Latin refers to the Latin languages ​​(French, Spanish...) as a cultural resource for many original dances that were exported from these regions, along with black slaves who brought along their own music and dancing to America. In the context of ballroom dancing is the term formal used to refer to the five international Latin-American standard dances:
cha cha cha, rumba, samba, paso doble and jive.
Often also referred to with the English term Latin American or Latin. Latin dances have a much more challenging rhythm and are also danced faster.

latinmovesWe also use the description as general term for dances that originated in Latin America and the Caribbean and who are danced to this music. Outside the competition circuit we can for the social dancers e.g. still count bachata, boogie (various types), disco, mambo, merengue, salsa, zouk...

Other dances that originated in Latin America and the Caribbean include: Bolero, Congada (Conga), Cumbia, Danza, Frevo, Lambada, Limbo, Reggaeton, Soca, Son, Argentine tango...

With the same origin but mainly developed into its present form in Europe include: Chachacha, Rumba, Samba.

The Jive comes from North America but is because of rhythm and dance style also considered to this dance group. From Europe also the Paso doble.

Despite the ballroom tango originated in Argentina, the dance included in the standard dances. This is because the tango in style does not fit in the other dances.

The rumba is a typical dance of seduction in with the temptation actions of the man to the lady are central.

Latin attitude

Most Latin American dances are danced in pairs. Unlike ballroom dancing is not very tight danced to the Latin American dances in attitude, but the posture is looser and the position one may 'break open'. In some dances, this means that the gentleman and the lady are further apart, like the mambo (a commonly by teachers to this dance used quote from the movie Dirty Dancing: "This is my dance space. This is your dance space. I don’t go into yours, you do not go into mine."). In other dances such as the merengue, the couples are actually very close at each other.

In the Latin American dancing is moving the hips important to give the dances the right character The torso, hips and legs should move independently of each other, while the hips in ballroom dancing stay straight under the fuselage.

Don’t think plank, think elastic!

Compared to the ballroom is in Latin dances more challenge and passion to see.
The lady challenges the gentleman, so they usually do not dance against each other. Except for the Paso Doble we do not go around the floor, but rather dance around each other.

dancehandsMany novice dancers find it difficult to find out what they may, can or should d do with their hands and arms. Especially when dancing separately this may seem like a problem. For convenience, the arms often then are not used, because many dancers have the idea that they do differently ridiculous. But if you are looking for fellow dancers you’ll notice the contrary! It is stupid not to use your arms. So let them not dead hang next to your torso. Til at least your forearm to elbow height. Actually, you can always use your arms to accentuate movements of your body. That is often rather a question of daring than being able. Try it! With larger movements it usually looks elegant to position your hand while pretend holding an egg between your thumb and middle finger.

In order to reduce the chance that you feel dizzy or 'drunk' in fast turns you can fix your gaze on a point on the wall: spotting (at eye level or slightly higher). If you turn your head quickly, your body naturally follows. Look as long as possible to the starting point in front of you, then to a point at the same height on the other side, and then back to your starting point. This 'spotting' avoids you to want to see everything while going around, because that is what makes you dizzy. (The 'spot' is a any place that you fix with your eyes.) This is also a matter of training and habituation.

There still is Latin contact between the lady and the gentleman, but that is only temporary, not like ballroom where it is permanent.
Most Latin dances are also in terms of rhythm faster than the ballroom dances.
In Latin dances is also made ​​extensive use of the hips, the hips are very important while dancing. Every movement starts from the hips.
They give added impact to the dance. The steps forwards and backwards are toe - heel danced, sideways on the ball of the foot.

If the leader in latin dances indicates that the follower can turn to the right his fingers (from the left hand) point up and the thumb to the right. For the left turn, the fingers tend to the right and the thumb to the bottom.


Cuba is the country of the Latin dances like England is for ballroom dancing.

The first Afro -Cuban rhythm that became popular outside the island, was a rumba. Although he already emerged in the 17th century the square rumba was the first Latin dance that was spotted on the dance floor in the West. The basic moves in this dance have the shape of a square, hence the name.

The arrival of the rumba did revive interest in other latin dances, some of which were introduced with little success a few years earlier. In 1945 Samba (from Brazil) and the jive were performed by amateurs. The paso doble, based on a version of this dance from France, was also among the Latin dances counted on competitions, but is less popular with amateurs.

Late forties three new Latin dance rhythms of Cuba came to the West: the mambo, the cha- cha and Cuban rumba.

The chachacha is hugely popular with dancers of all ages.

Walter Laird described the Latin dances in his work Technique of Latin dancing ('61) that he made ​​clearer from 1972 by using organized tables.

"He who knows no fear, and thus do not have to overcome it, can hardly be called a brave man." (Yaël Dayan)
"I fear the people who know no fear. " (Gilbert Cesbron)