West Coast Swing


For a complete list of partner dance classes at Dance with Joy Studios and to pre-register, click on the “Sign Up Today!” link below. Once the full studio schedule loads onto your screen, simply sort the “Class Type” to Partner Dance and scroll down to view class names, days, and times.

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The “Welcome New Dancers” Intro Beginning Level class is created to introduce you to the FUNdamentals of West Coast Swing and encourage your success in learning to dance. We know you can learn and we are glad you are deciding to try this new dance!

Level 1 classes at Dance with Joy Studios are created to develop a greater understanding of basic patterns in west coast swing and the wonderful lead/follow connection of this amazing dance.

The Level 2 class continues your education with more FUNdamentals as you increase your pattern knowledge and enjoy greater levels of connection and improvisation.

There is a world of information behind each of these skills. Please note that even if you have heard the information once or several times before, in order to meet the standards you must consistently apply them in your dancing. Any standards you do not understand are good things to bring up in class or in private lessons.

WCS-1 Skills & Patterns Checklist (both the leader and follower should demonstrate proficiency in the following skills outlined below before moving to Level 2):

  1. Maintain a continuous 6-count AND 8-count footwork rhythm without a partner, while traveling.
  2. Step in time to the music, using the appropriate weight changes for the pattern.
  3. Maintain correct frame throughout movement.
  4. Start patterns on Left foot (leaders) or start patterns on Right foot (followers).
  5. Proper handhold, hand positions, and hand connection.
  6. Stretch before every pattern.
  7. Anchor at the end of every pattern.
  8. Understand and demonstrate compression and stretch.
  9. Absorb and Redirect Follower’s Energy (leader).
  10. Waits to be lead before moving forward (follower).
  11. Distinguish between Stretch and Lead (leader).
  12. Understand Continuous Motion (follower).
  13. Proper body position, relative to the partner, through patterns.

Required Patterns:

  • Push Break
  • Push Break with Tuck
  • Left Side Pass – Arm Low
  • Left Side Pass – Arm High (Moving Tuck)
  • Right Side Pass – Arm Low
  • Right Side Pass – Arm High (Underarm Turn)
  • Same Side Whip
  • Locked (basket) Whip
  • Regular Whip
  • Starter Step

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Questions? E-mail us at info@dancewithjoystudios.com

West Coast Swing Short Documentary (Rough Cut) from Vino on Vimeo.