How to ballroom dancing

How To Ballroom Dance For Beginners (Videos)

Ballroom dancing is one of the classiest types of formal dancing and it includes 20+ different dances.

In this guide you’ll learn how to Ballroom dance for beginners with 3 videos (below).

But first a quick intro…

There are the traditional Ballroom dances which include: Waltz, Foxtrot, Viennese Waltz, Tango, Quickstep and more.

And then there are what are considered Latin-Ballroom dances which include: Cha Cha, Rumba, Swing, Bolero, Mambo, Salsa, Jive, Samba and more.

I’m a Beginner, Which dances should I start with?

Our recommendation is to learn the basic steps of these 3 dances: The Slow Waltz, Rumba and Cha Cha.

These 3 dances are great because they fit most of the popular music. Read more about the best social dances to learn here.

But wait, before you start learning the Ballroom basic steps below, you need to know how to take hold with your partner.

First, Learn The Ballroom Dance Hold

In this video we explain how to achieve what is referred to as “The Closed Hold” in Ballroom dancing:

The main points are:
● Leader’s left hand connects to Follower’s right hand, and held at Follower’s eye level.
● Leader’s right hand is placed just underneath the lady’s left shoulder blade area.
● Followers place their left arm on the man’s shoulder area, and press down slightly to connect with the leader’s right arm.
● When doing a strictly Ballroom dance you will have less space between you – and more space during the Latin-Ballroom dances.
● Keep your core engaged at all times for better balance and to feel your partner’s weight.

Next, Ballroom Dance Steps (Learn The Basics)

1st of 3: Learn The Slow Waltz Basics

The slow Waltz is beautiful dance with emphasize on smooth gliding across the floor with rise and fall technique (going up and down). The main characteristic of this dance is the iconic timing of 1,2,3. Learn the basic step below.

The Waltz basic steps (The Box Step):

Breakdown of Waltz steps:

Men’s steps:
Forward with Left Foot
Side with Right Foot
Close Left Foot to Right Foot (And Switch Weight)

Back with Right Foot
Side with Left Foot
Close Right Foot to Left Foot (And Switch Weight)

Lady’s steps:
Back with Right Foot
Side with Left Foot
Close Right Foot to Left Foot (And Switch Weight)

Forward with Left Foot
Side with Right Foot
Close Left Foot to Right Foot (And Switch Weight)

Related: More on How Waltz dance here.

2nd of 3: Learn The Rumba Basic Steps

The American Style Rumba is one of the most social friendly Ballroom dances. The basic step is a also a box step (Just like the Waltz) but the difference here is that there is no up and down motion, instead dancers use what is called Cuban Motion technique – where the dancers bend and straighten their knees on every step – producing a hip action.

Rumba Basic Steps (The Box Step):

Breakdown of Rumba steps:

Men’s steps:
Forward with Left Foot
Side with Right Foot
Close Left Foot to Right Foot (And Switch Weight)

Back with Right Foot
Side with Left Foot
Close Right Foot to Left Foot (And Switch Weight)

Lady’s steps:
Back with Right Foot
Side with Left Foot
Close Right Foot to Left Foot (And Switch Weight)

Forward with Left Foot
Side with Right Foot
Close Left Foot to Right Foot (And Switch Weight)

Related: More on Rumba dance steps here.

3rd of 3: Learn The Cha Cha Basic Steps

The Cha Cha dance is a very lively and fast dance. It’s a dance that has lots of quick footwork and hip actions – with emphasize on the rhythm. The main characteristic of this dance is the triple step chasses which are present through out the entire dance.

Cha Cha Basic Steps (The Side Basic Step):

Breakdown of Cha Cha steps:

Men’s steps:
Side with Left Foot
Back with Right Foot
Replace weight Forward on Left Foot
Side With Right Foot
Close Left Foot To Right Foot (Switch weight)
Side With Right Foot
Forward with Left Foot (Check action)
Replace weight Back on Right Foot
Side with Left Foot
Close Right Foot to Left Foot

Lady’s steps:
Side With Right Foot
Forward with Left Foot (Check action)
Replace weight Back on Right Foot
Side with Left Foot
Close Right Foot to Left Foot
Side with Left Foot
Back with Right Foot
Replace weight Forward on Left Foot
Side With Right Foot
Close Left Foot To Right Foot (Switch weight)

Related: More on Cha Cha dance here.

