Many improver level dancers – particularly guys – feel that they aren’t really dancing.

They worry that it looks like they are just stepping from one place to the next in the dance and don’t actually have any dancing of their own.

At that point in your dance learning, that’s how it should feel…

Your primary job is to lead the lady, and that’s enough to grapple with initially.


Think of it this way:

You’re planning to drive somewhere in London that you’ve never been before.

Now, you know where London is, you may have been to other places nearby, you know certain landmarks – Buckingham Palace, St Pauls etc.

Even if you know London well, you may have looked at a map several times, got directions from a friend, and even put the postcode in your sat nav.

You’ll realise that there are probably several different routes you could take to get there, but you’ll take the one that’s easiest to find, even if it’s not very interesting.

But even so, the first time you make this journey, you’re probably going to be driving a little slower than usual, both hands on the wheel, looking at signposts, paying a lot of attention to which lane you’re in, and making sure you don’t miss a turning.

Every move you make will be deliberate and consciously executed.

Next time you make this journey it will be a little more familiar.

You’ll relax a bit more.


And once you’ve made the journey several times, you’ll do it automatically.


You’ll turn the radio up. Lose yourself in the music and the inane chat.

Turn off the sat nav.

Forget about the map and the signposts.

Experiment with short cuts and detours to avoid traffic jams.

Check out shop windows.

Check out other cool cars on the road.

Check out the people driving them.

Change lanes and cut people up, then bitch and moan when they do it to you.


You’ll take the best route, not necessarily the easiest.


You see, once you reach a level of competence with something, you can switch off the conscious part of your brain and do it without thinking.

When you can do it without thinking, you can then start to improvise and do it more efficiently and with style.

Dancing is exactly the same 🙂

Once you’ve done a new move a few times, you’ll smooth out your movements, your body will arrive in the right place without you consciously knowing how your feet got you there.

And you’ll realise that you’re now dancing and not stepping!