The Patty Cake: R.I.P.

Rigid hand, fingers pointed straight in the air. You know this gesture. It’s the motion that invites you in for a “high five.”

It makes you feel good, accomplished, and you slap it cheerfully as if to say, “We succeeded as a team!” But its place in west coast swing has long past.

Most often seen in the sugar push, it is used as a tool to invite a compression connection. It had its heyday in the mid to late 80s when west coast swing was a flamboyant, herky-jerky good time, and appropriately so for classics such as Wham’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” or Wang Chung’s ever-delightful “Everybody Have Fun Tonight.”
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West Coast Swing: Why Group Classes Aren’t Enough

West Coast Swing is evolving so fast, it’s hard not to take notice. Where taps, coaster steps, and a rigid adherence to a certain set of patterns were once danced in a strict 6 or 8 count slot, now musicality, fluidity, and self-expression reign supreme.

West Coast Swing has very much evolved into a language and like any language, it can not be communicative if it is not responsive.
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How to Get Down Without Bringing Anybody Down

West Coast Swing affords more creative license than perhaps any other structured social dance, which is the main appeal of many of its fans. Many of the elements are simply a placeholder for sexy embellishments and musical expression, and it is a dance where personal style reigns supreme. That being said, West Coast Swing should not be a disjointed free-for-all of wiggling arms and accents on every step.
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Is My West Coast Swing Current?

It’s important to know that dances change over time for two very important reasons. The first reason is music. As music styles change, the dance changes to fit the more current style. The very fast, bouncy version of WCS was appropriate for the current music that played in the late 1980’s. “Back rocks”, “tap steps” and “triple starter steps”, as well as large and animated hand motions characterized the dance up until the mid 1990’s.
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What Ladies Actually Want in West Coast Swing

Quickly, west coast swing leaders: what’s the best way to make sure that your follower has an amazing dance?

If you answered, “Lead all of your cool patterns so she knows you’re a rock star,” we need to talk. There’s a much better way to create a dance that will leave your followers breathless and gushing.
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