How to country western swing dance

Country Swing Dance Basics | Everything You Need to Country Dance!

What is Country Swing?

The likely origin of country swing came as hustle dancers followed John Travolta off the disco dance floor and into the country bar after the hit movie Urban Cowboy. While western swing music tracks back to the 1930’s or 1940’s the dance style of Country Swing as we see it today look a lot like the hustle of the 1970’s. It’s a simple, high energy dance style that doesn’t require a lot of dance floor an is perfect for crowded country bars and dance halls.

Although this video is titled “what is country two step” it really talks about the history and progression of country dancing in general – Plus it’s pretty entertaining!

Country Swing Dancing

Country Swing Dancing is now a popular dance style especially in Texas, Oklahoma and California. Really though I’ve seen it in country bars outside the USA in places like Calgary Canada. It’s a super fun dance that can be seen anywhere there is a country or western influence. While there are other types of swing dances like west coast swing, or east coast swing, country swing is its own style!

Basic Country Swing Dance Steps

The basics of country swing are easy! With just a few moves you’ll be dancing the night away. All you need are the basic, some turns, a hammerlock, cradle, the slide and a signature of country swing, the lean! You can learn them all below!

Jump to a move with these time stamps:

Basic Technique 1:20
Basic Step 2:35
Turns 4:27
Hammerlock 9:43
Cuddle 11:31
Lean 15:18
Slide 20:00

Country Swing Moves

Ok this is where it gets fun! There are endless country swing moves and patterns you can do. Again the best part is they are all pretty darn easy. In the video below we walk you through some of the most common cool moves you’ll want to learn for your next night out dancing!

Country Swing Dance Songs

While we have lists of our favorite east coast swing songs,  west coast swing songs and even country slow dance songs, we have to suggest a couple friends for the best country swing dance music. This country swing spotify playlist will be sure to get you up dancing.

Country Swing

Ok so at this point you’re hooked on dancing right? You might be wondering what’s next? Well the dance world is big and there are lots of dances to learn. If you want a step by step way to improve not only your country swing but also dances like country two step, nightclub, WCS and ECS then head over to our video vault. It’s like Netflix for Dancers!

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Country dance lessons - 2 step country western dancing

Learn how to country dance with our videos. This dance style is done both socially and competitively mostly in the USA! Country Western dancing includes a few different dances such as: country 2 Step, Polka, Waltz and Swing. There are many Line Dances as well. This is a fun style of dance and there is much to learn. Here are some free basic steps you can learn right away.

Country dance lessons

How to 2 step – Country dance basic step:
This is the most basic step in partner country dance. It is basically just 4 walks forward for the guys and 4 walks back for the ladies. The way to count is Q,Q,S,S.

How to Do Basic Turn in Closed Position – Country dance:
In this second lesson you will build on what you just learned above. This step shows you have you can turn around one another and switch directions. The guys need to lead the ladies strongly so that they can pass through.

How to Do the Cowboy Boogie – Country dance move:
Learn this Country Line Dancing routine. You do this one all on your own! This is great for those of you who don’t always have a partner around. You can teach it to your friends and dance it all together at your favorite bar.

History of Country dancing:

Country dancing was actually born out of foreigners from England, Ireland and Africa. They brought their styles of dance from their home countries to America including Waltz and polka. Later, Polka evolved into the 2-step which is the essential dance of Country dancing. Other styles that are considered Country dancing are Country Waltz, Cowboy cha cha and East/West Coast Swing.

People would dance just about anywhere they could – in bars, dance halls and house parties. In the 1920’s Country music was commercialized and with it Country Western style of dancing. Cowboys loved to dance and would often dance in bars late at night by leading this very social dance. Because of the Cowboy boots this dance involves the technique of using the heel and only later landing to the toe, there is a relaxed, calm upper body with minimal hip action.

Leading and following Tips:

– Both partners must maintain a nice posture and stretch up. From there, you want to connect to one another through the man’s left hand and ladies right hand.
– When the man leads he doesn’t use his arms, but instead his own body weight… By moving his body forward hi gives a very strong single that he wants to move. At the point the the ladies feel the man’s spine moving forward, they need to respond as fast as possible and move.
– The man is responsible to lead the lady’s direction and timing. For example, if the man wants to syncopatesome steps he needs to make that very clear to his partner.

Want to learn other dances? Visit the page below:
Other dance styles:
How to Ballroom dance
Social basic dance steps – Ballroom
Ballet dance terms
how to hip hop dance
How to breakdance
How to dance in a club and parties

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    Swing - The truth is in the dance!

