So, you’ve decided to throw a big party to commemorate a special occasion such as an anniversary or a graduation. In order to highlight the importance of the event, you’ve picked out a theme that centers around a certain style of dance. There’s just one catch: You don’t know anything about dancing in that style! Or maybe you’ve just received an invitation to attend a big party being thrown by a dear friend, and the theme for that event requires you to learn some new steps.
In either of these scenarios, you may find yourself fighting back a wave of dread or panic. After all, who has time to learn how to dance, even if it’s just a few steps at a party? However, in reality, you really can pick up the knowledge you need without any major fuss or inconvenience. Let’s look at some of the most important things you can do to make your preparation go as smoothly as possible.
Start With an Introductory Lesson
If you’re new to dancing, you may have no idea how to get the learning process started. For most people, the best option is an introductory lesson that lets you get your feet wet in a comfortable, safe environment specifically intended for beginners. Some dance studios offer steep discounts for their introductory sessions, so you don’t need to spend a lot of money up front.
In a well-designed introductory course, you can choose a basic dance style category (e.g., Swing and Rhythm dances or Country Western dances), then focus on two or three dances within that category. The emphasis here is on the basic elements of the dances you select. Instead of going into an overwhelming amount of detail, the lessons should show you the most fundamental moves, as well as a couple of step patterns based on those moves.
Pick a Dance Style
If you’re throwing a party, you get the chance to determine all aspects of its theme, including the type of dances to expect. If you’re attending a party, the host of the event may pick a single style or several styles as part of the overall theme. In either case, you’ll want to focus on certain dances to learn during your lessons.
A top-notch instruction studio will have staff members trained in a variety of popular styles. In addition to Country Western Dances (e.g., the Texas Two-Step or the Country Swing) and Swing and Rhythm dances (e.g., the Jitterbug or the East Coast Swing), potential styles for your party or special event include Latin dances such as the Salsa and Cha Cha. You may even opt for a classic ballroom dance such as the Waltz or the Foxtrot.
Choose a Qualified Instructor
Anybody can rent a space, set up a website and call themselves dance instructors. However, it reality, it takes talent and years of dedication to completely master the ins and outs of even a single dance style. It also takes training and skill to learn how to convey all of that knowledge to beginning students in a fun, relaxed manner that builds confidence in the process and encourages participation. Even if you just want to learn a few steps for an upcoming event or party, you’ll want to make sure that your instructor is a qualified dance teacher. You’ll also want to make sure that your instructor is knowledgeable about the specific style you wish to learn.
So, how do you determine whether or not a prospective instructor has the training and experience you need? The best course of action is to find a dance studio with an established reputation for professionalism and instructional excellence. As a rule, this type of studio will only hire teachers who truly know how to dance, and also know how to show others how to dance. In addition, a top-quality dance studio will employ an instruction staff that’s well-versed in all popular dance styles.
Focus on the Basics
Let’s face it, learning how to dance can seem like an overwhelming prospect, even if you just want to pick up a few steps so you’ll look good at your party or event. This may be especially true if you consider yourself ungraceful. Even if you feel more comfortable with your body, two important considerations will probably loom in your mind: where to begin and how to begin.
First, it’s important to note that almost anybody can dance if they receive proper instruction in a relaxed setting. The key is to focus on the basics of any dance style you want to learn. You may want to turn to a friend who can dance for assistance. However, while it may seem paradoxical, only someone who really understands the mechanics of dance can reliably separate the most basic steps from advanced steps that are currently beyond your ability. By emphasizing the essentials, a qualified instructor can get you up to speed with a minimum of confusion and frustration.
Give Yourself Time to Learn
Chances are, you have a lot more things on your mind besides your upcoming party. As the date of the event approaches, you may find yourself squeezed for time when it comes to arranging and attending dance lessons. Still, if at all possible, it’s better to give yourself plenty of time to learn at a comfortable pace that provides you with the skills you need while keeping your anxiety levels at a minimum.
The dance studio you choose can have a big impact on your ability to properly plan your lessons. If the studio only has a small instruction staff, they may find it difficult to accommodate you, particularly if you need to fit your sessions into a narrow timeframe. A smaller studio may also teach only a limited selection of dance styles. On the other hand, studios with larger staffs may have an easier time fitting you into their slate of classes, even if you can only take lessons during certain parts of the day or evening. In addition they may offer instruction in a larger number of styles, including styles you find particularly appealing.
You’ll Be Dancing Soon!
If you follow these few essential tips, you should find it fairly easy to learn the steps you need for your upcoming party. With just a bit of luck, when the day arrives, you’ll have your new moves all ready to show off for your friends and family. From that point on, it’s time to have some fun!
Steve Platt is the proud owner of five Arthur Murray franchises including Arthur Murray Riverside. Do you want to get motivated? Go to your PC and print out calendars 2016. Then, write out some goals of what you want to do with your life. Write in goal dates of when you want to take your first dance lesson, perform your first routine, and compete in your first competition. Plan your weight and exercise goals.Write it down, make a plan, then inch-by-inch it will be a cinch!