Its no secret that taking dance classes can be a scary prospect for some. First of all, the million dollar question is…who will you dance with? This one question holds many back from even thinking about taking dance lessons and we’re here to say NOOOOOOO!! Singles can most certainly enjoy partner dance lessons just as much as couples can, with the added benefit of dancing DIRECTLY with your professional instructor on a private lesson. This means you don’t have to worry about your amateur partner’s habits or hang-ups, just 100% focus on you and your progress!
For the group class lovers among us, things get a little different but NOT any less fun!
Finding the class that works best for you and makes you feel comfortable is also coupled with the ever present concern of not having a partner to dance with in group classes. I’m not going to lie, WAY more women pick up this particular hobby than men so yes, there are times when there aren’t enough partners. The benefit here is that you get to practice your skills without having the distraction of an amateur partner to contend with, while still being in a “rotation” (as we say in the biz) of partners that are switching around the room as the class goes on.
There is also the elephant in the room to address here. Group Classes….you and a bunch of strangers learning something new that requires coordination and musicality and closeness. No problem right? Singles or couples, EVERYBODY grapples with this reality.
For some, the thought that others might be in the room doesn’t bother them in the least. These people usually are the ones who also bring the party everywhere they go and have no trouble getting out there and trying new things. About 40% of the US population are found to be in this category. Here is an interesting article about that if you’re like me and love to look at the stats!
These people tend to do very well in group class settings since they don’t really mind the potential observers or crowds.
The other 60% may fall into a range from hermetically shy to mildly reserved. These people will usually gravitate towards private lessons in order to limit the crowd or potential observers to just themselves and their instructor. However, even in this case, most studios will host multiple private lessons in one room at any given hour.
This concern is so common that we could write novels about this….however for the sake of brevity we’ll say two things:
1) EVERYONE feels this way at first. Shy people think that everyone is watching them and judging their abilities, however it is impossible for them to be judging you AND worrying about being judged themselves. This is next level thinking that just doesn’t show up as often as we believe.
2) EVERYONE is learning. You’re in a dance SCHOOL not a dance competition. If you were the best at what you are doing, we’d be out of a job. You come to dance classes to learn how to dance better. Try and keep the perspective and the rest seems to settle itself!
So to answer the million dollar question…without really answering the question, do I start with private lessons or group classes? The social connections you make when you attend group classes can turn into friendships that last a lifetime and build the comradery that takes away the self-consciousness! Private lessons can provide you with the individual attention a group class can’t give you, the individual attention you may need to become confident and skilled.
In the end, it takes a great deal of courage to step into a dance class and we’re here for you and PROUD of you! Dance instructors LOVE new faces coming to learn this magical thing that makes us all so happy each and every day, and we LOVE sharing that experience with you!!!
Take the leap, group or private you’ll be glad you did!!