Over the past few weeks, we’ve been promoting our new studio to everyone who would listen. The response has been overwhelmingly positive, for which we are immensely grateful. But some of the folks we talked to were very supportive – right up until we asked them to join us for a dance lesson. This is where some people drop their heads and turn sheepish: “I can’t dance.” “I’m too old to dance.” “I don’t have a partner.” “I have two left feet.”
Believe me, we’ve all been there. None of us were born with a natural gift for dance (except possibly Ali, but we all suspect she’s from a different planet where superhuman dance abilities are the norm), and we were all, at one point, petrified of standing in a dance class and not being able to follow along. Still, we all came to find that dancing is not as hard as we built it up to be in our own heads, and it really is for everyone.
This post will debunk the Top 3 Myths we most often encounter, and hopefully scare off the evil gremlins of insecurity that prevent too many of us from having a great time on the dance floor.
- “I have two left feet”
Here’s the thing: unless you actually have to special-order all your shoes in left pairs, we don’t buy it. About half of all my students in beginner classes told me they had two left feet. That they were hopelessly untalented and we had our work cut out for us. And most of those people? Are now salsa regulars. We often say that our beginner classes have two prerequisites: (1) the ability to count to 8, and (2) the ability to get on and off an escalator without major injury most of the time. Everything else, we cover in class.
- “I’m too old to learn how to dance”
This might be the most heartbreaking thing for some of us to hear, because we truly believe dancing has no age limits. True, some of us started dancing as babies, but most of us only discovered Latin dances as teens or grown-ups. In fact, some world-class salsa dancers only took their first lessons in their 30s, and went on to become famous teachers and performers. Many of our favourite students (not that we pick favourites!) picked up salsa as a new hobby after retirement, and their energy is making some of us in our 20s look bad. Even where health concerns are involved, our teachers are trained to respect them and offer safe options that take personal differences into account.
- “I don’t have a partner”
Good news: we work very hard to make sure you don’t need to bring a partner to class! Every dance we teach is social in nature, meaning you learn to dance with many partners and to adapt to many dance styles. To do this, we often switch partners to expose you to different types of leaders and followers. We do our best to have an even mix of leaders and followers, so you’ll always have someone to dance with!
Do we have you convinced yet? If so, I hope we see you at our new studio’s Grand Opening on September 15! We have a free 2-hour beginner salsa and merengue class that is sure to awaken your inner dancer.
What’s holding you back from trying something new? How did you get over your fears when you started out? Tell us in a comment below!