How to Line Dance for Beginners

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As a beginner, you will be surprised at how many line dances you will quickly add to your repertoire. Because many beginning line dance steps are the same but danced in different sequences, at first it will seem impossible to remember one dance from another. Many line dances repeat the pattern on different walls. Often you'll find that your brain is challenged when you're facing a different direction. No worries, just keep dancing. Your brain and foot work will eventually come together.

How to Line Dance for Beginners
(Dana Dowling/Demand Media)

Things You'll Need

  • Cowboy boots
  • Leather-sole shoes
Step 1

Find a teacher. Check for line dance classes at night clubs, community centers, senior's centers, fitness clubs and even churches. For beginners, it's best to learn how to line dance from an instructor who can explain the basic foot work, break down the line dance steps and outline the basic dance pattern.

Dana Dowling/Demand Media
Step 2

Practice at home using DVDs or YouTube videos. Search YouTube, where you'll find many beginner line dance videos. Look for the signature song which the line dance is best known. You may also find slower or faster alternative songs. Some beginner line dances share the same name but have completely different choreography or regional variations.

Dana Dowling/Demand Media
Step 3

Watch one or more complete repetitions when learning a new beginners line dance. Whether learning from a teacher or online, learn the line dance a section at a time, usually eight counts at a time. Add on more steps as you master each section until you're able to do all the line dance steps without hesitation.

Dana Dowling/Demand Media
Step 4

Keep your feet moving. No matter what, don't give up and sit on the sidelines watching. If your feet get mixed up or you do a wrong step, just keep going and at least keep moving in the right direction. You'll get another chance to practice the step when the line dance pattern repeats.

Dana Dowling/Demand Media
Step 5

Anticipate what steps come next. Once you're comfortable with the entire line dance, practice the transition from the last steps to the beginning of the dance when the footwork repeats. Avoid awkward pauses by practicing the transition, so you can maintain a steady beat.

Dana Dowling/Demand Media
Step 6

Look up. Your feet are still attached to your body. When walking, you're coordinated enough to move your feet left or right without looking at them. It's the same with line dancing. By keeping your head up, you'll focus on what direction your body should be facing, which is important when turning.

Dana Dowling/Demand Media
Step 7

Memorize dance steps and rely on yourself. Just as you wouldn't get caught cheating on a test by stealing sideways glances, it's the same concept learning beginner line dances. Try to remember the line dance steps rather than to follow the person beside or in front of you. As you gain confidence, you can relax and enjoy the music and line dancing.

Dana Dowling/Demand Media

Tips & Warnings

  • Head to the front of the class. Most beginners hide at the back of the class, but this is the worst place to learn. Stand slightly behind to the left or right of your line dance instructor, which is good line dance class etiquette. This allows both you and other class participants to view your teacher's feet.
  • Take small steps to avoid stepping onto other people's toes or bumping into other dancers.

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