Basic Swing Dance Moves

I’m sure you’ve seen the show, “Dancing with the Stars”. Maybe you’ve entertained a thought or two of learning how to dance butt you find yourself shying away from the prospect. I mean, those swing steps look too fancy to try out, right? Well, my friend, the good news is that it’s really not all that hard. Just about anybody can do the basic swing dance moves in a relatively short amount of time.

Don’t be fooled by all the flailing limbs that swingers do, it looks hard but when you get the footwork down, the rest will follow easily enough. A good tip with footwork is to keep your steps small enough so that you can switch to the next step quickly. Bend your knees for better balance and easier transition as well.

There are many swing dances and they are danced with different counts. The following steps are the basic footwork for the East Coast swing: For the lead, take a small side step with the left foot and close the right foot beside it. Take another left side step, but instead of closing the space between them, shift your weight to the right foot. Bring the left foot beside the right foot. Take a small step to the right with the right foot, and step back with the left foot. Shift the weight to the right. The follower does the opposite of the lead’s steps.

The East Coast swing is danced with an open-hold. The couple stands around 6 inches away from each other. The face each other and hold each other’s hands lightly. The man holds out his arms in front of his body with his palms facing each other, the fingers making a slight concave. The woman’s hands form a “C” and rests inside the man’s hands.

You need to be able to master the foundational footwork in order for your posture and form to line up with the rest of the dance. Remember, if the choreography works on one person, it means it can be done. Problems arise when the footwork, posture or form is off. Working on your technique comes first before you can even begin to develop your showmanship skills.

Other basic swing dance moves include the under arm turn, the hammer lock and the back pass. You can find out more about these intricate steps and the tricks to doing them “effortlessly” by watching this great dance instructional DVD. This video will teach you how to pull off the different steps in ballroom dancing as well as give you tips on how to improve your over-all performance.

Remember to take 15 minutes to stretch all your joints before you start with your basic swing dance moves. It will warm up and loosen your muscles to prepare your body for the workout ahead. Doing so will save you from potential injuries and soreness afterwards. Roll your head and shoulders around, rotate your ankles, hip and knee joints, and stretch your limbs a few times for maximum effect.


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