Types of Latin Ballroom dances

May 5, 2024
Ballroom: A Traditional Take

Meanings from BallroomDancer.com's exemplary Glossary of Terms.

Argentine Tango

A mode of Tango which originated from the roads and salons of Buenos Aires, described as its passionate hold and complex leg and base moves.


a sluggish Latin party which began as one of two forms of Rumba (Bolero Rumba and Son Rumba), and still shares most exact same figures. Bolero is different from Rumba with its tempo and style of music and activity.


A thrilling, syncopated Latin dance which originated in the 1950's as a slowed-down Mambo. The Cha Cha gets its title and personality from the distinct repeated foot rhythm.

East Coast Swing

A subset of Swing produced from Lindy Hop and Jitterbug, using processed (American design) ballroom technique.


A fast but smooth-moving dance which originated in the clubs for the 1970's disco period, as a modified form of swing. Hustle is mentioned because of its quick and fancy spins and turns, particularly for the girl. Additionally, it is easily adjusted to crowded, club dance flooring.


The International version of Swing. In spite of its quick tempo, Jive remains danced in triple-rhythm.


An adult design of Swing danced in single-rhythm, to extremely fast huge musical organization jazz songs associated with thirties and forties.

Lindy Hop

The grandfather of all of the forms of Swing, known as after Charles Lindberg, and originating on Savoy ballroom within the 1930's as a changed type of Charleston carried out in dance place. Lindy Hop happens to be appreciating a revival with a new generation of swing groups, musicians, and dancers.


A quick Latin party, just like Salsa, which comes from Cuba. Mambo ended up being brought to The united states within the 1940's and 50's and finally modified as an American style ballroom dance. Most of the motions focus on the 2nd beat when you look at the measure, suggestive of Clave rhythm which is fundamental to Mambo music.


An energetic Latin-style march which originated from the Dominican Republic, which emphasizes a straight-ahead 8-count rhythm taken with Cuban Motion. Merengue is now also a subset of this contemporary club-style Salsa dances.

Nightclub Two-Step

An easy-going social dance, comparable in movement on Bossa Nova, initially introduced inside 80's by Buddy Schwimmer and popular among the western Coast Swing audience. Nightclub 2-Step is usually danced to medium-tempo pop love songs and M.O.R., making use of combinations of Slow-Quick-Quick and Quick-Quick-Slow rhythms.

Paso Doble

a remarkable French-Spanish Flamenco-style march danced in 2/4 time, with man portraying the matador in a bullfight, the girl as their cape. Paso Doble is generally danced to Espana Cani, the Spanish Gypsy Dance.

Source: ballroom.union.rpi.edu
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