Salsa Beginner Course In Brentwood
Sofa To Salsa is an eight week course for absolute beginners.
It’s for you if you are completely new to dancing, or if you have done a few classes in the past.
Or if you have taken a break from Salsa dancing and want to build your confidence again by going back to basics.
The Purpose Of This Course
My Sofa To Salsa Course teaches you how to move to Salsa music, and introduces you to the basic steps, rhythm and structure of Salsa in a way that you can enjoy.
Many Salsa classes start with confusing explanations and counting steps which put you under pressure and make you feel like a fish out of water right from the start.
What many people experience ends up being quite stressful and not much fun.
My approach helps you to build confidence by working in harmony with the way your brain and body naturally learn movement, and removing the “stress triggers” that lead to brain freeze, panic and paralysing self-doubt.
My goal is to help you to feel good about the whole process of learning to dance.
I want to help you to build coordination and learn about Salsa rhythm by starting with simple dance movements to real music…without being held back by all those stories in your head about having “no rhythm” or “two left feet”.
Left to its own devices and without being put under pressure to “perform” or “get it right first time”, your brain LOVES rhythm and will lock onto it easily – but only if you get out of your own way for long enough.
There are a lot of advantages to learning Salsa in a small group, backed up with short but frequent bouts of practice in your own home.
It removes a lot of the problems experienced by beginner dancers where they get frustrated by things beyond their control such as big classes, not being able to see or hear the teacher, or things moving either too fast or not fast enough.
It also ensures that you’re not held back by others or feeling bad about holding others back yourself.
However, Salsa is a partner dance enjoyed in a social environment, and it is important we don’t forget this, so my course allows you to engage with the material in a way that works for you.
You can also engage with a community of beginner dancers at a similar stage in their journey.
How Sofa To Salsa Works
I’m really proud of this course. I’ve put a lot of time and effort in to produce what I think is the most thorough and comprehensive introduction to Salsa you’re likely to find anywhere.
And from my previous students’ success stories, I can tell you it works.
In a moment I’ll explain how and why it’s so effective.
But First Let’s Look At What Doesn’t Work…
Most Salsa classes show you a bunch of moves and steps that you are expected to copy.
It’s all done to verbal instructions, and demonstrations to numbers and counts.
Typically you get to practice with music 2-3 times during the class.
This teaches you NOTHING about rhythm, or moving to music. In fact it does the opposite, as most people get stressed as they struggle to keep up.
It DISCONNECTS you from the music, and from feeling how your body moves and responds to the rhythms.
But the biggest problem is this:
Complete beginners are expected to partner each other within minutes of starting their first class and this is a recipe for disaster, as neither will have the balance, coordination or timing to give this the slightest chance of success.
The result very often is carnage…and not very likely to build confidence in your own ability, or trust in your partner.
And completely reinforces those false stories that may already be ingrained such as “I have no rhythm”, I’m not a natural dancer”, “I wasn’t meant to do this”, or “I’m never going to be any good”.
The net result is that far too many people give up in the first few weeks before they’ve really given themselves – or Salsa – a fair chance.
And this makes me really sad.
So much so that I was determined to rewrite the book of Salsa class format and structure.
What Sofa To Salsa Does Instead
My courses place a big emphasis on helping you to master movement and musicality skills on an individual basis first. These will transfer directly into partnerwork, making life a lot easier when it comes to more complex moves and combinations.
The learning curve is still steep – there is a lot to learn – but I have spent a lot of time organising the information so it is presented as simply as possible in a logical order.
And with the videos you can always go back over everything as many times as you need.
My Goal For You
My goal for you is that by the end of the 12 weeks, you’ll be dancing freely and spontaneously with the material I’ve taught you.
This is possible because you’ll learn principles and techniques which will help you get in tune with your body, exercises to help you connect with the music – and your partner – meaning you’ll quickly lose the stiffness and awkwardness usually associated with adult beginner dancers.
You will have a repertoire of simple moves and combinations that you will be able to lead or follow confidently, and the spatial awareness to execute them smoothly.
Remember though, that simple does NOT mean boring, and it’s each individual dancer’s creativity and flavour which makes a dance unique and exciting both for them and their partner.
What You'll Learn On The Course
Duration of the Sofa to Salsa Course
The course is 8 weeks long. Each studio based class is one and a half hour duration.
All content is also available broken down into convenient short videos for home practice in between live classes.
My Sofa To Salsa Course Format
I arrived at this format after many years of experience teaching movement to people who didn’t feel at home in their own bodies – I wanted to create what I believed was THE BEST POSSIBLE ROUTE…the fastest, easiest, most thorough, and most enjoyable introduction to Salsa.
One of the things I found was that classes – both in person and online – which lasted an hour and relied on building up choreography, or a routine were not particularly memorable or effective in the long term.
Especially for beginners, whose attention spans, stamina and muscular endurance were not well developed.
So I realised that it was more productive to teach technical, musical and individual movement skills SEPARATELY, and then show students how they are applied to moves and combinations. This way people would have a conscious awareness of the underlying principles behind any longer strings of moves.
