When enrolling for salsa classes, it is common for you to start with the basics which you can easily do by yourself. However, as you progress past the basics, there comes a time when you will need a partner to help you learn new skills and also polish up on the ones which you already know. I will get a bit personal here because the experience I had when looking for a dance partner was not all that rosy. Getting the perfect dance partner can be quite a tussle especially if you are looking for a long-term commitment. That said, here is the ultimate guide to finding the perfect salsa dance partner:
First things first, there are some basic things that you must consider when looking for a dance partner. These include:
For you to sharpen your dance routine, you must be simultaneously available for practice. It is next to impossible for you to perfect a coupling routine if you can never find time to practice together. Therefore, look for a partner who is ready to commit at least as much as you to avoid many disappointments.
- Skill level
It is advisable to get a dance partner who is on the same skill level as you. If you are a newcomer, it is advisable to get a dance partner who is also a newcomer so as to avoid feelings of inadequacy. However, it could also be a good learning experience to get you a partner who is one level ahead of you (that is if it’s fine by them) since this can help you learn new skills and develop more trust in each other as you progress through the levels to becoming a pro in coupling.
This is among the most overlooked steps when searching for a dance partner and yet it is very important. The height of your dance partner can largely affect your progress. This is because coupling in salsa comes with predefined roles where the man is the ‘lead’ and the lady ‘follows’. Therefore, your partner has to be the perfect height so as to make things easier for both of you. The recommended height in most occasions is that the ‘lead’ should be around 1.1 times the height of the ‘follower’. Some ladies tend to believe that as long as the man is tall they are perfect for you. However, when he is too tall it might be difficult for both of you especially when making the turns. Height is a crucial part of salsa dancing due to the arm length involved during coupling. A shorter lead will have short arm length and this might not give sufficient room for you to make perfect turns.
Salsa consists of many options in one dance. These include Chacha, Zomba, and Latin just to mention a few. It is advisable to look for a partner whose preferences are the same or at least close to yours so as to avoid many battles as to what to be prioritized during practice. It is also important to discuss the upcoming competitions and decide on which ones you will both be available for so as to plan and prepare in advance.
Where you are most likely to find the perfect salsa dance partner
- Dance studio
The dance studio is the best places to find the perfect dance partner. If you have not yet already spotted a potential partner, you can just broadcast your quest for a dance partner and your dance instructor can help you find the perfect one since they already know you.
- Fellow dancers
Believe me, you are not alone in your quest for a salsa dance partner. In fact, you will be surprised at how many offers you will get once you let your fellow dancers know that you are searching for a dance partner. The people you tell the better chances you have of getting the perfect one. Therefore, don’t just sit down and wait for someone to come to you. Get yourself out there and let everyone know you are searching!
Yeah, you read right. These days you can find virtually anything online. The online platform has provided the most effective way of finding dance partners. It is a very efficient method since it provides the details of the person such as the age, height, style preferences and other dance related basic information in a short bio. Moreover, some even provide links to their YouTube channels so you can watch how they dance. Isn’t it just awesome?
Finding a dance partner can be troublesome but if you use this guide you will have better chances at scoring a good salsa dance partner. Please feel free to share with us your experience on finding the perfect dance partner and how you went about it. For my sister, she just picked the cutest guy in the room who happened to be just the perfect height 😉
Miriam is a salsa enthusiast who generally loves ballroom dancing. She is also a freelance writer and a dance instructor at a local school. She likes dancing, smiling, swimming, traveling and making new friends. Therefore, please feel free to contact her and send her your feedback or comments in the comments section below and she will be glad to interact with you.