ForewordWant Romance? Learn to Dance! This manual and DVD ofBallroom Dance Basics, makes it easy to learn social ballroomdancing. Men, in 5 minutes a day you will learn to dance withbeautiful, smart and single women. Ladies with this you’ll be ableto support your man as he learns to dance with you or meet a manthat is willing to dance with you. You don’t need a partner to startdancing!In Chapter 1 you’ll learn popular ballroom basics as seen on thecompanion DVD. Each lesson includes easy, fun and populardance patterns. To make learning quick and easy you learn dancepatterns you can use in many different dances.In Chapter 2 Dance Dictionary you’ll learn many of the commonterms used in dancing.In Chapter 3 Basic Dance Movements you’ll learn the smallsegments that make up the whole of dancing.Chapter 4 Drillz for Skillz, you’ll learn drills to build danceconfidence and strength quickly. These are like the drills you mayhave learned in football or volleyball.In chapter 5 Dance Etiquette you’ll learn the basic concepts ofdancing with other people.Chapter 6 Dance Accessories introduces you to simple tools thathelp you get used to the feeling and body positions of dancing.Chapter 7 answers some of your frequently asked questions.It is my wholesome dream, wish and vision that the book you areabout to read will enhance your life and the lives of everyone youconnect with. In harmony, Dancin’ David
Table 1. Popular Ballroom Dance, Origins and Songs. Country of Tempo (Beats Dance Song origin per minute) Suavement Dominican Merengue 130 Elvis Crespo Republic Pegame tu Vicio Dominican Bachata Republic 92 Eddy Herrera 1960s I just called to Rumba say I love you Cuba 1930s 96 Stevie Wonder Jamas Salsa Cuba 94 Eddie Santiago Smooth Cuba Cha Cha 100 Santana 1950s Bad Bad LeRoy East Coast United States Brown 160 Swing 1930s Jim Croce Could I have this Waltz dance? France 1812 100 Ann Murray Oranged Fox Trot Colored Sky England 1910 115 Natalie Cole Barrio De Tango ArgentinaArgentine Tango 92 Miguel CaloAmerican Tango La Cumparasita Spain 94 Stayin’ Alive United States Hustle 114 Bee Gees 1960s West Coast Mustang Sally United States 95 Swing Commitments 1950s Tuxedo Junction United States Lindy 135 Benny Goodman 1930sNightclub Two I hope you dance United States 65 Step LeAnn Womack On a good night Two Step United States 165 Wade Hayes Samba Bailamos 92 Columbia Marc Anthony Mr. Pinstriped Suit Quickstep England 175 Big Bad Voodo Daddy That’s Amore GermanyViennese Waltz 115 Dean Martin 1813
Chapter 1 Popular Patterns for Social Ballroom Dancing The term “Ballroom dance” refers to dances created for the large ballrooms and music that was popular in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Fox Trot, Waltz and American Tango are examples of traditional ballroom dances. “Bar-room dances” are dances like Hustle, Swing and Salsa; born in nightclubs, bars and streets. Today these dances are danced in bars as well as ballrooms.Table 2 and 3 are designed to help you track your dance progress.As you can see you will learn to dance quickly because we areshowing you how to do the same patterns in several differentdances. Put a YES in the box once you have learned a pattern for adance. Table 2. Popular dance patterns for smooth dances Fox Two American Nightclub Pattern Waltz Trot Step Tango Two StepTraveling BasicPromenadeInside Turn Outside Turn Zig Zag Twinkle Toss Across
DANCIN’ TIME Merengue Dance Rhythm and Patterns Merengue is the simplest of dances. Double rhythm is kept throughout the song. Merengue is mostly a stationary dance with some traveling. It is known for its speed, sexy Latin hip motion, and patterns that involve a lot of turning. Popular Merengue songs include: “Suavemente” by Elvis Crespo and “Loca Conmigo” by Los Toros.Common Merengue dance tempos: 110-160 beats per minute. Table 4. Merengue beats, rhythm and steps. Basic Merengue Dance Rhythm Beats 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8Rhythm Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Steps Step Step Step Step Step Step Step StepMerengue Line Dance Title: Mucho MerengueChoreographer: Dancin’ DavidDescription: 32 count Beginner 2 WallRhythm: Quick QuickMusic: “Suavemente” by Elvis Crespo1-8: Merengue Basic in place8-16: Merengue left17 – 24: Rotate half-turn right (180 degrees)25 – 32: Merengue forward for 4 and back for 4Level 1 Merengue Dance Patterns1. Basic in place2. Traveling basic3. Rotating Basic4. Follower turn, leader turn