My Typical Class Structure
Each class is divided into four sections of roughly 15 minutes each which will take you on a journey through all the moves, steps and skills you need to progress naturally and organically without stress.
Every section will give you an essential piece of the puzzle, presented in an easy to digest bite-sized chunk.
This “recipe” is tried, tested and PROVEN on countless previous students who have gone on to become confident social Salsa dancers by continuing their journey with my other courses, private lessons with me, and practicing their skills in local Salsa clubs.
Sofa to Salsa Class Sections
Section 1: MOVING TO MUSIC
Some simple stretches, mobilisers and full body movement to wake up your muscles, get your heart rate up, tune in to your body and connect your brain to the more complex rhythms of Salsa music, preparing you for the class.
Section 2: STEPS AND SHINES
Shines are the building blocks of Salsa dance movement and will develop your balance, coordination and reaction speed.
They are also a LOT of fun, and directly improve your ability to dance with a partner.
Section 4: SKILLS AND DRILLS
This section teaches you my principles of “Five Star Technique” where you learn and refine specific skills like spinning, body movement and the secrets behind style and flow.
Section 5: MOVES AND MAPS
The key Partner Work moves, spatial patterns and combinations you need to build a solid Salsa repertoire, presented in a way that your brain can file away and recall easily.
Course Dates and Booking Link
Days Until Next Course
Upcoming Sofa to Salsa Course Dates
All Sofa to Salsa courses are 8 weeks in duration.
There are only eight places available, so book early to ensure you don’t miss out.
The next start date for Sofa to Salsa is Wednesday 1st March at 7pm – I only run 3-4 of these courses a year so places are strictly limited!
Book Your Course
Pay In Full
Secure your place on the course by making one payment of £199.
Use the PayPal link below to complete your booking:
Booking Terms And Conditions
- Bookings are non-refundable unless good reason such as severe illness or injury, and only at my discretion. In this case only, they may be transferable to a future date or other appropriate course or lesson programme.
- Instalment plans must be completed. If a payment does not go through, you may be denied access to the classes and the online learning platform.
- If you drop out of the course at any point, no refund will be given and any outstanding payments will still be collected.
- Photos and videos may be taken in order to promote future events and shared to social media platforms. By signing up for the course you acknowledge and give permission for your image to be used in this way.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need my own partner?
Not at all! The aim is to have a balanced ratio of men and women in the group course and rotate partners so no one is left standing around.
Please note if you join as a couple you will be expected to rotate and dance with others in the class – this is basic Salsa etiquette. If you wish to dance only with each other, private lessons are recommended.
Follow this link to find out more about private lessons for couples: https://salsaintoxica.com/private-salsa-lessons-coaching/
What if I'm not quite ready to sign up?
This course is a significant commitment and you need to be absolutely sure you are in with both feet and for the long haul.
If you would like to get to know me a bit better first, and get a feeling for what my Salsa lessons are like, why not book a half price taster lesson?
Find out more about Salsa Taster Lessons here: https://salsaintoxica.com/salsa-taster-class/
I don't consider myself a natural dancer - am I just kidding myself if I sign up?
There’s no such thing as a natural dancer – all dancing skills are developed through effort and practice. Your brain loves rhythm and will connect with the patterns in music easily when you are feeling relaxed and not putting yourself under too much pressure to get it right first time. Everyone can dance given the right learning environment.
Can I pay in instalments?
There are options to pay by two instalments – one deposit of £100 with the balance payment due 7 days before the start of the course. You will need to contact me to set this up for you.
What if I miss a week because I'm sick or on holiday?
Online modules will be provided for the weeks that you are away so you will be able to catch up on content you have missed. If several people miss sessions it may be possible to arrange a catch-up session but there will be a small additional fee for this.
Why Learn From Me?
I was never one of those people who found dance easy.
I didn’t shine in ballet school aged three, or get picked for shows and recitals – in fact I got picked on for my shyness and pigeon toes.
So I understand what it takes to succeed when not even the teachers consider you worthy of their attention.
These experiences made me determined to succeed against all the odds.
I’ve been dancing Salsa for 20 years now, and taken my own learning and the daily discipline of practice seriously.
I can help you overcome all the physical, mental and emotional barriers which are preventing you from connecting with the real dancer inside – that part of you which longs to feel the rhythm and let go of your inhibitions.
What Others Said
“Small friendly classes with a fun and helpful teacher.”
“Small classes with excellent tuition from a patient teacher.”
“We have had other dance classes in the past but never been taught in the way that Shulagh teaches…she is a very talented teacher and we recommend anyone looking to learn salsa to give Salsa Intoxica dance school a go. You won’t look back!”
“All round superb. Cozy and charming studio situated in a beautiful old building. Fantastic, energetic and knowledgeable teacher who provides a complete package for learning this beautiful art. I cant believe how much I have learned in the last month with Shulagh but also how much I have enjoyed the classes everytime. It will be very difficult to find another school so welcoming and patient yet enthusiastic with a keen eye for detail than Salsa Intoxica.”