Balboa has to be one of my favourite dances - but as yet I am only a beginner.

I have attended classes in Staverton, nr Cheltenham (UK) - the teachers are Roman and Bridget. - take a look at their style of dancing.

If you live in the UK and are in the Gloucestershire area-then take a look at this site-ayd Balboa. Another great site for enthusiasts. - Anna and Tony teach in Cirencester. There are number of venue's available - if you have never done this style before - don't worry, it's a relaxed and friendly environment.

I go sometimes to their lessons and their teaching style is good.

There is much to learn but once mastered this style of dance is a joy to watch being performed. The origins of this style are a little hazy.

Some think it came from the Rhumba, some from the Foxtrot, while others say it originated from the Charleston or Shag!

Originating from Southern California..

It developed in the 1920's but gained popularity in the 1930's.

It is said that when people were doing the Lindy Hop they needed a lot of space and as the Ballrooms got more crowded Lindy Hop was more difficult to perform so this style as an adaptation came about as it takes up less space - I'm not too sure if this is correct or not!

Willie Desatoff who came from California was reputed to be one of the best Balboa dancers of all time.

When he saw Balboa danced for the first time he was only 16 but after this decided this was the style of dance for him.

This style has an Eight Count dance and there are two forms of it.

In its original form it is often referred to as Pure Bal and then we have Bal Swing.

Pure Bal is where the dancers stay for most of the time in a close hold with variations with their footwork. But basically moving and turning as a couple.

The close connection with the upper body is most important as this is where the man leads from.

This style can be danced to really fast music - over 300 beats per minute - the smaller the steps you take the easier this pace becomes.

But is can also be danced to slow music - less than 100 beats per minute - allowing you to perform some really fancy footwork.

Bal Swing - allows the couple to improvise.

The close hold embrace can be broken so each partner can do their own thing within reason of course.
There are lots of moves to learn in this style of dance - here are just a few:-

Transition Step,


Crab Walk,



Come Around,

Throw Out,

Pop Turns,


To name a few.

Below a video to get you in the mood. It seems this style of dance is becoming more and more popular.

More Balboa fun --

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