How to become a good hip hop dancer without lessons
How to get started learning hip-hop without classes — Dance, Work, Balance
Professional dancers can all agree: there is no substitute for taking dance classes. But between the closing of studios due to the COVID pandemic or the need to save money for other higher priority expenses, you may be looking for ways to get started in your hip-hop dance training without paying for classes. Here are 3 simple things you can do starting today to give you a head start in dance before the studios reopen.
At the dance studio, when taking a hip hop class, you benefit in many ways: direct feedback from the instructor, the benefit of connecting with others in the class, learning the experience of a professional audition, and of course, the facilities (since dance studios come equipped with mirrors and nice floors, although you can easily set up your own home dance studio.)
But let’s say you’re just getting started in dancing hip-hop with no intent to become professional. Maybe you are still young, still in school, or just looking to get some physical exercise or learn about the culture. What should you do to get started in learning hip hop dance without classes?
Use the free resources available to you.
At the risk of sounding old, let me just remind everyone that the world’s knowledge can be accessed by your smartphone. What this means for you is that you can access practically every aspect of hip hop dance, from terminology and history to choreography tutorials and freestyle battles using this handheld device that fits in your pocket. (Back when I wanted to watch some dance, I’d either have to wait for the right show to come on TV, buy / rent a VHS, or fly all the way to NYC just to watch the street corner pop off.)
Simply put, you have tremendous access to any style of dance you want to learn about. Steezy is a great YouTube channel with tons of free content and highly reputable instructors. This is a wonderful jumping off point. From there, find someone whose style you enjoy learning or watching, then search that name on YouTube. Choreographers nowadays are very aware of their presence on social media, so you should be able to find several videos of your favorite choreographers and dancers.
Once you’ve found your favorites, watch and copy their moves. This will help you build up your “dance vocabulary.” Slow down their videos with the build in feature in the YouTube browser, and try and figure out what they are doing. I rewound my VHS tapes so many times until they became nearly unplayable - simply clicking on YouTube is a huge improvement in technology over these past 25 years!
The added bonus of YouTube: You may even digitally wander off and learn about some completely new dance styles!
Without a doubt, most of the content you’ll see isn’t great. But some of it is. Your goal is to find the dancers who resonate best with your movement and the way you see yourself dancing in the future. The range in quality is just the same when taking dance classes at a studio: some instructors are better equipped to teach than others. Until you can get back into the studio, take in all you can via the magic of YouTube, and learn from multiple sources. You’ll gain a better understanding of what works for you and what doesn’t.
Build the habit of dancing daily.
Dancers develop a particular set of muscles, just as other athletes do. As such, it is important to keep these muscles active and toned - not just physically, but also mentally. And the best way to stay in shape is to use those muscles regularly.
Start by committing yourself to 10 minutes of practice or training each day. After about a week, this time will feel very short. Keep adding time devoted to working on dance. For example, you may choose to watch your favorite choreography performance on YouTube, then spend 30 minutes deconstructing their dance and replicating their moves in your own dance space.
I used to dance for a couple hours a day, with a minimum of “forced” time of 20 minutes. Whenever I injured my knee or ankle, I would stay seated and focus on upper body techniques, like hits and arm waves. Even when I was sick with the flu, I would just focus on visualizing myself dancing, a very important aspect of training!
The key reason why this should become a habit is to prepare yourself for when classes reopen. There are good habits that will take you far as a dancer, and regular rehearsal and discipline is one of the best. This is a skill that comes from and is mastered from within, and is only peripheral during studio time.
Watch, encourage, but also critique yourself.
Of the three steps, this is mentally the most draining. Have you ever heard a recording of your own voice, then realized how much you hate your voice? It’s just as bad with video - but it’s potentially your biggest source of growth without taking class.
In a studio, the teacher’s job is to help you gain skills. In beginners classes, they give you the skills of how to mimic their movements - where to place your hand in the six step, how to shift your body weight in top rock, and so on. But when you are learning at home, you have to figure it out by trial and error. What works and what doesn’t work? Just as importantly, what looked good and what didn’t?
