How to dance waltz?

Often used to open the ball during a wedding party, waltz is a three-way dance that, in spite of its apparent simplicity, reveals dance steps and technical actions which have to be realised with precision, in coordination with the dance partner.

Our tips to learn how to dance waltz

  • First focus on learning the steps then practice the posture of the body and the moves with your dance partner.
  • Start with small steps then gradually increase the amplitude of movements.
  • Don't keep your arms too close to your body. Place them at chest level and maintain a constant distance with your dance partner's chest, the contact being made at hips level, on the right side (faster tempo waltz are danced closer to each other).
  • The man's left hand has to hold the lady's right hand. The man's right hand has to be placed under the lady's shoulder blade, her left hand being on the man's shoulder.
  • Realise the quarter rotation (or half rotation) every third beat, clockwise.

Waltz dance steps for beginners – The box step

Leon and Kim will demonstrate the basic steps to dance waltz. They will explain the dance step by step, for ladies and for men, and will give you some technique tips.

Man's steps:

  1. Go forward first with the left foot.
  2. Then side with the right and close left foot to right foot.
  3. Go back with the right foot.
  4. Then side with the left.
  5. Close right foot to left foot.

Lady's steps:

  1. Go back with your right foot.
  2. Then side with the left foot.
  3. Close right foot to left foot.
  4. Walk forward with the left foot.
  5. Side with the right foot.
  6. Close left foot to right foot.

Learn How to Dance - The Waltz - beginner box lesson

This video explains the three-way dance basics and how to move forward with the heels and step backward with the toes. The position of each dancer is clearly explained, as well as every step for both dancers.

Waltz Reverse and Natural turns

Once you've mastered the basic steps to dance waltz, you can approach the higher level: natural and reverse turns. Anderson Moore and Eva Allen will teach you the turns basic steps and the skills required to perform a more sophisticated waltz that progresses around the room. The steps are broken down for a more precise demonstration and the teacher also adds various tips to help you make this dance enjoyable.

Basic Waltz Demo (Music) by Mirko & Alessia

Just for the pleasure of the eyes, here's a short video of a waltz admirably performed by two experienced dancers, Mirko and Alessia.

This article to learn how to dance waltz was written by Cécile Lessard

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