The Social Dance Company guide to Social Dancing

The Social Dance Company guide to Social Dancing

So, you want to learn to dance, or maybe learning to dance is your way to get fit or spend more time together as a couple. Where do you start?  What type of dancing do you want to learn?  Well, here’s our quick guide to learning to dance socially and a quick explanation of what’s what and who’s who.

Did you know there are literally hundreds of different dance “tribes” out there?  You’ve probably bumped into a few of them on your last cruise, at your sisters’ wedding or at your local club or pub.  Here’s just a few of the best-known Dance Tribes. Let’s start with our favourite tribe… Social Dancers (…. that’s us in case you hadn’t guessed)

Tribe #1 – Our Tribe– Social Dancers

Like our name suggests we are all about social dancers.  These dancers know steps from a wide range of dances (at our studio there’s 6 core dancers and lot’s more specialty or add on dances) and can freestyle them on the dance floor whether it’s big, small or tiny.  At Social Dance Company our dancers learn from the American Smooth and American Rhythm syllabus which is based around easy steps that look good and are very manoeuvrable.   They learn through private lessons backed up with group lessons and socials for practice. These are the dancers that stand out on the dance floor because they look good, know what they are doing and look like they are having fun.  There are no tricky sequences to learn, they have the freedom to dance what they like, when they like and best of all there’s always a dance to suit the music, so they spend way more time on the dance floor.  

Tribe #2 – One Dance or One Style Dancers

These dancers specialise in one specific dance like Tango, Ceroc or Salsa.  They usually take group classes or join a club to learn the dance starting at basic level and then move through the ranks.  Larger organisations like Ceroc organise special events and there are venues in Capital Cities that play music for these dancers.  In a social setting like a wedding the challenge for these dancers if finding music that suits their moves.

Tribe #3 – International Dancers

These students learn an International syllabus and the dancers look very poised and stylish (Think – Strictly Ballroom.)  The dancers typically stay face to face (it’s called being in closed position) and have exaggerated arm and head movements.  International dancing is usually taught through private lessons and students learn by heart a number of steps or sequences for a range of ballroom and Latin dances.  Often International students are focused on competitions and compete in amateur and Pro-am events in Australia and overseas. These are the dancers that make us go wow…but they can look stressed out on a social dance floor and we often feel like they are waiting for their score card!! 

Tribe #4 – Sequence or Australian New Vogue Dancers

If you are a regular cruise goer, you may have seen this type of dancer in action.  These dancers dance as a synchronised group, performing set moves to dances such as Swing Waltz, Barclay Blues or the Carousel. These dances work best when there are a number of dancers performing together and steps don’t always translate to the social dance floor.  Sequence dancing usually requires a big chunk of space to dance properly which can be a challenge for other dancers trying to share the floor.

Tribe #5 – Chair Dancers 

We’ve all come across these frustrated dancers sitting in their chairs tapping their feet, bouncing up and down or waving their hands because they are dying to dance, and their partner can’t or won’t dance with them.  We love chair dancers because they are so easy to turn into social dancers, we even do a “convincer” complimentary lesson for reluctant partners!! 

Tribe #6 – Dad Dancers

There’s a rumour than anyone who can walk can dance, well this group often proves this isn’t true. These dad’s (and mum’s) dance to their own beat, make up their own moves, look a bit uncoordinated and sometimes crash into other people.  Believe it or not these people are great candidates for social dancing because they already love to dance and don’t mind getting up on the dancefloor.

Tribe #6a – Drunk Dancers

See above!  Often dad dancing is impacted by a few beers and becomes drunk dancing which often requires lots of apologies to fellow party goers and partners the next morning

We hope you found this guide useful and it helps you identify your dancing tribe.  They are all great and any dancing is better than no dancing, right?  It’s important to find your perfect match so if Social Dancers sound like your kind of tribe give Social Dance Company a call on 8892 0707 (we are located in Dural in the Northwest of Sydney) or check out our website at

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