Dance Etiquette

14 Mar
Dance Etiquette

Let’s get right to it ..
Or at least GET IT RIGHT!!!

  • Smart
  • Educated
  • Great job
  • Well spoken
  • Religiously attends classes
  • Punctual and present at most Latin parties
  • Dances well
  • Could lead well
  • Could follow well

I’ve pointed out the basic attributes that we all as beginners, intermediate and advanced dancers deem necessary to be part of this fantastic controversial, exciting, Latin dance family. Yet we still question ourselves. Why am I not being asked to dance or why am I being subtly rejected when I ask someone to dance?

Let’s get straight to it! I’ve learnt in the 8 years that I’ve been a part of this dynamic dance community that our reasons for dancing are common.

We are all here to give life to at least one aspect of our lives. God alone knows our true self is on the dance floor and not sitting behind the office desk counting the minutes for work to end.

We are able to have control over something that we love that no one else in our other circles can appreciate and …

We carry the invisible trophy of being a ‘Latin Dancer!!

No that wasn’t it?

OK OK the generic response would be, ”We are all here to have fun and love dancing because it takes our mind away from our troubles blah blah blah!”

Yes! But, inside we really truly love this thing because WE FEEL GOOD!!!

The thrill of entering into an atmosphere of thirsty dancers with this burning desire to physically ‘move our bodies and let our hearts be free’ is a catharsis in itself… So why not you?

Over the years I’ve heard shared stories and opinions and even had my own experiences where I’ve recognized that many of us have forgotten some important things for example;

Respecting others

Understanding your body language

Personal Hygiene

Personality and Attitude. 

If carefully paid attention to some we may solve many of the problems faced and will definitely experience that sense of belonging desired! Take some notes … truly ask yourself if some situations are relatable.

The importance of Respect

1. Stay in your lane! Respect when someone refuses to dance with you. They may be changing shoes, or just came off the dance floor and declined to ‘ketch themselves’.. Or the style of dance either kizomba or bachata for example is too personal for them..Please respect that and do not take it personally. If they have to refuse twice and three times chances are they do not want to dance with you. Please do not force the point. You’d then become a dancing stalker who is very annoying … DON’T DO IT!

2. Have respect for people’s relationships/friendships and your own! If you see a man or woman come into an event with their better half please show respect and have control when asking the man or woman to dance, moreso if they are in a committed relationship or married, respect for your partners. You would avoid many problems!

3. Have respect for other dancers and classes. Bashing others because of your personal agenda or grudge is very distasteful especially when you criticize other classes/ groups and the way they dance. Keep it classy!

Understanding body language

We all know how manipulation of the mind works and as emotional creative people we also know how we use the body to manipulate. Please avoid using it to provoke, tease and have misconduct with a dancer that is, unless you are giving cues or given indication to do otherwise and we all are smart enough to know how that works.

Men please don’t use fast moves and smooth dancing to mistakenly touch and bounce women in areas that your hand is not supposed to go. Trust me they will avoid you and dismiss you for that!

Some women also use the opportunity of dancing to ‘rub up’ on a man… Not because he name man doh mean you won’t make him uncomfortable and if not you’d be encouraging something you may not want including getting a nasty reputation. Keep in mind half the men have men cliques and besties in Latin just as the women do! So be careful!

The importance of Hygiene

Smelly hair, Dancing with sweaty shirts, Burning nose type of perspiration and breath!

Come on people we have to take care of ourselves but we must be mindful to care for those we come into contact with!

Avoid getting a ‘stinky’ reputation!!!

Ladies and men with hair whether real, fake short or long, please WASH and keep groomed.

Bathe! Deodorant, sprays, Cologne, some scented oil..Please use something!! Men and women please be aware of your odor! It is impolite, disrespectful and very discomforting to dance with someone who has a high perspiration and then have to dance with others and transfer that on to someone else. Check yourselves every hour or so. Walk with a small bag of Hygiene goodies and fix yourself throughout the night or even before and after classes.

Change your shirt/ tshirt or walk with a rag! Some of you are not made from alligator skin and you are aware that most of these Latin events are hot yet you dance through every song! It is very uncomfortable to be dancing with someone whose shirt is drenched in sweat! Not hygienic at all!

Tic tacs, mints, gum, Listerine, floss, brush your frame! Solve your breath issues!

Personality and attitude

Whether part of a clique, class, dance group or you move solo. Personality and attitude towards others is very important.

Sticking up in a corner all night will definitely not attract anyone to dance with you.

Be polite and friendly when you and others come out to enjoy a night of dancing. Those with a ‘show off’ ‘I better than’ and ‘too good for’ mentality or always comparing yourself to ‘dem young girls’ and ‘dem young fellas’ PLEASE STAY HOME!

Those with man and woman problems if your purpose is to sour everyone with your negativity PLEASE STAY HOME!

Amrika Mutroo

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