It’s no secret that Salsa was our first love. It is where Salsabor began and what inspired us to make the school into what it is today. And although we’ve evolved to embrace many other beautiful dance styles, Salsa is still our heart and soul. It’s no surprise that it’s our most popular style.
We love it so much because once you know the basic step of Salsa, you can take it anywhere. It is from this step that our students move on to Mambo, Bachata, Zouk and other styles. It is also from where most of our instructors started.
When you become confident in the Salsa basic, you become confident in really expressing yourself and who you are through dance.
The Salsa basic is the foundation that you can never stop building upon. And we take great pride in teaching technique and style at Salsabor. We make you look good on the dance floor and we give you the tools to hold your own.
So today I wanted to go through the Salsa basic with you. At Salsabor we call it the Mambo basic. You’ll learn this in Salsa beginner, which you still have time to join. And you’ll continue to learn and build upon this basic throughout your dancing life.
You can practice it at home, at your desk, in the kitchen, even carefully in the shower. It can be danced anywhere.
I walk you through the steps below and I also threw in a little video of me and Louis doing the steps together. It doesn’t matter what age you are, you can dance Salsa.
Preparing yourself to dance
It may look like dancing begins in the feet; it really begins in the heart. It’s about feeling the music and moving to it in your style. When you first start out you may feel a little self-conscious until you improve.
We’ve all been beginners one time or another so this is completely understandable. You’ll be learning with other beginners too so feel OK about being a little uncoordinated to start. Come from your heart and you’ll be OK.
Moving to the beat
At Salsabor, we teach the New York style of Salsa, which is all about the number of beats we move to. Music normally has 8 beats in a bar. When you go to most dance classes you will hear the instructor counting 1 – 8.
In a Salsa class, the instructor will count 1,2,3, 5,6,7. However, there are still 8 beats, with a pause on the count 4 and 8. When starting out try counting out loud by saying the 4 and 8 inside your head for the pauses. Soon, the more you do it, this will become like breathing for you.
The basic movement
We always start with our feet next to each other shoulder width apart. See this starting position as point 1. And steps are always taken right foot, left foot, right foot, left foot, like when you are walking.
The first step
We step forward on our right foot to point 2 (which is about a foot in front of you) with our left foot staying next to us. We lightly drop the heel of our right foot and shift our weight to our left foot in a rocking type motion.
Moving from the left
When our weight is back on the left, we step our right foot back to where we where standing and then step back with our left foot to point 3 (which is about a foot behind you).
Bringing it back to the start
We lightly shift our weight back to our right foot and then step our left back to neutral or point 1.
And that’s the Salsa basic. We use this throughout the dance regardless of where we are stepping. That’s why once you have the basic step right you can take it anywhere.
Watch me and Louis take you through it!
From the basic you will start to bring in turns and shines and arm movements. If you were in Salsa beginner 1 last term, make sure you proceed to the next level as that is when it gets really exciting. You can book into beginner 2 here and beginner 3 here.
See you on the dance floor!