably a short one. . Ask nicely and everything should go smooth. Put on your shoulder bustle and the roach, wear it where it feels comfortable. Then have someone measure from the front of the roach down to where ever you want the end of it to hang. I have seen a lot of dancers let their roaches hang into the middle of their back bustle.

    I just mad ea new one, its 18" and that is where it ends up, the end being right in the center of the rosette in the bustle. It doesnt seem to get hung up or anything while I dance unless I turn my head and rock my shoulders.

    If you order from a catalog then you are stuck with certain lengths, but if you make your own you can make any length you want, and if you are skilled in making things then making a roach is a very rewarding experience. You can make the base any color you want and dye your deer tails any color you want.

    If you are not all that inclined and need one badly, and cant afford someone to make you one (they go for around $3-400) make one out of hackles. I bought a Crazy Crow base, and 3 ounces of hackles (only needed two but they tend to cut up the strings) then just sew the hackles onto the base. You can have one done in an afternoon and the materials cost less than $50, plus its a unique thing for your outfit.

    I was worried how mine would be taken but i had a lot of other dancers and people ask me where I got my roach. When I told them I made it myself, they wanted one, so I was making them for around $100 (with dyed deertail)

    I believe in something I want to believe, not what someone wants me to believe.


    • #3
      Thanks for the input. The one I am using now was a gift from the Volker family given to my uncle, and then passed on down to me when I started dancing again last year. I danced for the first time since I was 8 or 9 years old, and took 20 years off. I was extremely nervous to dance again for the first time in so long, but it came naturally, kind of like riding a bike. The only part that wasn't natural was the weight that I had gained, and how fast you wear out compared to when I was a kid. So I have started running in hopes that it will give me a lot mor energy. I have ordered a roach from one of my fathers friends known on here as powwow bum I believe. I am so fortunate to have parents who have a lot of friends who put a lot of time and effort into my outfit. I will have to post pictures of it after the upcoming Tipton, Indiana Powwow this Laborday weekend!!! I still have a long ways to go, but I am determined to drop 50 lbs and become a respectable dancer. I am even making my girlfriend listen to my favorite Southern Thunder cd so I can memorize the beats!!!!




      • #4
        try biking if you own one, its less impact on the knees, and fancy dancing puts a lot of stress on them as it is anyway.

        I ride a bike every weekend, about 16 miles, and try to ride every other day about 4 1/2, but ride the short distance intensly, make it 20 minutes. This alone has helped me to control my weight and increase my energy. Running helps too, but if you are already a little overweight its gonna hurt your knees.

        I believe in something I want to believe, not what someone wants me to believe.


        • #5
          In Oklahoma and Texas, fancy dance roaches have been getting longer and longer. Most people I see now wear it to the middle of their neck bustle rosette. I prefer one shorter than that because I am afraid it will get hung up.
          I also took 20 years off, Chebon and will be starting back fancy dancing at my annual tribal pow wow next year. You are right, the steps come back almost immediately. As far as getting back into shape, here is what is working well for me. 1) Riding the stationary bike in your target cardio heart rate zone. This is the most efficient way I have found for gaining cardio fitness. 2) Jump rope. Good cardio (if you can keep your heart rate down) and makes you light on your feet. Also, quitting smoking helped tremendously. :) When I started first practicing about 6 months ago I could barely make it through an entire song. Now, I can make it through two to three without getting winded. Hope this helps.


          • #6

            I think it takes more than exercise alone to get back into shape/stay in shape. I dont know what I was doing wrong.

            1. I dont smoke or drink and I try to maintain a healthy diet, although I eat what gets served to my dad, and he is a stroke patient, so low on cholestrol and all of that. We get lots of fresh veggies and fruits, but not so much red meat. I love fish but dad hates it, so maybe only one of those every two weeks or so (unless I sneak out to the local diner and get my filling of fresh grouper)

            2. I would bike at least one 16 mile trip on the weekend, not leasuirly, but not face paced either. I would average it around an hour and a half, and at least 2 4 1/2 mile trips in the evening, at a cardio paced 20 minutes. Other than that I did no exercise. I would feel tired, but not exhausted at the end of these trips, and it has helped me to stand longer at work.

            Although I did all of that, my first fancy dance left me totally exhausted and almost unable to speak, but... It was a hot day out, probably around 90 or so, no shade to speak of, and the drum pulled out a medium quick song that went for 3 pushups, then went to the machine gun pace for 2 more.

            Maybe it was just the heat, because it cooled off during the night, and I was able to pull out a 4 pushup ruffle and follow it up with a crowhop.

            Last weekend was sort of the same situation, I was hard pressed to dance durning the heat of the day, and then the following night I did a 7 pushup ruffle, followed by a crow hop and two buffalo dances, then a two step (I lead)

            Anyone else out there have trouble with the heat like that?

            I believe in something I want to believe, not what someone wants me to believe.


            Join the online community forum celebrating Native American Culture, Pow Wows, tribes, music, art, and history.

            Related Topics


            • alumphfres
              Roach - Headgear Help
              by alumphfres
              Mitakuye oyasin

              For the last 10 years, I've always secured my roach with my warriors braid. Alas, got a haircut, no warriors braid or any braids for that matter. Need a link to resource(s) to adapt current roach to one with headband while I grow my mane back out.
              07-08-2004, 10:41 PM
            • Sonny Arm In Trout
              Roach attachment
              by Sonny Arm In Trout
              I have never worn a roach before. I am wanting to know how to attach the roach to the head. I know that it can be done using 2 scalp locks held with pins, but what about the German silver spreaders. Tell mw how this works? How is the feather attached to the spreader and how does the spreader stay...
              12-29-2002, 06:15 PM
            • pow-wow person
              head roach for tradish outfit
              by pow-wow person
              Trying to find out how to hook up a roach for a little northern traditional dancer, but have never done it before. We are using latigo for the spreader and two medicine bottles for the feathers, now what is an easy way to get it done? with details. The boy is only 2 years old so he still has short braids,...
              04-05-2008, 07:00 PM
            • doya dalonige
              Roach & Spreader
              by doya dalonige
              Okay, now this is going to sound silly or stupid to some of you. I've been Gourd dancing for about 20 years and now I'm getting into Straight dancing. After making most all my regalia myself I was ready to get a roach made to match my regalia. After a couple of years and ALOT of money ( I was scamed)...
              10-02-2008, 05:57 PM
            • Stoney
              Fancy dancer rocker & spreader
              by Stoney
              Hey all! I'm looking for some suggestions and ideas on making a rocker. I've made several but they just don't rock like I want them to. I want to make one that really jams back and forth. Any pictures will be appreciated.
              06-01-2005, 01:50 AM



            There are no results that meet this criteria.

            Sidebar Ad