Usually intermediate leads/follows are more guilty of this, often when dancing with a partner they ‘think’ is on a lower skill level, a term I refer to as dancturbating.


Dancturbating : The act of dancing, often to draw attention, while completely ignoring your dance partner.


The best part about this dance is when you completely ignore me.

One of the best parts of dancing for me is attempting to connect with a person through the medium of dance. Often I use conversation as an analogy for dancing and ignoring your partner is effectively the same as having a one sided conversation.

Now I am not bashing on solo jazz/Charleston, in matter of fact I think it can be quite badass. But when you are dancing with another person its a nice courtesy to at least acknowledge their presence. I am also not saying if you are dancing with someone you feel is newer to the dance, only dance vanilla white basics.

If you have some decent social dance experience, then within a few seconds of dancing with someone you can usually figure out as an experienced lead/follow what boundaries a person has a dancer.  Listen to your partner and use that knowledge to create a great dance experience for both of you.

5 thoughts on “Dancturbating

  1. Thank you for writing this. It’s give and take; I find it insulting when people do this to me. Granted, it sometimes gives me an excuse to go right ahead and style my own way (much like “ignoring your ignoring me”), but I still think showing off just for your own sake is rude to your partner. I think dance is about both people involved, with creative input on both ends.

    Props for using that term.

  2. I have been guilty of this in the past, so thanks for this reminder not to do it. You’re right – it’s not big and it’s not clever.

  3. @Lacey: Thanks for the comment!. I think the term really gets the point I am trying to make across.

    @Sam: No problem, everyone (myself included) have our off-days, sometimes due to factors off the dance floor.

  4. That is the most amazing term I’ve ever heard. It is SO true. There’s this one lead at Atomic who doesn’t lead AT ALL. All he does when you dance with him is show off. He once told me that he ‘just likes messing with the step patterns’. He’s pretty much the worst lead I’ve ever danced with, though he’s not the only one that does this. I hate those leads that feel the need to show off instead of lead.

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