Other Dances To Learn

The following 5 dances are also great for anyone looking to expand on their Ballroom dancing learning (They are also taught in our membership). Click on them to learn them:

Learn East Coast Swing Moves
The East coast swing is a dance that originated from Lindy Hop and has lots of turn and spins. The leaders and followers both do rock steps and triple side steps through-out this dance, with bending and straightening the knees.

Learn Foxtrot basic steps
The Foxtrot is a great Ballroom dance to use to get around the rooms and at weddings and Ballroom dance parties. This is one of the easiest dances to learn because it involves 2 walks and side steps for both partners. It is a classy dance that fits may of the Frank Sinatra and Michael Bubble music.

Learn Bachata dance steps
The Bachata is a sensual Latin dance and is a perfect dance to do socially for couples. The basic steps involve side to side stepping, with the 4th and 8th steps done as taps (without change of weight). This move is great to do at Latin dance clubs and parties.

Learn Salsa basic steps
Salsa is one of the hottest Latin dances right now and it fits many of the Reggaeton music played at clubs and parties. The Salsa basic steps consist of fwd and back rock steps and aside from that many of the moves include: spins, underarm turns, hip actions and dips.

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How To Ballroom Dance For Beginners

Learn how to Ballroom dance with our step by step Latin and Ballroom dance lessons online.

Our videos will break everything to make sure you know your steps, timing and technique.

Below you will find free Basic Ballroom dance steps for beginners for Cha Cha, Rumba, Salsa, Swing, Tango, Foxtrot, Waltz and Merengue. In each mini course you will learn the most essential basic steps with HD videos.

How to Ballroom dance for beginners - Free Video Courses:

How to dance with a partner 101 - Social dance steps
Get introduced to social dance steps in this free mini course. Learn how to social dance with 3 Ballroom dances: Rumba basic, Swing basic and Waltz basic. These dances are perfect for partner dancing at weddings and parties. Perfect for beginners looking to get started.

Waltz dance steps for beginners
The slow Waltz is one of the most classical Ballroom dances - dating back to 16th century when they used to hold "Balls". The Waltz's main characteristic is the rise and fall used through out all the steps. Our videos will teach you the most basic Waltz steps with ease.

Cha Cha dance steps for beginners
This cheeky dance is perfect for anyone starting out. This Ballroom dance has a lot of quick and sharp foot and leg movements. It is characterized by a triple step which is danced on the "Cha Cha 1" counts. In this video course you will learn 3 beginner dance steps that you will be able to use right away.

Swing dance steps for beginners (East coast Swing)
The East coast Swing combines rocks steps and triple steps to create a very fun and energetic dance. This dance is influenced by rock n roll and Lindy hop styles - which give it tons of variations including kicks, flicks and turns. Have some fun with the swing now!

Rumba dance steps for beginners
The Rumba combines lots of body, hip and arm movements to make this Cuban dance very expressive. In this mini course you will learn the basic steps, box step and slow underarm turn. This dance requires lots of control because of its rhythm - Slow, Quick, Quick. Learn the basic steps with our videos in this beginner course.

Salsa dance steps for beginners
This popular Latin dance is perfect for those of you who like to fast rhythms and lots of turns and spins. This dance is a great for social dancing with its emphasize on lead and follow - where the man initiates movements and the lady follows. After our mini course you'll be able to use what you learned in Latin clubs.

Foxtrot dance steps for beginners
One of the first Ballroom dances that people usually learn is the Foxtrot. It is a very elegant dance that travels around the room. Both men and women push off the standing leg in order to move from foot to foot. This dance is one of the best for pure lead and follow.

Tango dance lessons online for beginners
This Ballroom dance is great for passionate dancers who like to express the Tango music. This is a traveling Ballroom dance that combines a lot of shapes and rotational movements. In our mini course you will learn 3 beginner moves to get you started. Enjoy.

Merengue dance steps for beginners
Here is a Latin dance that is considered to be the easiest of all! The saying goes: "If you can walk, you can Merengue". The basic steps all consist of small weight changes that could be danced on the spot, or across the floor. There are lots of intricate turns and arm twists too.

Want More Latin & Ballroom Lessons?