5. All patterns in closed positionLevel 2 Merengue Dance Patterns1. Cuddle2. Cuddle with a duck out3. Hands over the head slide and turn with head loop4. Leader’s waist wrap turn5. Cape and walk around from handshake, follower turns out andstarburstLevel 3 Merengue Dance Patterns1. Cape and walk around with follower’s turn2. Hammerlock, walk under, slide and follower turn3. Follower Swivels4. Follower’s turn to leaders turn with duck under his own arm5. Slide to the side, change of rhythmDANCIN’ TIME Bachata Dance Rhythm and PatternsBachata is one of the Latin dances. Bachata dance timing uses adouble and a single rhythm. Bachata is mostly a stationary dancewith some traveling. It is known for its speed, sexy Latin hipmotion, and patterns that involve a lot of turning. Popular Bachatadance songs include: “Pégame tu Vicio” by Eddy Herrera.Common Bachata dance tempos are: 80-105 beats per minute. Table 5. Bachata beats, rhythm and steps. Basic Bachata Dance Rhythm Beats 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8Rhythm Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Pattern Side Together Side Touch Side Together Side Touch
Bachata Line Dance Title: Beginner BachataChoreographer: Dancin’ DavidDescription: 45 count Beginner 2 Wall line danceRhythm: Quick Quick SlowMusic: “Pégame tu Vicio” by Eddy Herrera1-16: 2 Side Basics17-32: 2 Rotating side Basics33 – 36: Forward and Back37 – 45: Rotate in place to your right with hip rollsLevel 1 Bachata Dance Patterns1. Side Basic2. Forward and back basic3. Side basic with outside/inside for follower4. Side Basic with inside turn for leaderLevel 2 Bachata Dance Patterns1. Cuddle for follower on both sides2. Rotating Basic3. Side basic with outside turn to hammerlock, walk around andinside turn4. Stop and Go DANCIN’ TIME Rumba Dance Rhythm and Patterns Rumba is a combination of single and double time. Rumba is mostly a stationary dance with some traveling. Rumba is known for is sexy Latin hip motion, intimate connections, and stylish leg lines. Popular rumba songs include: “The Look of Love” by Diana Krall. Common Rumba dance tempos: 85-110 beats per minute.
Table 6. Rumba beats, rhythm and steps. Basic Rumba Dance RhythmBeats 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8Rhythm Quick Quick Slow Ly Quick Quick Slow lyPattern Rock Replace Trans ition Rock Replace Trans ition Rumba Line Dance Title: Really Simple Rumba Choreographer: Dancin’ David Description: 52 count Beginner 1 Wall Rhythm: Quick Quick Slow Music: “I just called to say I love you” by Stevie Wonder, “Con Cada Beso” by Huey Dunbar 1-16: 2 Cucarachas 16-32: 2 Front crossovers 33 – 36: 1 Right pivot turn 37 – 45: 2 Fifth position breaks (back crossovers) 46 – 52: Box Level 1 Rumba Dance Patterns 1. Cucaracha 2. Front crossovers 3. Back crossovers 4. Outside turn 5. Box Step Level 2 Rumba Dance Patterns 6. She/He Pivot turns- no hands + w/hands 7. Sway 8. Progressive rocking walks 9. Front crossovers to leader’s direction change to outside turn for follower 10. Stop and gos (SG)
Level 3 Rumba Dance Patterns11. Open break to sweat heart with leader rhythm change12. Cross body lead13. CBL to crossovers - right turn exit for her14. Back walk around for leader15. Back spot turn
Chapter 3 Dance DictionaryDanceDance is your natural response to rhythm. Dancing combines yourbody, mind and spirit creations when you feel and interpretharmonious sounds.DancingStep 1. Your conscious control of your response to music.Step 2. Your unconscious co-creation with music.Layers of DanceI feel that dance is one of the most connected, intricate, andcomplex forms of creativity. There are many layers of activityhappening in the same moment. Creating an environment where allof these layers connect in harmony is what makes dancing one ofthe best experiences of life. Layers of dance 1. Physical – moving with strength, finesse, coordination and creativity 2. Mental – remembering while being present and planning 3. Emotional – creating with the music, partner, and audience 4. Spiritual – being in harmony with the flow of energy 5. Musical – being in harmony with the music 6. Individual – considering your own abilities, limits, dreams, and desires 7. Mutual – considering others’ abilities, comfort, limits, dreams, and desires 8. Collective – moving cooperatively in a loosely structured emergent group 9. Performance – considering the joy and reaction of those watchingDesireDesire is the driving force behind everything we do. We desirethings to get the good feeling we have when we receive what we
