Learn To Dance For Your Wedding Or Social Event - Los Angeles/Santa Monica








Ballroom/Club Dances

Ballroom and Night Club partner dancing is defined as contact dancing that is danced as a couple at Hotel Ballrooms and Night Clubs, Weddings etc. where one partner leads (usually the guy), and the other partner follows (usually the girl). Ballroom dancing was first introduced and developed in the 1940's in large Hotel Ballrooms and danced to live big band music, that's how Ballroom dancing got its name.

The most popular ballroom dances today are the Fox Trot, Waltz and Swing.  The Swing, also known as Jitterbug, or Jive. Today it is considered both
a Ballroom and a club dance.

There are two different styles of Ballroom dancing, International or competition Style and American Social Style.

Ballroom dances can also classified as either Smooth dances or Rhythm dances.


The International Style of dancing is danced mostly for dance competitions or for shows like Dancing With The Stars. Dance competitions are from beginner/Bronze levels to advanced or Gold levels.  There are dance competitions for students or Amateur dancers only, for Pro-Am (Teacher with Student) and Pro and Professional (Teacher/Teacher).

The International Ballroom Competition Dances are:

Slow Foxtrot
International Tango
Viennese Waltz

The International or Competition Latin Dances are:

Cha Cha
Paso Doble

American OR Social Ballroom dancing is danced in both open and closed positions with your partner.  Dancers are free to release each other or
stay together in closed positions.


The American Ballroom Smooth Dances are:

Viennese Waltz
American Tango

The American Latin & Swing Dances are:

Cha Cha
Mambo /Salsa
East Coast Swing
West Coast Swing

There are also partner dances which are mainly danced in the night clubs, at weddings or specialized dance and social events.

These dances include:

West Coast Swing
Argentine Tango
Two Step (Nightclub, Texas, etc.)

The five most popular Ballroom dances in the world are Foxtrot, Waltz, Rumba, Cha Cha, and Swing. A person skilled in these five dances can go anywhere in the world and find someone to dance with. Following is a little bit about each of these dances.


The Foxtrot originated in 1914 in New York City by Harry Fox. It is one of the most versatile of all the ballroom social dances since it can be danced to a wide variety of music with varying tempos.

The foxtrot dance is a "walking"  or smooth relaxed dance. The dancers move around the dance floor in a relaxed style to 4/4 tempo music.



The Waltz originated in the suburbs of Vienna and the Alpine region of Austria. By the Seventeenth Century it was danced in the Ballrooms of the Hapsburg Court in Germany. Today it is a popular dance at weddings and other social events.

The Waltz is also expressed by movement around the room.

The character is elegant, regal, and graceful.
The style or technique used is rise and fall.
The timing is: ONE - two - three
With the "one" being the downbeat

The basic Waltz step is the box step, a sequence of six steps which, if you were to draw a line connecting all six, would form a box.


American Rumba is a modified version of the "Son" a popular dance in middle class Cuba before World War II. It was introduced in this country in the 1920's and 1930's. It is slow and rhythmical.

Rumba is sometimes called the "Latin Waltz" or the "Waltz with a wiggle".

The Rumba is a "spot dance". It is danced in one spot and is expressed through body movement.

The character is romantic and sexy.
The style or technique used is Cuban motion of the hips.
The timing is: Slow - quick - quick

Many of the steps danced in the Waltz can be danced in the Rumba with Rumba timing, Cuban motion, and Latin arm styling.


Cha Cha, originally known as Cha-Cha-Cha, has its origins in the Cuban Mambo. It gets its name from the distinctive syncopated triple step (cha cha cha) danced between 2 rock steps. It came to this country in the middle 1950's.

The Cha Cha is also a spot dance and is expressed though body animation.

The character is fun, flirty, playful
The style or technique used is Cuban motion and syncopated steps.
In America, Cha Cha starts on the "two" beat.
The timing is: two - three - four - and - one

Cha Cha shares many of the same steps as Mambo or Salsa with the cha cha triple step thrown in.


There are many forms of swing. East Coast Swing, West Coast Swing, Lindy, Lindy Hop, Jitterbug, etc. All of them originate in the 1920's with the Black community dancing Charleston and Lindy Hop to Jazz music.

Swing is also a spot dance.

The character is fast, fun, playful
The style or technique used is 1/2 time motion
There are 3 different timings used in swing:
Single time: Slow (1,2) Slow (3,4) Quick (5) Quick (6)
Double time: 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6
Triple Time: 1 and 2, 3 and 4, 5, 6

Swing steps are a combination of rock steps and triple steps


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