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Become a member at and get access to 300+ video lessons teaching you Latin and Ballroom dancing (American & International Style).

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where to start the journey into the world of beauty

Once upon a time, ballroom dancing was taught from an early age, not knowing how to waltz was considered shameful. Today, the classics are back, the ability to dance will come in handy at the reception, and at a romantic date, and at a wedding.

Which of the girls in childhood did not dream of sliding along the parquet in a waltz, like Cinderella or Natasha Rostova? The era of balls has passed, but there is always the opportunity to feel like a princess. And this is not a fairy tale, not a fantasy, but ballroom dancing, where to start learning depends on your preparation, age and place of residence, but desire should always come first! Plunge into the world of charm and you will see how life will be filled with new notes.

  1. Dance history
  2. There are no old couples - there are seniors
  3. What is needed for classes

Dance history

Ballroom dancing, according to the classical definition, must be paired. A man and a woman communicate in the language of movements: either passionately and passionately, as in the Latin American rumba and samba, or stiffly and coldly - in the European standard.

The familiar term "ballroom" came from medieval Europe, where it referred to non-professional secular dances. And only in the twentieth century did dances with African and Latin American roots penetrate into the ballroom group.

In 1920 in England ballroom dancing turned from a pleasant pastime into competitive dancing. It was then that, at the official level, the Ballroom Dancing Council divided them into groups: sports, in which contests and competitions are held, and social ones. Until 1950, five Latin American dances were gradually added to the European fast and slow waltzes, foxtrot and tango.

Since then, two directions, two competitive programs have been actively developing: European and Latin American. And to this day they are the base in the training of dancers.

There are no old couples - there are seniors

You can start dancing at any age. Of course, you can become a professional provided that you got into this sport in early childhood. However, as in sports, there are Olympic champions, and there are those who practice for themselves, for the soul. In this case, the main thing is desire. If you want to dance, dance!

If you live in the city, contact the Palace of Culture, clubs, fitness centers. Surely there are several different studios, sections in which lovers of waltzing are engaged. Groups in them, as well as in competitions, are divided by age.

Children start dancing at the age of 4-5, and this group corresponds to the standard "Children 0". And the “oldest” ones dance in the “Seniors 4” group, in which the youngest partner is 80 years old or more. There are twelve age groups in total.

Of course, it's great if you have a training partner. Its absence is most often the stumbling block, due to which the impulses of the soul remain unfulfilled. Good dance schools will help you find a partner, or they will offer you to study with specially invited professionals. Most likely, this service, like others, is not free.

By the way, ballroom dancing is expensive. Gorgeous concert costumes, professional shoes, well-groomed appearance, chic hairstyles and makeup - all this takes time, effort and money. But it's worth it.

An indescribable feeling when in an exquisite ball gown emphasizing femininity and fragility, you slide along the parquet to the enchanting sounds of a waltz. Or you “light up” in the jive, completely surrendering to the rhythm and pressure of the music.

What you need to practice

So, if you want to practice ballroom dancing for the soul, you first need to find a dance school. Next, you will need shoes with a medium stable heel. Of the clothes in training, it is better to have not trousers, but a classic short skirt and a light, tight T-shirt. Even at rehearsals, you should feel like a lady, and your partner - a man. For concerts, if any, dresses can be borrowed from the wardrobe of clubs, theaters, or rented.

Another thing is if you live in a small village, town, where there is not even a dance club. No problem. Buy or download video tutorials and practice on your own at home. Involve your friends in this, it will be more fun.

Of course, in a small room, in an apartment, it is difficult to perform a full-fledged waltz tour, but the Latin American program is danced practically on the spot. And "Cha-cha-cha" or "Jive" is a great solution if there is no pair.

Thanks to ballroom dancing, like oriental dancing, plasticity, a sense of rhythm, and self-confidence develop. Even walking will be different. Reminds me of the Dirty Dancing movies. Here is an example of how non-professionals became the stars of the dance floor due to their desire to dance.

Start by learning the simplest movements. Mandatory warm-up, then learning individual elements. And you combine everything into a single complex of movements, the dance itself.

By the way, competitions have strict rules regarding “access” to program movements. Some elements are allowed to be included in your program only when you are at a certain level according to the classification of dancers. The same goes for performance clothing. For violations in appearance at competitions, points can be deducted.

