I remember my first few social dances – Awkward, confused and scared. I don’t know whether it was all the people around me dancing much better, the fact that I was dancing with the opposite sex for the first time or me trying to frantically remember the two – three steps I had learnt in the previous classes.
After all these years of social dancing, I can tell you that it was definitely a combination of all of them. I didn’t plan to continue Latin dancing; I developed my interest gradually through social dancing. It has been a constant fight between doing new moves, staying on beat and trying not to seem creepy and awkward.
To all the new guy dancers out there, having their first few social dances, I would like to say it gets better. If you have a bad night, don’t let it get to your head. Keep true to the music, practice your basics and eventually all of this will become as natural as walking to you.
When most boys / men start social dancing, we have the fear of being rejected above everything else. Apart from the few classes we have taken to understand the basic steps, nothing in our lives prepares for the moments where we have to walk up to total strangers, ask them for a dance and make them feel comfortable while we ourselves are a complete nervous wreck. It is very easy to say that it’s the Leader’s job to make the Follower feel comfortable but what is usually not thought or talked about is the state of mind the inexperienced leaders are in while dancing.
To all the Followers out there, I request you to give a couple of dances of your night to someone who has just started dancing. I can guarantee you that the beginner is putting more effort in getting his two – three steps correct than the advanced dancer for his hundred. The more you encourage social dancing for the beginners, the better partners you get to dance with eventually.
At the end I would just like to say that not all of us have creepy intentions, some of us just don’t know what to do or how to be when we start out !
Founder / Principal Instructor
Latin Dreamers Dance Project