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12 Tips for Safe Latin Club Dancing

With so many Salsa clubs appearing around Australia, a night out dancing is a great way to let your hair down and practice all the steps you’ve learnt in class. However, you should be aware of a few ways to keep safe when unleashing your Latin moves on the dance floor.

1. The outfit

First and foremost, to have fun you should be comfortable. This means wearing something stretchy that allows for a full range of movement, as well as being light, so you don’t overheat. Footwear is critical; leather dress shoes for men to allow easy swivelling and court shoes with straps for women.

2. The accessories

Avoid bulky watches, long necklaces and dangly earrings that can catch on hair or clothing. It’s best to keep long hair under control too, so you don’t whip someone in the face as you twist and turn.

3. The attitude

You’re likely to be nervous on your first time out on the social dance floor, but assert a confident persona to boost your self-esteem and attract potential partners.

4. The floor

Don’t drink on the dance floor; any spillage leaves a dangerous slippery patch when wet and a tacky spot when dry.

5. The invitation

It’s perfectly acceptable in a Latin dance club for either sex to approach the other, just be polite. Don’t grab someone from behind or drag them by the hand – catch their eye, smile, introduce yourself and simply ask for a dance.

6. The response

Unless you really are exhausted and ready to drop, it’s a good idea to dance with as many partners as you can. Not only will it improve your technique, but more people will look out for you in future, the more sociable you are at a club.

7. The dance

At first you won’t know whether you’re up against a novice or pro at a social dance, so keep it simple while you gauge your partner’s ability. Pay attention, maintain eye contact and wear an encouraging smile while you get to know each other. If you find that you are the more experienced dancer, take it easy and help your partner relax; if you’re left floundering, just focus on a good rhythm and stick to the basics.

8. The moves

On a crowded dance floor, you should be extra careful not to bump into fellow dancers; keep your steps small and rely on shimmies, body rolls and isolations instead of bigger moves until you have the chance.

9. The turn

Being mindful of others, if you see a space you should seize the opportunity for a quick spin. Men should lead only one turn and keep their partner within arm’s length. Ladies should practice their balance during turns and spotting their partner to ensure a safe return.

10. The dip

Like a spin, everyone loves to do a dip, but again it’s important to choose the right moment. Be aware not only of other people, but also any tables and chairs which might not be at eye level and can cause a nasty injury.

11. The mistake

No matter how good you and your partner are, at some point one of you is likely to make a mistake. It’s best to laugh it off and keep dancing – you’re out to have fun. Remember to work on the move at your next dance lesson.

12. The break

When you are finally ready to drop, take a break from the dance floor to grab a drink of water. Latin dancing will make you happy, but hot and sweaty too, so be sure to keep hydrated.