desire. You may desire better health, better relationships, or morefun. Whatever your desire, you can have it.There are a lot of options in life. We choose our actions based ondesire. The very fact that you are reading this means somewheredeep inside, or maybe near the surface, you have the desire todance and enjoy life to its fullest. Congratulations, you are on yourway!Lead (verb)To go before. To initiate movement. To communicate the nextmovement to your dance partner through a physical, visual, orverbal connection.LeaderDancer who is leading.FollowTo go after. To respond to the information given by the leader andcreate the movement he/she has initiated.FollowerDancer who is following.Line DancesDances that are done in a line without touching another person.Partner DancesDances done while holding another person. Partner dances couldbe lead and follow or choreographed.Dance ConnectionsA link between two or more body parts or a body part and anotherobject like the floor, a partner, or the music.Self ConnectionsConnections internal to your body that describe how musclegroups, thoughts, and imagination connect to provide strength,posture and movement.
Swing HoldLeader’s right hand on the followers leftshoulder and the followers left arm ontop of the leader’s right arm. Theleader’s left hand holding the follower’sright hand at the follower’s waist leveland the follower’s right hand is on top ofthe leader’s left hand. The leaders palmis facing his body and the follower’spalm is facing the floor.Latin HoldLeader’s right hand on the followers leftshoulder and left hand holding her righthand so that both arms form a rightangle. The follower’s right hand isusually holding the leader’s left thumbwith his fingers gently wrapped aroundher hand.Ballroom HoldLeader’s right hand on the followers leftshoulder and left hand holding her righthand so that both arms form a V thatmeets in between the two bodies at justbelow the follower’s shoulder level. Thehands are usually palm to palm with theleader’s fingers gently wrapped aroundthe followers.
Chapter 4 Dance Drillz for SkillzAs with any art form, a solid foundation will help you improvefaster, enjoy it more, and be safer. Dance drills also provide intensefocus that enables you to become stronger in a specific area faster.This section describes dance drills that get very good results. Theyare listed in the order I recommend them. 1. Align your spine and stretch This dance drill helps your body stay energized and connected. Strong posture is essential for any form of athletic activity. 1. Place your hand on top of your head and push it up to the sky. 2. This will stretch and energize your spinal column. 3. Place one hand on the back of yourhead and another below your chest bone and expand your bodyinto your hands.2. Counting musicThis dance drill helps you find the beat and phrase in music.1. Simply count from 1 to 8 on each beat throughout the songwhile you are not dancing.Hint: The “one” beat in the music is usually when a singer startssinging or a new instrument starts playing. After a while you’ll feelthat you are in phrase with the song.3. Clapping to musicThis dance drill helps you start coordinating movement to the beat.1. Clap your hands on each beat of music.2. Clap your hands on the even beats 2 4 6 8.Hint: This should feel like what you normally do when listening tomusic.4. Body tapping to musicThis dance drill helps you feel the music in your body.1. Gently tap your thigh, hip, or chest on each beat of the music.
Line Dance Step DescriptionsTitle: Start Here!Choreographer: Dancin’ DavidDescription: Beginner, 4 wall, 32 count line danceMusic: “Pour Me Another” by Joe Diffie (2 sets of 8)“I Can’t Dance” by Ricochet (4 sets of 8)1-8: Step in place; stepping on each beat of music, R, L, R, L andrepeat9-16: Toe taps right & left; tap R to right, return home, tap L toleft, return home, repeat17-24: Dance back & forward; Dance back R, L, R, L; Danceforward R, L, R, L25-32: Heel touches; Tap R heel forward, return home, tap L heelforward return home, repeat.Start over rotating ¼ left during in place steps. Styling: Hitch on 4 of back step, lock on 2 of forward step. Hip circles on rotating.
