Dance Step Terminology
|A step taken forward or backward. Forward steps are heel to toe; backward steps are toe to heel.
|A step to the side with a change of weight from one foot to the other.
|A series of three consecutive steps, usually syncopated within two beats of music.
|A shifting of weight back and forth from one foot to the other, in place. May be either forward or backward.
|The toe touches the floor next to the weight bearing foot but no weight is put on it.
|Other Commonly Used Step Patterns
|A type of triple step where the feet stay anchored in one place, commonly used in the West Coast Swing.
|A lunge commonly used in the American Tango. In closed position, the leader steps back and to the side, lowering into that knee and swaying to the right leaving the free leg extended.
|Cross body lead
|An American Style basic figure in which the man turns perpendicular the lady, leading her to dance forward on a path which crosses in front of his body.
|A foot position that places the free foot in front of, and over the weighted foot.
|A series of four steps, arranged in the following sequence: forward, side, back, side. The sequence may begin with any one of the four steps, and can repeat for any number of counts.
|A step to the side in which the leader and follower remained connected on the side opposite of the direction they are moving, crossing their arms in front of their bodies as they move into a side by side position ending with a forward rock step.
|Fifth position break
|A step to the side in which the leader and follower remained connected on the side in the direction they are moving while opening into a side by side position and ending with a rock step in fifth position.
|A foot position where the free foot goes behind the weighted foot and positions itself next to the outside arch of the weighted foot.
|A step taken high on the balls of the feet, for the purpose of changing of direction and/or rotation, and allowing enough time for the moving foot to brush toward (or to) the standing foot.
|The moving foot approaches the standing foot, crosses in front of or behind it in the direction of the approach, stops close to the standing foot, and the weight is fully transferred to the previously moving foot.
|A break or rock step taken in open-facing position, often with partners moving in opposition.
|A circling action of the free foot and leg.
|Two walks with a touch step in one direction followed by a long sliding walk in the opposite direction. The basic step of West Coast Swing.
|The body leans or tilts from the ankle upward in a direction to the side and away from the free foot. The hips lead the movement, and then the upper body follows. The free side of the body stretches.
|In American Smooth, the ending of most Tango patterns: forward on the left foot, side on the right foot, and left foot closes to right foot without weight. Timing: Quick Quick Slow.
|An action where one partner turns while passing under joined hands.
|A cross step followed by back foot stepping slightly to side and behind. Often done in sets of 3 1/2. Commonly used in Samba.
|A figure or pattern involving the crossing of one foot behind the other.