Greetings, dance enthusiast!
Feel good about your decision to take the plunge. The benefits from dancing far outweigh any challenges you might encounter! Partner dancing is a complex activity that combines mental, physical, emotional, and social aspects that together are beneficial to your brain and your overall health. It is also a fun way to reduce stress.
We find creative ways to make each class feel fresh, serving Eureka and surrounding communities.
Join us today!
Beginners Start Here
Pick a style of dance that suits you. Think about what kind of music inspires you and your personal goals.
A private lesson is just you and the instructor, moving at your pace on the topics you chose.
Prepare for your first dance with the same care you give to your invitations, gowns, catering, flowers, and music.
View Our Calendar
Click on the class you are interested in to find out more details like cost and location.
News And Events
Find out about community social dance events related to the styles of dance we teach.
View Our Gallery
From our humble studio in Crescent City to today, see the variety of dance experiences our students have had.
Free Tips for Better Dancing
Tip: Picking the Right Shoes
Having smooth-soled shoes that allow you to pivot easily is paramount. Soft-sided shoes allow you keep connected with the floor and keeps accidental bumps less damaging to your partner. Ladies consider a low-heeled, closed-toe shoe for classes & workshops, saving your fancy shoes for social dances and performances. Commonly dancers keep their dance shoes in a bag so they stay free of dirt & debris from outside.
Tip: Getting the Rhythm
Learning how to move in a series of shorter and longer steps is a milestone for every dancer. Your steps become more meaningful by how and when they rhythmically coincide with the beats of the music. Thereby, the best solo practice is mastering the basic step patterns to music of different tempos.
Tip: Don't be the Cadaver
A cadaver is a partner who does not support the weight of their own arms or body but hangs off their partner as dead weight that must be dragged across the dance floor. Less extreme but much more common is partner with a weak frame and spaghetti arms. This is physically taxing for the leader since they have to put in twice as much effort to lead.
Tip: "Can I Have This Dance?"
Smile. Make eye contact. Say 'Hello' and introduce yourself without staring too intently. Leaders extend their right hand and followers accept the invitation with their left hand. Leaders then escort their partner to a clear space on the dance floor. Regardless of who asked whom for the dance, it is customary that the lead return the follow to their seat. Be sure to thank your partner for the dance.
Tip: How to Feel Comfortable at a Dance Social
Many people have social anxiety which prevents them from enjoying at dance socials. Here are some strategies to feeling more relaxed:
- Drive by the venue before hand. See where to park
- Arrange to go with a friend
- Find out what people generally wear so you can blend in
- Set a goal "I will dance with three people I don't know"'
Tip: Practice, even solo, really does help!
Practice a lot. It'll likely be eight weeks before you achieve a basic level, but years before you are proficient. And it isn't just repetition. Be critical and keep trying to improve on certain elements of a skill. Slow, deliberate practice of your own footwork helps you feel more confident when you combine with a partner. Find someone you trust to give you objective feedback on your progress.
Tip: "What Should I Bring to Class?"
Of course the most important thing is a pair of dance shoes - but consider including these as well:
- Hand sanitizer
- Breath freshener/Tooth brush
- Water bottle/Snacks
- Band aids
- Extra shirt/socks
- Shoe brush
Tip: Dancefloor Etiquette
What style of dance one does to a particular song is up to the interpretation of the lead. Sometimes people end up dancing different styles of dance to the same song. When dancing a style that travels around the room (waltz, foxtrot, country two-step, etc.) use the outer rim of the floor in a counter-clockwise manner which is known as the "Line of Dance". If you are doing stationary patterns, stay in the center of the floor. Slower traffic should use the inside lanes and faster traffic passes on the right.
Tip: Using breath for effective dancing
Breathing affects the quality of performance and the state of mind in virtually every physical activity. Basketball players are taught to exhale to clear the mind and relieve stress just prior to releasing the ball at the free-throw line. A deep cleansing breath can calm the nerves and prepare you and your partner to move smoothly together.
Tip: Don't be a Sourpuss!
Shaking one's head, rolling one's eyes, looking bored, unenthusiastic or pissed off are sure fire ways to make sure you get fewer invitations to dance. Try your best to give a positive vibe and you will be turning partners away.
Start Dancing Today!
Dance with Debbie provides quality social and ballroom dance instruction to youth and adults in Humboldt County and strives to support arts in the community though creative partnerships and participation in public events.
Dance With Debbie
Call Debbie Weist
Serving Humboldt County