Chapter 6 Dance AccessoriesBelow are some common household items you can use to improveyour dancing quickly and easily.Shoes and ToolsThis section describes accessories to help you enjoy your dancingexperience.Choosing a Shoe StyleYour shoe style will depend on the style of dance you are doing. Itis always important to choose a fit that is comfortable; you will beenjoying them for many hours. Some dancers choose differentshoes for practicing than social dancing and a third pair forperforming. Below we look at the different styles of dances and theshoes that go with them.Ballroom Dance ShoesAs we know there are two subcategories of ballroom dancing:smooth and rhythm. The rhythm section is handled under Latin.Here we’ll talk about smooth dancing footwear. For the leaders theshoes are similar to what we may call a Sunday shoe, generallyblack with a small ½” heel. Followers tend to wear 1-2” heels. It ishelpful at first to wear lower shoes with enclosed toes until yougain some experience getting those toes out of the way, if youknow what I mean. DANCINTIME.com is a good source ofballroom dance footwear for practicing, social dancing andperforming.Swing Dance ShoesSwing dancing can be high impact, much like aerobics. Therefore,many swing dancers often choose to wear sneakers with suede,felt, or moleskin attached to the front half of the bottom of theshoe. An example of this is a typical bowling shoe, very much likea sneaker with a low friction front half and high friction rubber forthe heel. Alternatively, swing shoes are also very popular; these aremore like Sunday shoes but with the white tips like you see in themovies.
Latin dance shoes Latin dance shoes have high heels. Two inches for the male/lead is common, often called Cuban heels. Female Latin dance shoes are often open toed.Country Dance ShoesAs you may imagine, cowboyboots are the traditional style ofshoes worn in country dancing.They fit the look and are wellsuited to this style of dance. Forcomfortable, good-lookingcowboy boots please check outEvening Star Country DanceBoots. Evening Star boots arelightweight and comfortable. Alternatively, I wear my Bloch Jazzsneakers while country dancing. They are durable, lightweight, andeasily adapt to many different surfaces. The feature I enjoyed bestabout them was their cushioned soles. I can dance in jazz sneakersfor hours on many surfaces and not have sore feet.
Chapter 7 Frequently Asked Dance QuestionsWhat is dancing?Very simply, dancing is what happens when your body moves tomusic. Examples of dancing could be as simple as tapping yourtoes or snapping your fingers. We are all born with a naturalphysical, emotional, and spiritual response to music. Dance is theexperience of allowing that response to come out and enjoying theprocess.What is partner dancing?Partner dancing is a general term used to describe two peopledancing together and physically touching each other. One of thepartners is leading the movement and the other is following thelead. At higher levels of dancing the follower has opportunities tolead and add on to the movement through embellishments anddecorations such as arm, leg and head movements.What is social partner dancing?Social dancing is dancing in a social setting. To put it another way,it is non-competitive dancing. Social dancing benefits includeexercise, meeting new people, being a part of a community, andconnecting with other people. Many styles of movement areenjoyed by social dancers. Ballet is not social dancing, as it isalmost always done as a performance.What is competitive partner dancing?In competition dancing, dancers are judged and ranked againsttheir peers. Competition dancing benefits include challenging thephysical and mental fitness of the dancers, joy, accomplishment,and teamwork. Dancers are judged based on established standardsof accepted techniques, styles, patterns, and attire.How long will it take me to learn to dance?As with all learning, the time it takes is dependant on the student,teacher, and amount of time on a given topic. We believe you canfeel comfortable social dancing after a four week course with atleast one practice session between classes. It’s important to
remember that dance is an art form, like playing the guitar orpainting. So there are many layers of progress and comfort.Learning involves patience, time, and an understanding. Also,there is no right or wrong, there is only what you create.
About Dancin’ David, Vision and CreditsBiography of Dancin’ DavidIt was 1993 when I discovered my love of dancing; connectingwith people, expressing myself, moving to the rhythm, creatingand laughing. My transformation took place in a large dance halland country bar in Orlando, Florida. The people and the energy inthat room provided a safe haven and a social model I so desired tore-create. So many people were having a good time with goodvibrations, staying away from the easily available alcohol, insteadgetting high on the music, movement and connection with eachother. Dancing is so engaging and healthy.Since that summer I began sharing the joy with everyone whowould listen. This sharing led me to many wonderful places andpeople. In the fall of 1999 I met my future wife, Dawn Dawson, onthe dance floor. Our magnetism toward each other lit up the roomand continues today.After I graduated college in 1996 with an Electrical Engineeringdegree from Alfred University, I began to explore professionallessons and competitions from Chicago to Boston. Travelingacross the northeast David I trained with the top teachers inCountry, Swing, Latin and Ballroom dancing.Since 1998 I have been teaching in studios and clubs on a weeklybasis as well as hosting weekend workshop events where Nationalteachers come to the area to dance and teach all weekend long.In 2001, I committed my life to my love of people and dance. Icurrently own and operate a Saratoga Springs, New York baseddance business called DANCIN’ TIME with my wife and partnerDancin’ Dawn.