If possible, be sure to attend contests and competitions where you can watch the performances of professionals. Often at such meetings, master classes are held for amateurs with learning various elements, they talk about new trends. The teaching staff is also trained.

Ballroom dancing is a noble sport and art at the same time. This is a story of the relationship between two people, told through gestures, body plastics and, of course, music. Perhaps this is your calling, and you will expand your capabilities over time, for example, master incomparable dances with dogs.

Ballroom dancing for adults

Ballroom dancing is the most beautiful sport on the planet!
If you have seen ballroom dancing competitions, then you will surely remember the luxurious outfits, the proud posture of the dancers, the perfection of movements and lines. The swift and intricate steps are breathtaking, and the harmony and coordination of the movements of the partner and the partner demonstrate real feelings, from tender romance to hot passion.
10 beautiful ballroom dances, and each has its own character, its own rhythm, its own mood and its own music.
“I also want to be able to do this,” you think. But alas, often it remains only in your dreams. And the reason for this is the various fears that torment the beginner. Let's discuss the most common fears that beginner dancers have.

Maria Makhotko — teacher of the studio

To dance like that, one had to start dancing since childhood

Multiple world champion Carmen Vincelli started dancing at the age of 17. Dancers who come to ballroom sports at the age of 30 have time, if they wish, to reach high sports (B-A) classes. For amateur dancing, there are no restrictions at all!
Of course, those who have been dancing since childhood have an advantage over dancers who started dancing at a more mature age, but they also achieve excellent results.
Did you know that a sports career in ballroom dancing is available for any age, because competitions are held not only for youth and children, but also for adults (up to 35 years old), for seniors (35-45, 45-55, 55-65 years), and for almost all levels of training?
And, of course, you can learn to dance beautifully not by competing in competitions, but by performing demonstration numbers at festivals, holidays, parties and simply enjoying dancing.

I don't have a partner or partner

Now imagine that your potential partner/partner somewhere also dreams of dancing and is hesitant to start for the same reason! How do you meet?
In fact, only 20% of beginner dancers come to class immediately with a couple, and most start alone and find a couple already in class. It's much more real than you think.
Do you know that you can start working productively on your own? Working on individual technique is an integral and significant part of the learning process. To be able to move in pairs, everyone must know their game and have certain technical developments. This is what you need to do until you have a pair! It is much easier for a dancing partner or partner to find a couple, because you already know how to do something!

Ballroom dancing is expensive

Yes, it's expensive.
If you want to become an athlete, perform at competitions and win prizes, you will need to pay for individual lessons, buy or sew expensive competitive costumes for yourself, allocate time and effort for almost daily training. Ballroom dancing is a luxury sport.
If you want to dance for yourself, for your own pleasure, then everything will be much easier and cheaper. It is enough to pay for inexpensive group lessons.

I will look ridiculous in the ballroom, everyone will laugh at me

Do you have delusions of grandeur? )
In the dance school, whose walls have been seen by thousands of beginner dancers, it is very difficult to make someone laugh with the first steps. You don't know how to dance and that's why you came to class. It's not funny, it's normal.

Men don't dance

That's right, gentlemen dance ballroom dancing.

I'm fat/fat, tall/tall, short/short

If you define your weight as overweight, dancing won't last long. Sports ballroom dancing perfectly polish the figure and strengthen muscles, improve posture and generally change a person both externally and internally.
If you think that you have an unsuitable height for dancing, then know that your future partner or partner is sure to have the same thoughts somewhere. After all, high / low growth occurs in both women and men. The main thing is that you feel comfortable as a couple, the rest is trifles!

Friends! Down with these ridiculous fears, you will succeed. We look forward to seeing you in class to share our knowledge and good mood with you. It's time for your dancing dream to come true, start dancing today!
After all, in ballroom dancing the most difficult thing is to take the first step!

I do ballroom dancing in a group of beginners (teacher - Sergey Alekseev). There are a few things that make me very happy.
Firstly, classes begin with a very good warm-up. My work is sedentary, so a vigorous warm-up perfectly “shakes up”.
Secondly, the classes themselves are held in a very friendly atmosphere.
Sergey has infinite patience, he explains very clearly, and even if it is still not clear, he explains differently.
In addition, we do not just perform some movements, but a certain bundle is formed. Doable at every level of our capabilities.

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