A set of mirrors in your home dance studio is a great starting place, but that instant feedback will only take you so far. You’ll really want to make a video of yourself. Grab a tripod, point your phone camera at yourself, then spend 10 minutes practicing your six step.
Here comes the tough part - watch all of it. Fight the urge to skip over the parts that are cringe, because they are cringe for your potential audience as well. It’s a painful exercise, but I promise it’ll show you what you need to know. Do you slow down at certain points? Focus on making those parts more fluid. Does your body look awkward? Figure out how to get your elbow out of that weird place.
But the last step is just as important: compliment yourself. Point out what you did right, even if it means you have to dig really hard. Is your understanding of the musicality great? Does your top rock have a really nice groove to it, even if your down rock is a bit sloppy?
This is the question you really want to answer: Was I better than I was yesterday? Hopefully, yes.
Soon enough, the studios will reopen and we can all go back to finding our favorite local dance studio and teachers. In the mean time, keep these three tips in mind, and you’ll be in great shape for when that day arrives.
How To Learn Dance With No Dance Classes In Your Area
Many dancers or aspiring dancers live in areas where there are no dance classes, studios, nor communities. If this is you, please don’t be deterred you from starting!
Where there is a will, there is always a way! You can start dancing on your own by making the most of the resources that you do have.
Keep reading to learn how to start learning how to dance – wherever you live.
No dance classes? No problem.
1. Define what type of dance you’re interested in
First, narrow down your scope of interests to a style or a few styles that resonate with you most.
There are so many different dance styles and each have different methods for learning and practicing it.
For example, are you interested in the robotic, eye-tricking motions of Popping? Do you like the athleticism and flair of Breakin’?
Are you drawn to grooving out to old school hip hop music? Are you looking to learn and perform choreographed pieces, like in Urban Dance Choreography?
Think about. Take a second. THEN –
2. Do background research
Once you’ve narrowed it down to one or two, look for online resources that can give you some deeper insight on the style.
For instance, if you want to learn Popping, read up on its history, origins, and basic techniques (the hit is a great place to start).
Test it out with these exercises recommended by Charles Nguyen (from Kinjaz and Poreotics) here.
For you hip hop heads, brush up on where the culture comes from in this article.
Those wanting to get into the Urban Dance world, read this article on what it actually is, and watch videos on YouTube from your favorite choreographers.
3. Find ways to learn online
As you learn more about these different dance styles and cultures, you’ll also gain a better sense of the techniques and key moves that make up the style.
Since you can’t get to a physical studio with teachers who teach that specific style, look up online learning platforms that can teach you the ABC’s – for examples, aspiring Poppers, try Boogie Frantick’s Beginner Popping Program on STEEZY Studio.
For Breakin’ heads, B-Boy and B-Girl Dojo provide an interactive, immersive Breakin’ program that teaches moves, techniques, battle skills, and more.
VincaniTV also has great tutorials on Breaking and Hip Hop styles.
There are some awesome YouTube tutorials on basic House steps by Jardy Santiago, too!
Other online dance classes:
DanceTutorialsLIVE offers tutorials in everything from Twerking to the Dougie.
The amazing Matt Steffanina teaches the hypest pieces to the most popular current music on his YouTube channel.
You can learn from Korea’s best choeographers with 1MILLION Dance Tutorial.
And of course, STEEZY Studio has over 90 online classes where you can learn advanced Urban Choreography pieces, grooves, beginner choreography, and more.
Curious to see how it works? This’ll tell you everything: How To Use STEEZY Studio
4. Get your friends together to practice
If you have friends who are also interested in learning how to dance, then get them together and try out one of these online classes.
Or, freestyle and practice drills together.
Set a weekly day/time to get together and practice at a park, your garage, front lawn, even in your living room.
Even if it’s just 1 other person, having someone share that experience with you creates a sense of community (yes, a community of 2 is still a community!)
