(https://www.swingdance.la/secrets-to-swing-dancing-well/) – excerpted
Go social dancing as often as possible!
Just taking a lesson once a week won’t cut it. You’ll forget everything you learned before the next lesson. You should go out at least twice or three times a week. Check this site’s Lindy Calendar and Lindy map to find events near you.
Take lessons – especially private lessons!
It’s true that some great dancers just learned by going out and having people teach them (more follows than leads), but I think lessons are always helpful and sometimes crucial depending on your natural dancing ability. And don’t just take lessons from one teacher – try many teachers and learn many styles.
Concentrate on learning the basics.
Also, new swing dancers tend to take big steps, especially on the rock-step. Take small steps! Second, avoid rushing. Beginners are usually nervous and rush through moves. Take the all of the allocated beats to finish your move (you have more time than you think!). If you are a follower, instead of learning a bunch of moves, learn how to follow. Then you can do any move that the leader leads. Followers, don’t try to read the leader’s mind and anticipate the move. Just follow what the leader physically leads you to do (along with following the music of course).
Dance with a variety of people – not just your partner.
You need to dance with different people to become a good leader or follower. If you dance with the same person all of the time, you won’t be leading or following. You’ll know all of each other’s moves and will just be anticipating them. Ask other people to dance, and accept when other people ask you.
Video record yourself dancing.
Watching yourself on video can be very revealing. It can be painful to watch, but it will help you identify problems and do wonders for your dancing.
Listen to lots of swing music.
You’ll get familiar with the structure, breaks, and rhythms. There is nothing cooler than knowing when a break is coming up and hitting it with a quick stop! Have fun and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.