Learning Multiple Dance Styles
We have often been asked by students if learning multiple dance styles is beneficial? Our answer is always “yes”. To us it’s not a question of if you should, it’s a question of when you should.
Most of the best dancers we know are trained in many styles of dance and they all agree that learning multiple styles has helped them profoundly.
If you are learning to dance for the first time, it’s a good idea to focus on one style for a while. There are already going to be so many things for you to learn with just one style, taking on two or more may not be beneficial at first.
In your first few months learning to dance you will be learning about timing, basic dance technique, partner connection, footwork, arm work, body movement, music, and a whole bunch of generic dance concepts as well as the particular dance style you are learning. So we advise you give yourself a break and focus on one style for a while.
We suggest that beginner dancers don’t attempt to learn more than one style until they have done classes in their first style for about six months. This should be long enough to become confident in that style and have a grasp of basic dance concepts.
So when is it a good time to learn more than one style?
Although you can start another style at any time, the longer you study only one dance style, the more difficult it will be to move into another style. This is mainly because it is harder to go back to being a beginner in a new style, having achieved a certain level in your first style. Technically there is no reason you can’t do it, it is just more psychologically challenging.
Over time as you pick up more dance styles you will find yourself at various levels of capability in these styles. You will be confident in your main styles, and it becomes easier to be a beginner again in a new style.
A note about Ballroom and Country-Western Dances
Ballroom dancing and Country-Western dancing is traditionally taught as a collection of styles, even to beginners.
Check out our Dance Style Guide for more information about these styles.
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