The new year is a great time to try new things. Here are some compelling scientific reasons to have a go at lindy hop:
- Partner dancing is good for your brain! Studies have shown that partner dancing can reverse the signs of ageing in your brain and help prevent dementia.
- Physical touch is good for mental health Apparently we are living through a crisis of touch. If that’s news to you its probably because you’re already a dancer ;)
- Exercise is good for you! This one doesn’t have a link because we all know its true. Exercise that is fun and exercise that you don’t have to think about doing is THE BEST KIND.
- Making friends as an adult is hard. Taking up a sociable hobby is a great way to expand your social circle and the lindy hop community is an extremely friendly bunch!
Take the plunge its totally worth it!
Learn the basics of Lindy Hop in just one 4-week course!
This course will give you a solid foundation in fundamental lindy hop moves and techniques, ideal for people who’ve never danced before. With small class sizes you will meet a lovely group of people, meaning you’ll have friends to dance with when you come along to a social dance or drop in class. It is appropriate for absolute beginners and anyone else who wants to re-visit their basics
The Fundametals Course is very popular so we run it throughout the year! The next course will be 6th to 27th February
at Dance Studio Leeds
cost: £32 for the 4wk course
For a full list of course dates visit our courses page
Pre-booking and payment required in advance
to register email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a look at this video for a taster of what you can expect on the course:
Jump for joy this Christmas with this weeks footwork variation of the fortnight – the joy jump!
We try to make our classes fun and enjoyable but there’s more to Lindy Hop than just taking classes. Whether you’re in it for the fun and friends or you want train hard and really ramp up your skills here are some great ways to hone your dancing skills outside of class (in no particular order):
- Listen to swing music and learn more about it. A good place to start is Andy Lewis’s excellent DJ blog
- Social dance! Lindy Hop is a social dance so learning the moves in a classroom will only get you so far. In order to really work on your connection, reaction, improvisation, and musicality skills you’ve got to get out on the dance floor and dance a whole song or two (preferably way more!). Locally we recommend The Sunday Swing Set (and btw it’s FREE!) If you don’t have a well established social dance where you are see if you can get the room a bit longer after a class for a bit of practice time or try to find a local venue that would be willing to let you play some swing music on a typically quiet night.
- Travel to events in other cities Even if your local teachers are international superstars it’s still good to get out and learn from other teachers. Because Lindy Hop has never been standardised, there are a wide variety of dancing styles and teaching styles out there and the dance is constantly evolving. So go out and experience a new perspective–see how other dancers and other teachers approach it. Dancing in a new place can also show you that you’re learning a truly international dance language that enables you to dance with other Lindy Hoppers all over the world!
- Watch other dancers Once you’ve got the basics down watching other dancers can be really inspiring, it can show you what’s possible and give you new ideas to try. When you go out to a social dance don’t forget to spend a little bit of time watching dancers that you like. Try to pick out what it is that you like about their dancing and try some of those things for yourself. There is also now a veritable smorgasbord of Lindy Hop videos available on the internet! You can see what Lindy Hop looked like “back in the day”. Bobby White’s blog is a great place to start. You can also catch hours and hours worth of performances, competitions and teachers demos from the past fifteen years or so. Here is an interesting blog post about some influential modern clips or just search for ILHC on Youtube and dive into the giant rabbit hole of related clips.
- Try other related dance styles At first the idea of learning yet another dance style might seem like it would make your head explode but once you get past that point it can be good to be a bit adventurous. Learning other swing era dances and/or dances that heavily influenced Lindy Hop can help you become a better dancer (they’re also lots of fun in their own right). Balboa can tighten up your footwork and help you explore new kinds of connection, Blues is great for working on control and improvisation, Charleston and vintage jazz are great for learning footwork variations, Tap can help develop your sense of rhythm and African dance can help you learn to loosen up and use your whole body.
- Strengthen your core. Core strength is super important for good connection and control so anything that strengthens those core muscles (yoga, pilates, pole dancing, aerial hoop, acrobalance, etc) will help your dancing as well.
- Build your endurance. Improving your technique and connection makes dancing faster much easier but even if you’re on top form dancing three songs in a row at 200 bpm is some serious cardio. Any activity that gets your heart rate up can help build your endurance–things like running, swimming, football and Zumba
- Invest in some decent dance shoes. This doesn’t have to be a costly effort but if you’re still wearing your Doc Martins to class getting a pair of shoes specifically for dancing could make a big difference. Check out our recent blog about shoes for some good options to fit all budgets.
The swingout is probably the most iconic lindy hop move but it’s not the easiest nut to crack. Ask any teacher when they perfected their swingout and most will tell you that they are still working on it. Whether you’ve just begun your lindy journey or have been taking classes for a few months we’ll help you get your swingout on track with lots of tips on both technique and styling.
Wednesday, 6th-27th February
8:30 – 9:30pm at The Dance Studio Leeds
£32 whole course
No partner required but pre-booking is essential. To book your place email email@example.com or fill in our webform
The course will go over the basic shape of a swingout and progress to more in-depth technique, styling, and a couple of variations to spice things up a bit. As usual with our courses numbers will be limited so we can give you personal feedback on what you need to make your swingout awesome.
This course is a good follow on from our Fundamentals Course for those who are feeling confident with the basics. It’s also a great course for those who have had a go at swingouts but want to delve a bit deeper and really work on improving their technique, learn to dance faster and add some styling (swivels!).
The 20’s are nearly upon us again and Peaky Blinders parties seem to be all the rage lately! Learn how to dance the Charleston with a partner just like they did back in the day. Bookings are now open for this beginner friendly course starting this January. Its likely to sell out quickly so get in touch to book your place now!
Intro to Partnered Charleston
Wednesdays, 9th – 30th January
8:30-9:30pm at Dance Studio Leeds
cost: £32 for the 4wk course
A course that will get you dancing this energetic dance everywhere you go. We’ll give you a good number of moves and the technique to social dance 20s and 30s style Charleston. So whether you’re going to a Great Gatsby party or a Big Band Swing Dance–we’ve got you covered! This is a great course for complete beginners or those who have done a bit of lindy hop and are looking for more moves to add to their repertoire.
A bit of trivia: Our Charleston dancers were actually featured in the first season of Peaky Blinders (that’s us on the left) and we got to teach the Cillian Murphy and Annabelle Wallis how to dance!
to register email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Take a look at this to give you an idea about Partnered Charleston: