Lessons at Swing Set Lounge: What classes should I take?
Brand New Beginners
If you are new to the world of swing and social partner dancing, or returning from a long break, we strongly recommend you take the drop-in Lindy Hop (eight-count) class. This will cover the basics of posture, pulse, and footwork. This class is ideal to learn a few moves for getting out on the floor and having fun quickly.
Once you are comfortable moving around on the floor with a partner and executing some basic rock steps and turns, you will be ready for beginning series classes. These classes teach the basic steps and variations in each style, as well as how to communicate and respond to movements with your partner. Concepts focus on core footwork, good partner connection, and building progressive skills.
If you have been social dancing for about six months and feel comfortable combining elements of multiple beginner classes on the dance floor with your own flair, you are probably an intermediate. At this point, you are probably interested in learning more complicated moves, improving your transitions, and gaining a better understanding of how control of lead-follow connection makes those moves happen.
Lindy Hop, or eight-count swing, is a core style of swing dance with lots of turns and other fun moves. It uses lots of expansion and compression, giving the dance its classic springy look. Fundamental moves include swing outs, Lindy circles, come-arounds, and side passes. Eight-count moves also form the basics of West Coast swing. Though the typical jazzy styling and bouncy feel of Lindy Hop is much different than sleek and smooth feel West Coast, the underlying steps will serve you well in either dance. We offer a drop-in Lindy Hop class for people brand new to the dance covering the bare essentials, while our month-long classes start with the fundamentals and build up.
Bal-swing is a big band era swing dance that is danced in a more closed position than traditional swing dancing. Taking up less floor space, it can be danced to faster tempos with less effort and intricate styling to a large range of music including traditional jazz, gypsy jazz, big band and others.
If you are new to Balboa, please take the Beginner Balboa and Bal-Swing Fundamentals class. Completed 8 weeks or more of the Balboa fundamentals class and ready to take your skills to the next level? The intermediate class may be for you. The intermediate classes expand on the core moves with new stylings and works on improving lead-follow connection during fast, subtle cues.
East Coast Swing, also known as six-count swing, is a fun and dynamic style of swing dancing seen at Lindy exchanges and sock hops alike. This style, when combined with Lindy Hop and Charleston, covers many of the fundamentals of swing dance. The basic pieces include triple step and double step footwork, turns, and moving together as dance partners. When East Coast is taught as a month-long class, it starts with the basics and progresses to more interesting turns, move sequences, and styling.
Charleston originated early in the jazz era and has continued to evolve ever since. In its basic form, this style can resemble expressive, stylized walking. Danced solo, with a partner, or in a long line, Charleston offers a lot of creative freedom and opportunity to play on the dance floor. Our beginning Charleston class teaches partner moves, but most moves can also be practiced solo if desired. We cover the basic Charelston side-by-side steps, stomps, slides, and kick-throughs. Intermediate classes may include tandem and 20’s Charelston front-to-front steps.
Collegiate Shag (six-count Shag) is an energy-intensive style of swing dance typically danced to high-tempo songs. It may be performed to an equally wide variety of music as Balboa. This style is danced in open or closed position and builds many variations off the basic step pattern. Lead-follow cues are subtle but result in eye-catching movements. Danced frequently, Collegiate Shag will hone abilities in responding to your partner and build stamina on the dance floor.
Our Collegiate Shag classes cover the core steps and a few variations. They are geared toward people who are somewhat familiar with other swing dance styles but have no experience in Collegiate Shag. If you are new to partner dancing entirely, you can participate in this class, although you will have an easier time learning this if you have some previous partner dancing experience.
In 5-week months, we sometimes have a one-week class on a special topic, solo routine, sampler of a new style, or even Blues dance. Topics vary, so check the calendar to see what is coming up.