5. Commute to take live classes
Yes, it’s kind of a mission to take 2 trains, a bus, and walk 3 miles to get to a studio…
But commuting to take a in-real-life class once in a while is worth it!
You get to be in an environment made for optimal dance training, around other dancers who are trying to learn and grow, and receive instruction from a professional teacher!
You can learn tons of skills online, on your own, from your home…
But nothing can replace a real-life experience, just like how FaceTime can’t replace face to face hangouts.
So save up some money and block out a chunk of your time to experience in-person classes.
Treat it as a vacation, if anything, where you get to indulge heavily in your passion.
While it may take a bit of extra effort, don’t take the fact that there are no dance classes in your area as a handicap.
If anything, you can receive instruction in other ways and supplement your training in ways that best cater to you.
Also, being more self-taught allows for room for you to dance like you, without being too influenced by a particular instructor or regular set of students.
Take advantage of all the resources out there, as well as the freedom to develop your own unique style.
Let’s keep growing together, STEEZY Nation!
Do you have a hard time getting to a dance class? What are some ways you train? Comment and share your advice!
How to become a dancer who does not interfere with anything?
Who is a dancer? A person who moves his arms and legs to the beat of music or his own internal rhythm is the simplest definition. From the point of view of art, the body is the same instrument as the cello or violin. This instrument expresses emotions, feelings and moods. Dancing is no less an art than wielding a brush. The harmonious unity of the mind, soul and body is important here.
Someone thinks that the ability to dance is an innate talent sent from above. This is not always the case, everyone can become a dancer. Anyone who loves music, who enjoys moving to it, is in fact already a dancer, in the broadest sense of the word. However, to become a truly professional dancer, you need aspiration, desire and perseverance.
As a rule, the title of a professional is given to someone who has studied several years in a dance class. Behind him are more than a dozen performances on stage, knowledge of the names of all dance movements and a pack of costumes on hangers.
When it comes to street dancing style, the academic school will not help here. A professional on the street is the one who dances the best in the area. Many people ask: how to become a street dancer? Only one way: watch and repeat. Watch how they do, what they do, what kind of music. Repeat at home in front of the mirror, over and over, until the result is satisfactory. The style of street dancing has long been on the stage, and you can learn it in studios with teachers. Of course, even when working in the studio, you cannot do without repetitions at home. You need to constantly hone your movements.
Success in the art of dancing directly depends on the goals set. Some want to dance professionally in the styles of Hip-Hop or Go-Go, others strive for a professional career in ballroom dancing, and others have long dreamed of participating in dance theater productions. People who from the very beginning wonder how to become a professional dancer often become the leading choreographers and art directors of their own dance studios.
Where to get knowledge to achieve your goals? We have already talked about the method of observation and self-study, as well as classes in dance circles. Another way to learn is to participate in master classes by visiting specialists and dance competitions. Any professional activity, including dancing, requires the intervention of experienced teachers. Dance competitions will help you get the necessary criticisms and tips to improve your technique. Naturally, one must be prepared for disappointments. But not a single remark should stop a true dancer on the way to his goal.
When a person thinks about how to become a good dancer, he thinks about how to acquire technique and refinement of movements, while forgetting about personal qualities. But they are no less important than the baggage of knowledge and experience gained. A lot is decided by the energy and charisma of the author of the issue. Does he have a talent, or does he mechanically repeat the learned movements? Is he lethargic or does his temperament make him get up from his chair and give a standing ovation? It is personal qualities that sound the very final chord that affects success.
Along the way, in the world of dance, physical abilities are improved, as well as spiritual traits of a person's character. Success in this field can boost self-confidence.
When deciding which events to go to and how to become a dancer, the main thing to remember is that you should like the dance style. The body should literally "tear to dance" with the sounds of salsa or flamenco. Dance revives energy and mood. After all, it is not without reason that there is an opinion that dance is life.
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12 life hacks to quickly learn how to dance from Mamita Dance
Author: Pavel Sobiray
psychologist, teacher of salsa and tango
Author: Pavel Sobiray
psychologist, teacher of salsa and tango
This is the most common story of those who believe that the mere act of attending a pair dance class is enough to learn how to dance.
