Dance Terms from A - Z

Dance Positions Terms



Apart
A dance position where the partners have no points of contact. Limited to visual leads and follows or choreographed dance routines.

Back to Back
A dance position where leader and follower face away from each other. Related term is V-Shaped Position.

Challenge Position
A dance position where the partners are apart and are facing each other. Same as Shine Position.

Closed Facing Position
A dance position where partners face each other, slightly apart with normal hold. Used for Latin and Rhythm dancing. (i.e. Reverse Top).

Closed Position
(1) Term used to describe the normal dance position in the Ballroom dances where partners are in body contact, facing each other but with follower offset to the leader?s right side.

(2)In a more general way, this refers to the couple staying in a normal frame (vs. open position) even if dancing promenade or outside partner positions. Closed Position is maintained throughout the International Style Ballroom dances, whereas it is permissible to change out of Closed Position in the American Style. (3) Facing partner, slightly apart, normal hold

Alternative holds:
A) Left hand holding Lady?s right hand (L to R hand hold)
B) Right hand holding Lady?s left hand (R to L hand hold)
C) No hold

Contact Position
Facing partner with normal hold and light body contact

Contra Position (Left and Right)
A dance position where both partners are stepping forward on the same foot. When stepping on the right foot, both partners step outside partner on the right side and when stepping on the left foot, both partners step outside partner on the left side.

Counter Promenade Position
A dance position where the leader?s left side and the follower?s right side are in contact or almost in contact, and the opposite sides of their bodies are open in a V-shaped position, leader looking right and follower looking left. Opposite of Promenade Position.

Cross Body Position
A dance position where the follower is at right angles to the leader on the leader?s right side.

Cuddle position
A dance position where leader and follower are side by side facing the same direction with leader?s right arm wrapped around follower?s waist holding follower?s left hand and leader?s left hand and follower?s right hand are connected in front of the bodies at about waist level. May also be used to mean similar position but with different hand holds.

Fallaway Position
A dance position where the leader and follower both move backwards in promenade position.

Fan Position
Follower at a right angle to leader on leader?s left side on an imaginary line about six inches in front of him. Left hand holding follower?s right hand. Leader?s feet apart, weight on right foot, follower left foot back, weight on left foot.

Left Side Position
(also called Left Side by Side Position) Left Side Position is where the Follower is on the Leader?s left side, both facing the same way.

Open Counter Promenade Position
Follower on leader?s left side with leader?s left side and follower?s right side towards each other, slightly apart, and the opposite of the body turned outwards to form the shape of a ?V?. The distance apart may vary to some degree and become more open, depending on the figure danced.

Holds
1) Left hand in follower?s right hand
2) No hold

Open Facing Position
A Latin dance term which is a dance position where partners are facing each other and apart with a one hand hold, a right to right hold, a double hold or without hold.

Open Position
Facing and away from partner, approximately at arms length. Left hand holding follower?s right hand

Alternative holds
1) Right hand holding follower?s right hand (R to R hand hold)
2) No hold
3) Left hand holding Lady?s right hand and right hand holding follower?s left hand. (Double hold)

Open Promenade Position
Much like Promenade Position with Holds 1, 2, and 3. The distance apart may vary to some degree and become more open, depending on the figure danced

Holds
1) Right hand holding follower?s left hand
2) Left hand holding follower?s right hand
3) No hold

Outside Partner Position
A dance position similar to closed position except the dancers are no longer in line. The right foot of the leader (or follower) will take a step forward and to the outside of their partner?s right foot (Right outside partner). This may also occur when stepping forward on the left foot and stepping outside partner?s left foot (Left Outside Partner).

Parallel Position
Means exactly the same as Outside Partner Position. It may be danced on either the Right or Left side and is used in both Ballroom and Latin dances.

Promenade Position
A dance position where the leader?s right side and the follower?s left side are in contact (or almost in contact) and the opposite sides of their bodies are open in a V-shaped position.

Right Shadow Position
A dance position where partners stand facing the same direction, with the follower slightly ahead of the leader on the leader?s right side.

Holds
1) Right hand placed on or just under follower?s right shoulder blade, left hand holding follower?s left hand, wrist, or lower arm.
2) Right arm is behind follower?s back, right hand holding her left hand and left hand holding her right hand. Follower?s arms across front of her body just below chest level with her right arm above her left arm (also Cuddle hold)
3) Right hand placed on or just below follower?s right shoulder blade, left hand holding her right hand in front of the bodies just below chest level. The follower?s left arm is held across the front of her body, either just below or above the joined hands.

Right Side Position
(also called Right Side by Side Position) Right Side Position is where the Follower is on the Leader?s right side, both facing the same way. Right hand holding follower?s left hand.

Sweetheart Position
A dance position where the leader and follower are side by side facing the same direction with leader?s right hand holding follower?s right hand at follower?s right shoulder, and the partners? left arms are extended and their hands connected. See also Cuddle.

Tandem Position
Follower directly in front of leader, both facing the same way

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