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What is ballroom dancing?

So what exactly is ballroom dancing? One thing that can be said of ballroom dance is that no one can really agree on a specific definition. Yes, there are those who try to confine it to several specific steps and patterns, but for the true ballroom conasseur, the beauty of ballroom lies in its constant change and development. New dances and variations continue to be added. The Waltz came about in the early nineteenth century. The Fox Trot, Tango and Two-Step were introduced in the early twentieth century. The 50ís saw new variations of the Swing with the birth of rock-n-roll. The 70ís hustled in an era of disco. And the 90ís have seen a renewed interest in country line and couple dancing. Debate arises concerning these latter social dances as to whether they are legitimately ballroom or not. But this is something for you to decide!

Ballroom dance is also known as social dance because it encourages social interaction between dance partners. While it is a beautiful form of art, it has also at times been an integral part of peopleís daily lives for hundreds of years, providing an atmosphere for men and women to gather together, develop friendships and have a good time.

Lately, ballroom dancing is making an unprecedented comeback. Social dance classes are taught on virtually all college campuses throughout the United States and draw hundreds of students each semester. Ballroom dancing continues to be a main social event for seniors and is growing as a fashionable pastime for middle-aged and younger men and women as well.

The principles learned in ballroom dancing can be applied to any type of music, whether you listen to classical waltzes, disco, or rock. This is because ballroom dancing follows strict tempo. For the beginning dancer, this means that the music follows an even pattern of beats. The two main types of music you will be dancing to will either be in 3/4 or 4/4. More on that later! Suffice it to say, youíll be amazed at how many of your favorite songs are perfect for dancing to a Waltz, Fox Trot or Swing.

The Romance of Dance

Dancing and romancing is once again being viewed in a more positive light. For a while, it seemed as though a quest for independence was driving couples apart on the dance floor, especially among younger crowds. The 1970ís saw a renewed interest in partner dancing when Saturday Night Fever exploded and a wave of disco clubs sprang up across the country. Since then, there seems to be a growing fervor among younger people for couples' dancing. The hype for country line and partner dancing that hit in the 1980ís followed by an increased interest in the Latin rhythm dances is proving that people enjoy getting to know one another in romantic and safe social contexts. Ballroom dancing provides just such an atmosphere.

In Search of Mr. Right?

Ever walked into a night club and felt the weight of the smoke around you? The gawking eyes of scavengers on the prowl as you walked by? Well leave these negative experiences behind. Youíll never have to search for Mr. or Mrs. Right in the wrong place again. Today, people seem to be getting tired of the night club scene - women are sick of getting hit on by sleazy guys and men are growing tired of having to come up with creative one-liners. So what is the solution? Ballroom dancing!

Learning how to ballroom dance may prove not only to be an excellent form of entertainment and exercise, but you may even meet your mate. Countless people have lived to tell just such wonderful stories. Ballroom dancing provides an ideal social climate. Couples and singles can enjoy listening to great music at a decibel level that promotes communication. Have you ever been to a concert where the music was so loud that you could barely think, let alone talk to the person standing next to you? Well, you will find no such thing on a ballroom dance floor. Ballroom dance can safely be called a "social dance."

Click here to continue to the next section of Ballroom Basics.

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