Absolutely not. If you want to really dance well, you have to make an effort outside of the dance class. A good teacher will definitely be needed, but the initiative should be on your side.
1. Listen to music
The most common and accessible advice that is given already in the first lessons. And it definitely works. Music creates a certain atmosphere of the dance and intuitively you want to move to it. It doesn't matter where you listen to music - in the car, on headphones while walking or doing household chores.
An addition that will help you dance better is your active participation in the music. Sing along, dance or simply beat musical accents with any free parts of the body. In the subway, for example, it is enough to tap out bright moments with your fingers, in the car to sing along with sounds, and at home you can jump for pleasure.
2. Watch videos of good dancers
It's complicated, but also obvious. It’s more difficult, because without recommendations from more experienced dancers, unfortunately, it’s not so easy to find a good quality video on the net (I mean not the resolution quality, but the content itself).
Meaningful video viewing is about building an understanding of HOW dancers make a particular impression on a partner or viewer. Technology is at the heart of everything. Understanding how the pros do it is a big step forward.
It is important to distinguish a show from a disco dance, a staged performance from an improvisation, a stylized dance from an authentic one, etc. Ask for recommendations and dance teachers will always throw off a couple of videos of worthy landmarks.
Tango Z. Showreel.
Online modern tango courses
Tango nuevo is the most advanced version of tango. We can quickly learn to dance from zero to a steep level.
3. Dance in salsatecas/milongas/discotheques
A very delicate moment when it is worth coming to the first party. From a technical point of view, most students in 1-3 months have a sufficient set of figures and techniques to come and dance calmly. Psychologically, the same moment can be stretched out for an indefinite time. After all, it is imperative to “not lose face”, “learn more figures” and be sure what to do in case “there is an unfamiliar movement”.
In fact, the partygoers don't really care (except for a small layer of non-professional teachers who want to help inexperienced dancers by treating them as customers in the future). It is important to come and try dancing after a month of classes. You can only with friends or guys from your group. This will be enough to feel the adrenaline and inspiration from the dance.
4. Dance with partners or partners not of your level
The conventional wisdom that you need to practice in groups of your level does not stand up to the test of experience. Perhaps now your eyes widened in surprise, and you want to meaningfully read the phrase again. Yes, you saw everything correctly: when you dance with a partner of your level, you don’t grow anywhere.
It's important to understand that not only does it work one way and you have to dance with cooler dancers, but it works even more effectively the other way. It is no coincidence that teaching pair dances dramatically raises the level of the teacher himself. You have an endless stream of very beginner dancers.
How it works. A more experienced partner needs to be "stretched". It's easy and obvious. With beginners, you need to take more initiative on yourself, see the general pattern of the dance more widely, turn on and insure more, try to be an example and be more careful. The quality of interaction begins to grow significantly. And wonderful partners too.
Dancing with partners of your level doesn't make you grow. Dance with both beginners and more advanced dancers
Dominican Bachata Women's Style Online Course
Want to learn how to hypnotize those around you with the most appetizing part of your body? On the course we will tell you all the secrets.
5. Learn to dance for a partner and for a partner
Turks and Argentines are one of the best partners in the world. In Russia, partners are highly valued. Why? The answer is simple. In Argentina and Turkey, it is not questionable for men to ask another man to lead in one piece or another and give feedback on the quality of the lead. For them, it will be a great shame to hear moralizing from a partner, or even more so to be known in the community as an insecure partner.
In Russia, due to the constant, often far-fetched, opinion that there are more women in pair dances, partners calmly get up and study their partner's part. Such partners then grow into very cool dancers and teachers. In no case do this at parties, only in class. Here we are talking only about the learning strategy. At parties, be yourself.
6. Do not memorize the links
Always try to look deeper and understand the through principle and idea of movement. Understanding what and how is done will make it possible to independently generate any sequences and chips.
Human memory is limited and there will always be a moment when something will escape and your repertoire will be limited by the size of RAM.
