Getting Started with Your Ballroom Dance Lessons

Taking ballroom dance lessons is a good move. However, before getting started, take a little time to get to know your options. You might choose from a ballroom dance studio, a series of group classes, online or video lessons, or lessons at a bar or dance club.

It doesn’t matter what you choose, just get out there and enjoy yourself!

Full-Service Ballroom Dance Studio

Craving structure and personalized instruction?  Private lessons are geared towards your individual abilities.  For this reason, getting started with your ballroom dance lessons at a studio is the best way to go!

Whether a franchise studio like Arthur Murray and Fred Astaire or an independent ballroom dance studio, you’ll likely encounter the three-way system of teaching. This will include a mix of private lessons, group classes, and dance parties.

Here are some “Quick Tips for a Great Ballroom Dance Lesson” from Dance Safari.

Private Lessons

A private lesson consists of a teacher working with one student or a couple. By the way, private lessons are usually held Monday-Friday afternoons and evenings by appointment.

Group Classes

A group class has one or two instructors and a number of students.  During the class, the leaders line up on one side, the followers face them with the teacher working from the middle.

Group classes are an efficient way to teach steps.  That’s because there’s lots of repetition.  First,  you’ll dance on your own, then with a partner, and finally, you’ll move on to a new partner.  To be sure, these classes are great for practice and, as you know, practice makes perfect!

Dance Parties

Weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly socials are where you get to dance with other students and instructors.  Dance parties at a studio are kind of like when you learned how to drive and you’d practice in an empty parking lot before hitting the streets.

Adult Education

If you’re not in a hurry to learn, try taking group classes.  In fact, getting started with your ballroom dance lessons with a series of group classes is fun and economical.

These classes are designed to introduce the basics of social dancing.  Enter your weekly dance lesson into your calendar so you can schedule your other appointments around it.

A few places where you might find group classes are:

Community-minded organizations often offer group classes in ballroom dancing.  Ideally, they would consist of a 4-8 week series.

  • YMCA
  • Community Centers
  • Elks or Moose Lodge
  • Colleges
  • County Parks

Videos or Online Learning

If you are a visual learner and want to self-direct your dance education, then videos and online courses may be the thing for you.

You can expect a male and female instructor, each demonstrating their part. They’ll dance the step as a couple, then separately show the leader’s part and the follower’s part.  After every few patterns, they’ll put together groups of steps so you can see how they flow.

One benefit of this type of instruction is availability.  Because you have access to these lessons 24/7, you can repeat any part whenever you need to.

Bar or Dance Club

Another way of getting started with your ballroom dance lessons would be at a local bar or dance club. Many times a venue that has live music will have a dance lesson before the music starts. The cost can be free to as much as $15 and will usually run from 30-60 minutes.

These classes tend to be more social than educational, but are a fun way to test the waters of learning to dance.

So there you have it. Depending on your time and budget, there’s a place for you to learn to dance. Please don’t hesitate to give it a try.

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    • That’s great, Luisa. Keep it up and soon you’ll be a great dancer with a whole set of dancing buddies. By the way, thank you for posting “I Do Not Want to Be Your Weeping Woman”. Loved it!

  1. […] That’s the next question.  If you don’t dance now, the important thing is that you learn.  The deal with partner dancing is that someone has to teach you. That someone can be a private instructor, a group class teacher, a video, or an online class.  Here is what you can expect, “Getting Started with Your Ballroom Dance Lessons”. […]

    • Hi Susie. Thanks for the comment. Dancing is a sweet hobby. I hope, with all the activities you’re involved in, that you still have time to indulge.

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