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How to do basic waltz steps. (Men's and Women's parts)
How To Waltz
The waltz is the first dance most people think the might learn when they decide to learn to dance. Whether they want to dance for their wedding or just for a social event the waltz tends to the dance they start with.
Well here is some bad news: the waltz is a difficult dance: the social or rhythm foxtrot or rock and roll are definitely easier for most people. You want to know how to waltz so lets start with the basics.
The waltz, like other ballroom dances are danced in what is known as "closed hold". You get into a closed hold like this:
- The main offers his left hand to the lady while standing with his weight on his right foot;
- The woman approaches the man and gives him her right hand.
- The woman takes up position which is slightly offset to her left of the man.
- The proper hold is full body contact along the woman's right side - bu for a social dancer its fine not to be in full contact.
- The woman rests her left hand on the man's upper left arm as he places his right arm on he shoulder blade.
Waltz Timing and Movement
Waltz music has 3 beats to the bar. The dance moves around the floor in the anti-clockwise direction. Whatever else happens don't go in the wrong direction!
The man leads, the woman follows - my partner tells me this is non-negotiable, at least on the dance floor. The man is in charge of timing movement, choreography, the woman follows and enhances his movement. As the old saying goes: "Ginger Roges did everything that Fred Astaire did, backwards in high heels"
The Basic Waltz Steps
For brevity - I will give the man's steps: the woman does the opposite: man forward right - lady back right!
The first beat is the driving step, the man will normally start forward left foot.
The second step is right foot sideways - to the right
The third step the left foot closing to the right foot and lowering preparing to start forward right.
Over the three steps the man turns 1/4 turn.
The man steps forward again on beat one - forward right foot, side left, right foot closes to left foot and changes weight - see easy!
How to Learn to Dance
Written words are powerful things - but not when it comes to learning to dance. If you want to learn to dance; take a class either a group class or a private lesson with a teacher or with a partner and a teacher.
Its almost impossible to put into words all the nuances of even the first 6 steps of the waltz. I haven't even mentioned the rise and fall which gives the illusion that the dancers hover motionless - check out the video below for some excellent competitive dancers showing just how beautiful the waltz can be.
And get out there and give ballroom dancing a go - its the best intellectual and physical exercise you can have!
So check out your local town for ballroom dance classes in your area - if you live in my town you may find useful information at my Wellington Dance Classes website!
Waltz is the first dance shown
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