Dance Floor Etiquette


On the Dance Floor
Swing is a stationary dance. However, dances like the waltz or foxtrot are traveling dances. These traveling dances move on the dance floor in a counter clock-wise direction. This is called the line of dance. Sometimes some couples will dance a traveling dance while others dance a stationary dance. In this case, the traveling dancers should travel along the periphery of the dance floor, while the stationary dancers dance nearer to the center.
     It is the responsibility of the couple getting onto the dance floor to make sure that they stay out of the way of the couples already dancing.

At the end of the dance
After the dance is finished and before parting, thank your partner.
     When thanked, do NOT reply "Your welcome." The proper response to "Thank you." is "Thank you." The point is that the thanks is not due to a favor, but to politeness.
     If you enjoyed the dance, let your partner know. Compliment your partner on her/his dancing. Be generous, even if he/she is not the greatest of dancers. Be specific about it if you can: "I really enjoyed that double reverse spin. You led/followed that beautifully!''

Leaving the floor
When a song comes to an end, leave the floor as quickly as it is gracefully possible. Tradition requires that the gentleman give his arm to the lady and take her back to her seat at the end of the dance. While this custom is linked to the fact that it was usually the man who asked the women to dance, it is still a nice touch if it was the women who asked the man. However, it may be impractical on a crowded dance floor.

Sharing the floor
Avoid getting too close to other couples, especially less experienced ones. Be prepared to change the directions of your patterns to avoid congested areas. This requires thinking ahead and matching your patterns to the free areas on the floor (floorcraft). While this may sound complicated to the novice dancer, it gradually becomes second nature.


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