    Dances of All Nations‎ > ‎USA‎ > ‎


    The term "swing" is commonly used for a group of dances that developed during the "swing era"20s - 1940s) or for modern dances that derive from them. Historically, swing has been categorized within the African-American folk dance tradition, although there are some exceptions that have been common among whites. Nearly all forms of swing are characterized by the syncopated (shortened) rhythm found in African-American and West African music and dance and with jazz dances of the Jazz Age (late 19th century to 1940s). Most swing styles have evolved along with the swing music genre, although many of these styles and their derivatives are now danced to contemporary music. Now swing is widespread in many developed Western and Asian countries, although in each city and country certain dances, their culture and music "suitable" for them are popular in different ways. Swing forms
    The term "swing" is commonly used to refer to one or all of the swing types: lindy hop, charleston, step, balboa, and blues (as a dance). The name often also extends to jive, rock and roll, West Coast Swing, Se rock or Le Rock, and other dances that developed in the 1940s and beyond. In the United States, the term "swing" is more often used to refer to such social dances as West Coast Swing, East Coast Swing, Hand Dancing, and so on. In Europe, boogie-woogie and acrobatic rock and roll are more common, both for communication and for competition, which makes it possible to equate these dances with swing. In Singapore and elsewhere, Latin American dances like salsa and tango are often taught and danced alongside swing. In many places, tap and various types of jazz, hip-hop, and other modern African-American dances are popular. Variations are born in local dance communities.
    Many swing dancers today tend to dance several pair dance styles in parallel, to improve technique, and also to preserve the historical relationship between the dances of the swing era of the 20s and 30s. For example, in the Savoy Ballroom, along with swing jazz, groups often played waltzes, Latin American compositions, and the like. The dancers often knew and danced many popular and traditional (folk) dances. Now there are several hybrid forms that combine swing and other styles, such as swango, a combination of Argentine tango and swing.
    Early jazz forms of the 1920s and earlier
    It is worth noting that early forms (from 1890 to 1910) of what would later become known as swing dance were danced in the southern United States. However, due to the racial conflict known as Jim Crow laws (the so-called racial segregation), many talented African Americans moved to the north, where the attitude towards blacks was much more accepting. Many of them combined their native dance style with what was already common in clubs in cities such as Chicago, Cleveland, New York, Detroit, St. Louis and others. As a result, many new dance styles appeared, almost every city had its own style.
    Black Bottom
    Rhythm Tap dance
    Texas Tommy.
    Swing was first mentioned in the San Francisco Tribune in 1911, in a story about Texas Tommy dancing at the Fairmouth Hotel. In Texas Tommy, the partners periodically parted instead of dancing in a close position all the time, and then the partner “spun out” (swing out) the partner, creating an opportunity for improvisation and acrobatic elements. The term "acrobatic" appears frequently in the description of this dance. Texas Tommy is considered the immediate forerunner of Lindy Hop. When the original Texas Tommy dancers were asked to describe their dance, they said it was exactly like the Lindy Hop, only the first couple of steps were different. They also said that: "Some time after the breakaways, the Texas Tommy evolved to include elements of many other dances, including dances that mimic animal movements such as the Grizzly Bear, Bunny Hop, Eagle Rock and Turkey. Trot." Shim Sham Shimmy - Popular Line Dance 1920s and 30s.
    Apache is an old French dance from the suburbs of Paris, popular since the mid-1800s. The meaning of the dance was in the performance of a scene in which a man, or a pimp, subdues or punishes a woman or a prostitute. The dance consisted in the fact that the woman crawled away from the man in a close position and the man threw her. This is the only known early dance in which, like the Texas Tommy, the couple part ways. The "apache spin" and "texas tommy spin" moves came from these dances, and it's easy to see how they fit into the theme of the dance.
    Charleston is a classical dance popular in the 10s and early 20s, related to Lindy Hop. The Charleston comes from African-American neighborhoods and achieved widespread popularity in the 1920s through stage performances. Stylistically, the Charleston of the 20s and the Lindy Charleston are distinguished - later variations often used in the Lindy Hop.
    Breakaway came from Charleston in the late 1920s and is often associated with dancers such as George "Shorty" Snowden. The "breaking away" of partners from each other into an open stance is often seen as a development of dances such as the Texas Tommy, as well as an important step in the history of the Lindy Hop. This dance is popular among dancers interested in the history of the Lindy Hop.
    Forms of the 1930s and 1940s
    Lindy Hop - reached its height of popularity in the late 1920s and early 1930s. The Lindy Hop is the most developed and most complex form of swing. It is characterized by the possibility of improvisation and a certain flexibility of rhythmic structure. BASIC for 6 and 8 accounts. It is danced to almost any kind of jazz music, as well as to blues and other types of music with a blues or jazz rhythm.
