9 Tips To Square Dance Like A Pro
So you’ve started square dancing! It’s fun, and you love square dancing, but you want to raise your level of confidence so that you will not embarrass yourself on the dance floor.
If you want to improve your square dance moves and dance like a pro, here are nine tips to get you there. They can help you shine on the dance floor no matter what your level of experience is.
1. Wear the Right Square Dance Attire
Some square dance clubs have a dress code where the women wear circular skirts, petticoat and pettipants, prairie skirts, or traditional square dance skirts with a blouse in matching colors and low-heeled shoes suitable for square dancing.
However, wearing the right square dance attire while square dancing is our number one tip, so if you want to dance like a pro look the part and play the part!
Dressing the part will always make you feel more confident and ready to do your best. Once you change to your square dance dress, you’ll feel different, you’ll feel more focused, and you will feel like dancing and improving your moves.
Never dress down for a dance and dress neatly and appropriately. You won’t want to be in a worse situation where you’re wearing uncomfortable clothing that doesn’t fit properly, itches, or is distracting.
Wearing the right square dance attire will not only enable you to execute the dance moves correctly, but it also shows your respect for your partner and co-dancers.
2. Join Square Dance Classes and Clubs
By joining and attending square dance clubs, you will get to meet many people to share the same passion with you. It is also a great way to meet new friends, and through this, you’ll learn to communicate and understand teamwork through square dancing.
Club membership will provide you with new opportunities to be involved and take part in community dances and events.
If you want to gain more confidence in square dancing attending square dance class will help you learn how the dance calls are actually performed, and if you cannot do some steps, you can try it again and again until you master the dance moves.
3. Observe Other Dancers
You can learn a great deal by watching other people dance, and observing how other square dancers dance lets your brain add to the mental maps that you’re already making regarding a dance move. By following other people, you can also see how certain calls are done properly.
You can observe other dancers by:
- Take in a professional show to see how pro dancing is done or visit a local college that offers square dance showcases open to the public.
- Visit square dance clubs to observe other dancers and even copy their moves.
4. Learn Properly
Learn properly by:
Understanding the meaning of the call rather than just memorizing a position. If you understand the meaning, you will do the call from any position, but if you only memorized one position, you will be lost if the call is used for another position.
When a call is presented, it often taught that the boys should do something, and the girls should do something else. While the definition of a call never involves a person’s sex but is instead written for the left-hand person, do something, and the right-hand person does something else.
The definition is what you should remember. If after a call is taught and you’re not sure of the correct definition, ask the caller to explain it to you without using the terms, boys or girls. (1)
5. Listen to the Caller
One key to successful square dancing is listening to the caller and not talking while the caller is explaining something. To do this, you should not talk in the square. Talking while square dancing can also distract the other dancers from what the caller is saying and interrupts their train of thought.
In square dancing, you don’t have to memorize the whole choreography, and you don’t have to remember what movement is the next. All you need to do is listen to the caller and dance what you are told.
6. Know Where You Are in the Square
It is important to be aware at all times what formation you are in and where you are in the formation. You will know where you are going if you know where you are starting.
So, before any call, know where you are. Are you in a wave? Is it a right-hand wave or a left-hand wave? Which wall are you facing? Who else is in the square, and most importantly, who is your partner? Knowing all these at the beginning and end of each call will make you a successful dancer on the dance floor. (2)
7. Keep Going No Matter What!
If you’re dancing and there is a call that you didn’t know, don’t stop and panic. If you stop, you are going to most likely mess up some dancers who need to go to where you are. Keep going instead of stopping. So even if you don’t know the call at all, kind of meander forward and develop a “square sense.” This is the ability to find the empty hole in the square.
One of the best compliments you can get from square dancing is when you break down and fix it, some will lean over and say, “Nice recovery!” So, instead of stopping, keep on moving and see what is going on with the whole square. Your place is there. Find it and zip into it, and you’ll be ready for the next call, and you have not broken down the square. (2)
8. Dance to The Beat of The Music
Calls are designed to take certain numbers of steps. The counts are in the caller definitions. The calls are most likely not taught in a way that makes you count the steps.
Many people naturally dance to the beat of the music, and if you are not one of those people with the natural rhythm, always attempt to keep moving to the beat. It will help you with your square dancing.
9. Practice and Have Fun
The key to mastering the calls is practice, practice, practice, which is known as “floor time.” Square dance as much as you can, with as many different callers as you can and with various groups and partners, and most of all, don’t forget to have fun!
Square dancing is social, and it is an easy way to meet new people without the pressure of having to think of things to talk to break the ice. So enjoy enhancing your square dancing skills and have fun making new friends to socialize with.
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