In Argentine tango, for example, there are seven levels of movement construction that, when mastered, will allow you to make millions of combinations. And how many dance sequences can you really remember? In rueda, more than 150 figures dance in a rare circle. It's hard to keep more in mind.
7. Develop your body
Many years of experience in teaching pair dances shows that as soon as everyone pairs up in a class, any progress in individual style ends. But it is the individual style that distinguishes everyone at the disco: partners change, and style is always with you.
The body as the main instrument of dance must be very plastic, responsive and emotional. Surprisingly, not all pair dance schools have a general physical warm-up. It is vital to tune the body and understand how it works.
You can always train extra and concentrate more on the basic steps, as their true value is as body work. The sequence of steps is, in fact, the simplest thing that can be in pair dancing. The quality of individual performance determines the craftsmanship.
8. Try on the images of inspiring dancers
A psychological life hack for those who have already mastered the steps, but still feel that there is not enough brightness and drive. Most are terribly afraid of being someone else's "clone". Here the action is the same as under the influence of hypnosis - the more you resist, the more you plunge into an altered state of consciousness.
With a high degree of probability, you are already dancing like someone else's "clone". A meaningful fitting of someone else's image is that you mentally take the image of the one who inspires you (inspiration is critical in this case) and "put on" yourself. Then you start dancing and trying to feel in general how it is to be able, for example, to be the best partner or the sexiest partner in a disco. This is much more difficult than it seems. But it works extremely efficiently.
9. Dance to offbeat music
Habitual rhythms keep you tight. Tango salon or speedy timba leave little room for experimentation and fantasy. Pattern dancing is always noticeable and is reserved for beginners.
The truly new is born outside of the usual. Look for places to experiment. If there is no place, organize self-training. The main thing is not to get carried away, because music determines the style. We bring something new to pair dances, rather than trying to change them.
Search, improvise, don’t be afraid to go beyond, develop in different directions, be inspired by music atypical for style
10. Try your hand at basic dance directions
dances exist according to their own non-choreographic laws.
This is the deepest delusion, which has turned into a ceiling for the qualitative development of partner dances. After all, all professional dancers, for example, in salsa or bachata, build their ideas on the basic choreographic principles.
Do not think that choreography is only applicable on stage. Any meaningful movement of the body can be choreographic. In general, try classical or modern choreography. Basically, hip-hop can work too.
11. Look for battle sensations
Pair dances return us to an active position of manifestation of our body. As in the days of our ancient ancestors, we impress the members of the opposite sex by how dexterous, hardy, sexy, etc. we are. Modern laws of the jungle in the entourage of large cities.
If you look around the dance floor, it becomes clear that the majority are clearly herbivores (not in the sense of vegetarians, but in relation to those around them). I am sure that predators are always more interesting in terms of the attractiveness of the image - try to find a counterbalance among herbivores, for example, a cat woman or a lion man.
The conversation is about an internal position, not about aggressiveness. Lability and lack of control are inherent in adolescents, and not in adult self-sufficient people.
Accordingly, even a training or friendly battle gives, on the one hand, practical skills - to make a bright sequence of movements, bring an idea to a climax, show a spectacular feature, on the other hand, develops the psychological basis of the dance - self-confidence, resistance to extraneous attention, self-control and self-control in complex elements.
12. Communicate with professionals
The environment shapes the internal position. Basically, real passionaries of the dance community are ready to openly talk, discuss and support the development of dance in every possible way. Universal principles and the ideas they articulate have a much longer and more practical perspective than meets the eye.
Accept that, for example, behind the words "listen to your partner" is not only a beautiful metaphor, but also a practical skill to literally listen to your partner. At the same time, always treat every thought, even the most respected teacher, as a private opinion.
Your skill will lie in finding the scope of the idea even in conflicting opinions. Most often, the contradiction is speculative and the truth lies in the angle of perception or situationality.
Your dancing growth will stop sooner or later. This can happen at the level of three basic steps or years of experience in teaching and show performances.