    Balboa is an 8-part dance characterized by close contact between partners and fast footwork. This dance is particularly suitable for fast jazz music (usually everything in the 180 to 320 beats per minute region) and/or limited space on the dance floor, although it is also danced at a slower pace. Blues today is an informal form of swing with no fixed forms and a strong focus on connection, sensitivity and improvisation, often with strong body contact. Although it was originally danced to the music of the same name, any non-fast 4/4 tempo music is suitable for it, including rock ballads and R'n'B. Historically, there have been many types of blues dances, including slow drag. In some places only blues is danced, though mostly only in the United States. Collegiate shag is a fairly simple 6 beat dance, fast and energetic. It was popular at college parties, hence its name. A step-dancing couple is characterized by a close position and a lot of energetic footwork variations.
    St. Louis shag is a more complex variation featuring syncopated "stomping".
    Forms from the 1940s, 1950s and later
    Boogie Woogie was born in the 1940s with the advent of the music of the same name. It is now popular in Europe, and is considered by some to be a counterpart to East Coast Swing, danced to jump-n-jive or boogie-woogie.
    Western swing, also called country swing, is a cultural form. It resembles East Coast Swing but adds some variation from other country dances.
    East Coast Swing - 6-beat swing. It is also called Triple-Time Swing or Jitterbug. East Coast swing has a very simple structure and foot positions, simple movements and style. It is democratic and popular, it is often danced to slow, medium and fast jazz, blues and rock and roll.
    Washington Hand Dancing
    Jitterbug is often described as a branch of Lindy Hop, sometimes used as a synonym. However, the term Jitterbug refers to a later time - (late 30s / early 40s), it is believed that this word was dismissively called white dancers. (Jitterbug (slang) = pale spirochete)
    Jive - (Jive (English) - nonsense, chatter) - a slang word popular among young people in the late 40s. Jive is also one of the dances of the Latin American ballroom (sports) dance program. Modern jive is very different from swing in style, although it often uses the same figures and movements.
    Push and Whip is a Texas form of swing.
    Skip jive - British variant popular in the 50s and 60s.
    West Coast Swing developed in the 1940s and 50s as a stylistic variation of the Lindy Hop. Partners stay on the line, and although this limits their ability to move left and right, it improves their ability to rotate in both directions. West Coast swing is often danced to blues and rock and roll. It is popular in the United States and Canada, but scarce in Australia, New Zealand, and most Asian countries. In these countries it is often compared to Se Rock and dirty Latin jive. Acrobatic rock and roll is popular in Europe. The popularity of acrobatic rock and roll is associated with Russian acrobats who "captured" the dance, although it is popular throughout Europe. This dance is more for competitive performances or sports than for communication.
    Rock and roll developed in the 1950s along with rock and roll music. Rock and roll is very popular in Australia and is danced both for socializing and in competitions and performances. In this country, the style has long been associated with Lindy Hop because many of the early Lindy Hop dancers moved from Lindy Hop into the rock and roll tradition since the early 1990s. There is a long debate whether rock and roll belongs to swing, especially in relation to the music to which it is danced. Regardless, many old Lindy Hop dancers are also good at rock and roll. Usually this dance is for older people (from 30) than lindy hop (25 and under).
    Modern jive, also known as leroc and seroc, developed in the 1980s from the French form of jive (reputedly). Swing Performance
    Competition/Performance Styles
    Traditionally, a distinction is made between "ballroom swing" and "street swing". Ballroom swing is part of the American style of ballroom dancing. Street swing and ballroom swing differ in appearance. Ballroom swing is danced in competitions, it has strictly defined figures (i.e. a series of connected movements). Street swing is danced in many styles and places with a thousand differences and is very subject to interpretation and interpretation.
    Social dancing
    Almost all of these dances are popular in the form of so-called "social dances", with the support of local communities holding discos with DJs and bands playing the music most suitable for a particular style of dance. There are many active local clubs and associations, classes with both independent and school-affiliated teachers, and workshops with visiting or local teachers. Most of these styles also have camps or lindy exchanges.
    The historical development of swing styles often parallels the development of popular music trends. Charleston danced and danced to ragtime, lindy hop danced to swing (a kind of jazz). West Coast swing is usually danced to blues, rock 'n' roll, or any not too fast music in 4/4 tempo. Country swing is often danced to country or western music. Hip-hop swing is danced to hip-hop. And the blues is danced to historical blues or to slow music of various genres, but usually to jazz or blues. There are local variations of these styles, in each case influenced by DJs, dance teachers and bands.

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