Country and western dance refers to a variety of dance styles, techniques and moves, usually danced to country-western music. Country and western dancers practice in country western dance bars, clubs and ballrooms. If you enjoy listening to country-western music and wearing cowboy boots, you may get a kick out of country and western dancing.
Each country and western dance belongs in one of two basic categories: partner dances and group dances.
- Partner dances:
Country and western partner dances include both lead and follow dances (in which one partner leads and the other follows) and pattern dances.
- Lead and follow dance examples: Two Step, Polka and Waltz
- Pattern dance examples: Cotton Eyed Joe, Sweetheart Stroll and Horseshoe Shuffle.
- Group dances:
Country and western group dances include line dances and square dances.
- Line dance examples: Boot Scoot Boogie, Tush Push and Electric Slide.
- Square dances include Traditional and Western Modern.
If you are new to country and western dancing, the following rules of ettiquette are upheld on most dance floors:
- Dancers move around a dance floor in a counter-clockwise direction. All dancers must obey this rule to avoid head-on collisions.
- Think of the dance floor as a running track, with separate lanes. The outside lane is for fast dancers, the middle lane is for slower dancers, and the inside is reserved for line and swing dancers.
- Never bring food, drinks or cigarettes onto the dance floor. Spills cause the floor to become slippery.
- Don't bump into other dancers. If you are leading your partner, steer with caution.