Country Dance Lessons Improve Style

Country Dance Lessons Improve Style


Country dance lessons in Houston offer a great way of learning the various styles of country dances. These days, the country/western two-step, which is often called the Texas two-step is a popular dance. It is danced to country music in the one-two, one-two, slide-shuffle steps. Country music with a fiddle and a guitar is most suitable for this style of dancing. It is danced to music with a 4/4-time signature.

The steps of two-step are quite the same as the international fox-trot and most of the dances in Texas are a deviation from it. One has to take two long steps and a step-close step to do this dance. If you move the steps faster, it is the Texas shuffle or a Texas double shuffle.

To start with the dance the male partner has to put his right hand under the left shoulder of the female partner.  To be exact, the hand is to be placed on the upper part of the shoulder blade. The lady then takes her left arm and puts it on the top of the right arm of her partner. It has to be precisely just below the shoulder and just above the bicep. Then his left hand will hold the right hand of his partner in a comfortable manner right at the shoulder level. This is the basic couple dance hold and there could be several variations to it as well. When the dance movement begins the man can start with his left while the lady with her right step. The dance is made up of a serious of slow and quick steps. The quick step is a step for one beat while the slow is a step for two beats.

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The steps of the dance have to be timed with music beats. The timing is 2 quicks and 2 slows and then the walking pattern. When the man steps forward the lady goes backward with her steps. The two-step is a line of dance that moves counterclockwise. You cannot move clockwise when doing this dance. There is also some etiquette that dancers need to follow while on the dance floor. If people are already in line doing the two-step you can always two-step around the outside of the circle. Those who are dancing fast can stay around the outside of the circle. If you are dancing slow, it is okay to move towards the middle of the circle.

Try to observe people in bars and even in ballroom dancing so it is easy for you to learn by watching. There are many festivals held in Texas that have the blues bash every year. You can attend these festivals with family or friends to dance with other participants to gain the harmony in your two-step or shuffle dance movements besides socializing with others.

The two-step is also related to the polka, the Texas waltz, and the jitterbug. These partner dances have a leader played by the man and a follower which is always the female partner. All the movements and patterns of the dance are initiated by the leader and the lady follows through. When the dance is more like in a circle the leader is towards the inside of the circle. Other dance positions related to the two-step include Sweetheart, Shadow, Wrap, Skater, Promenade, and Reverse Promenade.

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Texas Polka includes three steps: a quick step, a quick step, and then a slow step. It is s danced to music with a 2/4 or a 4/4-time signature. It is a very easy dance with smooth movements that are lively, joyous and a bit bouncy.  Dancers need to achieve a swift gliding motion that is well timed to music.  The dance is said to have its root in the European and Mexican dance history and was also seen in Germany and Hungary during the 1800s. Couples take two steps together and then walk. It is easy to dance to a wide range of tempos ranging from 130 bpm to over 200 bpm. The better dancers can dance to 185 bpm.

Two-steps can be started with either the two quick steps or the two slow steps. It all depends on the local customs. The leader always steps forward with the left foot while the follower moves back.  The quick step can be a full stride where one foot passes the other on each step. With a faster beat, the quick step can turn into a shuffle as well. This style has its root in the Foxtrot while other variations include the Shadow dance.

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