Planning Your First Dance

Many brides and grooms are choosing to learn to dance to get ready for their “first dance” at their wedding reception. The most common thing that we hear from couples is that they don’t want to just sway from side to side for their dance. Although some couples may want an elaborately choreographed dance, most brides and grooms just want to learn a handful of steps in order to look smooth, confident, and comfortable for their first dance together.

It is very inspiring for a couple that has just learned to dance to find the courage to dance in front of their friends and family. Everyone at the reception will be deeply moved by the expression of love and trust that a first dance represents.

Here Are 7 Important Tips to Prepare You for Your First Dance

Tip #1 — Have Fun Learning to Dance Together

First, and most important, relax and have fun during your dance classes. Planning for a wedding can be stressful, but learning to dance together should be a lighthearted and stress free endeavor. Enjoy your time together as you forget, at least for a while, about your to-do list, the invitations that you must write, and the dozens of details.

Tip #2 — Start Learning to Dance Soon

Allow plenty of time before your wedding date to start your dance lessons. You should plan to take your first lesson at least three months before your date. This will allow time to take enough lessons to be prepared for your first dance. More elaborate dances may take more time.

Tip #3 — Choosing Your Song

Choose a song for your first dance that has a special meaning for both of you. Your instructor will help you to select a dance style that suits your song. Most often couples choose a “slow” song which will be great for Rumba, Waltz, or Foxtrot. Don’t worry about the dance style, choose a song that you love.

Tip #4 — What to Learn

Quality is much better than quantity when learning steps for your “first dance”. The instructor will help you to choose about six dance steps that you can practice to perfection. The instructor will show you how to perform the maneuvers with style and grace.

Tip #5 — Planning the Timing of Your Lessons

As you get closer to your wedding date, take one lesson per week. This will help with building muscle memory and will help to reinforce what you have learned in previous lessons. Consider taking two lessons fairly close together within the final one or two weeks before the lesson. We recommend, if possible, that the bride and groom take the final lesson a few days before the wedding to make sure that all of the dance steps are fresh in their minds for the first dance.

Tip #6 — Practice

Practice your dance steps at home. Find five or ten minutes in your schedule to practice together, or even alone. Just a few minutes per day will reinforce what you have learned and will build confidence. Practicing is a great way to spend valuable time together before your wedding day.

Tip #7 — Add Another Dance Style to Your Repertoire

Learn a second, very simple dance style, such as Merengue. Your instructor can teach you a few basic steps that will serve you well as the reception goes into party mode and the dance floor fills with people. You can dance Merengue to almost any fast song. Your friends and family will be impressed that you can dance to more than one style of music. Knowing how to dance to both slow and fast songs may come in handy during your honeymoon too.