by Teresa Travis
(Dancesport Academy, Ardmore, PA)
Often, when we are learning to dance, we get caught up in counting our steps. Sometimes, students will forget that there is even music playing!
Once you have mastered a step, and it’s time to dance to music, try these three things to help you improve your connection to the music.
1. Listen first – don’t start dancing until you have heard a few bars and have gotten familiar with the tempo and overall feel.
2. Most music accents a particular (and predictable) beat in each bar or phrase. You can always ask your teacher if you are not sure where it is. For example, in swing, we generally start dancing on the “down” beat, while, in foxtrot, we start on the “up” beat.
3. Try to dance to a song without counting! Pick a dance with which you feel very comfortable and start with just the basic trying to match your movements to the accents in the music instead of matching them to a number.
Music is what makes dancing so much fun!