IndexPage Chapter 1 Popular Patterns for Ballroom Dancing3 Merengue4 Bachata5 Rumba7 Salsa9 Cha Cha10 East Coast Swing12 Waltz14 Fox TrotPage Chapter 2 Basic Dance Movements16 In Place16 Traveling16 Moving Forward and Backward17 Moving Side to Side17 Moving Up and Down17 Heel Lead17 Toe Lead17 Rotating17 Turning17 Spinning17 Spotting18 1st Position18 2nd Position18 3rd Position19 4th Position19 5th Position19 Complete Weight Change19 Partial Weight Change19 Touch or Tap step19 Rock Step20 Syncopation20 Ball Change20 Kick Ball Change20 Coaster Step20 Sailor Shuffle.20 Isolation20 Promenade
Page Topic20 Choreography21 Latin Motion21 Knee Movement21 Hip Movement21 Upper body movement21 StylingPage Chapter 3 Dance Dictionary22 Dance22 Dancing22 Layers of Dance22 Desire23 Lead23 Leader23 Follow23 Follower23 Line Dances23 Partner Dances23 Dance Connections23 Self-connections24 Alignment24 Posture25 Grounding25 Stretching25 Center25 Frame26 Physical Fitness28 Mental Fitness29 Energy29 Spiritual29 Floor Connections30 Poise30 Partner Connections30 Compression31 Stretch31 Rotational Compression/Stretch32 Hand Connections32 Open Position32 Closed Position
Page Topic32 Close embrace33 Swing Hold33 Latin Hold34 Ballroom Hold34 Leverage Move Connections34 Music Connections34 Musicality34 Beat34 Down and Up beats34 Time Between the Beats35 The “&” Count35 The “a” Count35 Bar/Measure35 Rhythm Unit35 Rhythms35 Rhythm Variations36 Tempo36 Phrase36 Minor Phrase36 Major Phrase36 Break36 Accent36 Style36 GenrePage Chapter 4 Drillz for Skillz37 Align your spine37 Counting music37 Clapping to music37 Body Taping38 The Twist38 Roll down, roll up38 Core strength, balance and Rise39 Frame Setting39 Shoe Drill for Core Connection40 Center First40 Pillow squeeze40 Paper Slide40 Walk, walk up
Page Topic40 Military Turns41 Draw in rotation41 3rd Position counterclockwise traveling rotations41 3rd Position Traveling Left and Right Rotations42 High 5 Lead and Follow43 Compression and stretch43 Rotational Compression43 Wrist rotation walks44 Line DancesPage Chapter 5 Dance Etiquette46 Line of Dance46 Floorcraft46 Dress/Attire47 Politeness47 Respect47 Hygiene47 Team48 Performing48 Preparation: Audience, Music, Costume, Space49 Partnering49 Choreography49 Styling49 Tricks49 Dance SurfacesPage Chapter 6 Dance Accessories51 Dance Shoes and Tools53 Dance Connector53 Media Players54 Song Assist56 Chapter 7 Frequently Asked Dance Questions
DANCIN’ TIMEDANCIN’ TIME provides dance lessons for groups of all sizes aswell as private one-on-one dance lessons.Thank you again for taking the time to read my book. I lookforward to hearing from you if you have any questions at all. David@DANCINTIME.com 518-320-2613 www.DANCINTIME.com What time is it?…it’s DANCIN’ TIME!!!
Responses to Man’s Manual to Ballroom Basics“David’s teaching style and kind, genuine personality makes iteasy to learn to dance.” – Steve Dancin’ David’s Vision I see a world that values cooperation more than competition. Becoming aware of yourself and your part in a community through social partner dancing can help make this vision a reality. PurposeMy purpose is to be in Harmony withmyself.Your purpose is to be in Harmony withyourself.Our purpose is to be in Harmony witheach other. What time is it?…it’s DANCIN’ TIME!!! DANCINTIME.com