Question by User californiastateuni
It’s a little difficult to practice salsa without a consistent partner. I notice the great ones have synchronicity to a tee. They must have been doing it for months-years. If we want to get to that kind of level, do we need an ultra dedicated partner? If so, how did you find yours, or how do we find one? I love and actually prefer to dance alone but it also looks better in pairs. Sometimes though, followers don’t have enough time or gusto to get into it deep.
Is it possible to get good just doing it alone?
How did you find your partner?
Yes, pairs that dance together for months/years look great together.
No, you don’t need a regular partner to become a good social dance lead – social dancing, after all, is by definition “dancing with random people” 🙂
I do have trouble sometimes when dancing with different followers because the levels vary
That sounds like a “you” problem.
You still have plenty of space to practice your musicality, timing, styling, … while dancing salsa on an intermediate level.
If your local socials dont have enough good follows, where you can go “all out”, you might want to expand the radius and visit the next bigger city for parties.
I’ve found having one ‘primary’ partner detrimental to making you a better dancer. The only time it helps is to learn a routine for performance or something. You end up covering each others mistakes instead of making the lead and follow better. My GF is better dancer than me and I only ‘practice’ with her to pick up things here and there.
It’s a little difficult to practice salsa without a consistent partner.
What it your goal for practicing? Performance? Just dancing? Yes, if you want to get better at partnerwork, a partner is needed. If you can manage to find somebody to train with consistently, it will be very useful even if it is not the same person every time. And if you do find a more permanent training partner, it usually makes organizing much easier, which can be a lot of hassle.
A dedicated training partner also makes it easier to drill down on one thing. Polishing of patterns and such. It might not make you the best lead because you both get used to each other and can predict how things go.
You can find training partners by talking to people at parties. They may first assume you are doing a creepy surprise date thing. Don’t do that. Don’t be that guy. Alternatively talk to people at your dance school.
Just going to say that one context where I’ve been approached to be someone’s training partner is when they want to perform or compete in a show/event for pairs. I have said no as I am not interested in shows/events. But if you see a competition coming up maybe look into it and see if there is anyone wanting to compete who is lacking a partner.
I get by with socials and classes though (some private, mostly group now). I have a lot of fun and get compliments from my follows, so it works for me. I got to 2 or 3 socials a week.
“Sometimes though, followers don’t have enough time or gusto to get into it deep.”
Same goes for leaders….
I don’t have a regular partner for salsa, but I do have one for Kizomba. He approached me after we danced during social and asked if I’d like to train with him on a regular basis, I guess this is a good way, because you can already tell that there’s good connection.
I also had other regular partners, most of them from dance classes, but in the end you have to see if the learning curve is similar. One of my former partners started out on a lower level than me but he invested insane amount of times practicing, something I could not do. In that case it is best to separate as training buddies.
tbh I am not sure If I get your question.
What do you mean by “prefer to dance alone”? You mean footwork?
What is your level right now?
The “normal” progress, most of time, is salsa classes and socials. If you want to try something new, repeat stuff from the classes or practice for e.g. the next level of salsa classes, having a few follows you can practice with can help a lot.
After you have reached an above intermediate level, go and visit workshops, congresses, … all around the world.
Its always inspiring to see people, who have never met before, dancing with such a great “synchronicity”. And you will meet a lot of really great dancers while doing it. And if you have the chance, make sure to ask the professional teachers on the socials for a dance.
Generally, if you are good enough, you can always join a local dance performance team.
What are your goals?
It sounds like you want to be able to dance perfectly with 1 person. In my opinion, that only makes sense if you perform or compete on a national(+) level.
I normally have 2 or 3 regular practice partners, plus a few semi regulars. I just pay attention in classes, see who feels natural to dance with, who I think has potential. Then I approach them afterward, we swap numbers, and then rent some studio time. Generally we become firm friends and we will practice at one of our places. I’ve had a couple I didn’t gel with, but not many, I try to get to know them a bit first these days and make better choices.
I’m always encouraging the new leads to find somebody they get on with and start practicing with them regularly, but most don’t. I think the drop out rate in the higher level classes would be lower if they did; it must be very hard for them to get much out of classes with drilling that weeks lesson.
It’s always a sad day when one of your regulars moves cities or something.
Classes and socials at a local dance studio. I find it difficult to find a motivated partner unless you both want to compete or preform.
The results of dancing almost entirely with one person will be like the results of incest. It might work out if they’re really good but I still wouldn’t count on it much.