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Editor's note: This post was originally published in October 2014 and has been updated and revamped for accuracy.

So you’ve finally worked up the courage to enter into the world of nightclub dancing. You’ve had some lessons, psyched yourself up for a great night out, rallied your friends and embarked out for your first big adventure! You’re nervous, but optimistic, and you harbor a few hopes that you might even meet someone special. Congratulations! This is a huge step!

Social dancing

Nightclub dancing, you’ll find, is much like an Arthur Murray Dance Party. There are loads of people socializing and you never know when someone will pull you out to dance. Your training has prepared you to accept the hand of any stranger interested in taking you for a spin, but even so there are still a few things to remember when you’re out in the real world.

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Dancing Breaks the Ice, Unless you Freeze Up

social dancing 1.jpgWhat is the purpose of going to a club? For some, it’s just to experience dancing. If that’s your aim you’ll have fun no matter what happens. Just dance and be happy. For the rest of us, dancing can help us achieve other goals, such as meeting new people. When our goal is to become more social, dancing is the ultimate ice breaker. Instantly impressive, dancing can convince people to give you that all important chance to show them how great you really are.

So what do you do when you get that chance? You have to strike! When the dance ends and your partner is smiling, out of breath and leading you off the floor you have a few moments to use your advantage. Compliment them (if they haven’t complimented you already) and ask a few general questions about themselves. Ask where they learned to dance. Dancing is what you both have in common, so use it! An ice breaker is simply a topic you know you can connect on. Listen and add your own input when asked. Next thing you know you’ll be chatting the night away!

Pay for Drinks With Cash, Tip Well, and Get to Know Your Bartender

social dancing 2.jpgBar etiquette is crucial to making a good impression at the club. Buy the bartender a shot and get to know his name. You’ll find a few moments of kindness toward the bartender can secure you quick service for the rest of the night. Nothing makes you look more in control and suave than knowing the bartender’s name and he knowing yours.

The bar is where you’ll end up with anyone who you’ve attracted with your dancing. Frequent it often with different partners and tip the bartender well when he gives you prompt and friendly service. Just don’t drink too much, or your dancing will get sloppy. The worst thing you can do is get too drunk and undo all the good work your excellent dancing did for you earlier in the night. A little buzz can loosen you up and give you an infusion of courage. 

Don’t Be a Dance Hog

social dancing 3 (1).jpgJust like in the studio, you have to give everyone a chance to dance with everyone. Nothing turns off a potential friend or paramour like being clingy after you meet them. People are attracted to cool personalities, and cool personalities aren’t afraid to share. Be confident in yourself. If you’re an Arthur Murray dance student, you know what you’re doing and people will like you. Get to know someone and catch their interest, then let them go for a while. If they like you they may even come back and grab you for a second dance. If they don’t, they may be waiting for you, so grab them again after an appropriate amount time.

No matter what, be yourself and enjoy your time dancing and socializing!

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is the New Student Director at the Arthur Murray Dance Studio in Morristown NJ. He's been told his voice "really carries" and that he wears fun socks sometimes. He believes in his work and hopes his efforts can help people who are hesitant about dancing to take that important first step!