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15 Tips on How to Look Like You Fit in at Your Next Ballroom Dance Event

I get it. Ballroom dancing in Edmonton is a new activity for you, and it can feel like you've stepped into a strange new world. It can be terrifying and stressful trying to navigate your new environment. Luckily I can help! Here are 15 tips for making your Arthur Murray experience even more enjoyable.

1. Both ladies and gentlemen should ask their partners to dance in a polite manner. Doing the 100 meter dash to get a "choice" partner would not be considered proper.

2. It is generally considered bad manners to decline a dance invitation unless you don't know the dance, are sitting out to take a break or have already promised the dance to someone else. Remember that all songs at our Practice Sessions last only a minute and a half. The best way to improve your dancing at a Ballroom event is to dance with multiple partners.

3. If you don't know who to ask or want to wait to be asked, make sure to stand near the dance floor, looking relaxed and happy-like you want to dance. If you are sulking in a corner, it is a sure-fire way to scare off potential partners.

4. Introduce yourself immediately upon asking someone to dance, or just after. It is nice to be able to know the person’s name that you are dancing with.

5. Gentlemen, escort your partner off the floor or until either of you are intercepted. Don't forget to thank them for the dance.

6. Never teach or correct other dancers (even if solicited). Leave it to the professionals. This will ensure that correct information will be delivered.

7. Never criticize or blame your partner for mistakes. This includes spouses or significant others. Remember it takes two to tango.

8. Both the leader and the follower should be aware of who is around them at all times, and should assist in preventing collisions. Ladies, preventing your partner from such accidents is not considered leading.

9. If you do step on (or bump into) anyone, apologize to all partners involved immediately, and ensure that everyone is okay.

10. If you have long hair, make sure to pin it because during twirls, the hair can whip your partner in the face or eyes.

11. Use breath mints and deodorant. There is nothing worse than dancing with a partner who is giving off a foul odor. In addition, men and women should be careful not to spray on heavy amounts of perfume or cologne.

12. Observe the line of dance. Faster more experienced dancers should be in the outermost lane, intermediate dancers in the middle lane and beginner dancers in the center of the ballroom.

13. When attending a group dance classes, show consideration for both the teacher and the other students by not interrupting and by adhering to the material assigned. Remember that some students are learning the material for the first time and will appreciate the opportunity to practice.

14. Avoid talking during spotlights!

15. When practicing in the ballroom (which is highly encouraged), be considerate of the lessons in progress. Private lessons should never be interrupted, unless it’s a matter of utmost importance.
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