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Lead and follow

Lead and follow

In couple dancing, the two partners are called as the leader and the follower. Leading and following are abilities that need true intelligence and cognitive skills. Both dancers of a partnership need a great deal of effort, because it is a dynamic process.

They are very different abilities. The leader directs the overall performance of the dance such as the responsibility for obstacle evasion, particularly on a crowded floor; he's got to listen to the music, choose which moves or figures will be danced and how it do, think about his own movements and communicate the direction of the movement to the partner.

In contrast, the follower follows their leader, finishing the moves proposed by the leader. A dance is much more pleasant when the leader need only give firm, not strong, leads to his partner to specify what is wanted, and when a partner senses body movements that provide as leads. For this to work, the follower must become sensitive and obedient to the feel of leads, and not wait for that her partner will (literally) carry her during the dance.

Some techniques are:


The connection between leader and follower is very important; they need interact with each other. There are three connections: with your partner, with the music, and with the floor.
Connection is used as a line of communication, which happens through the physical contact between two dancers, permits the leader to include the follower's ideas, and work together to create synchronized or complementary movements, abilities and original suggestions into their own styling and collection of moves; all of this makes possible the two individuals dance as one unit.

Turning and Spinning

The manner two dancer's bodies connect through the arms has a lot to do with how turns and spins come out; if the leader is a good leading and between both have a good connection the turns will be less and less difficult. When doing spins, keep your feet as close together as possible. There are so several kinds of spins, spins on both feet, spins on one foot, spins changing weight during the spin, singles, doubles, triples, hook behind and spin.

Weight transfer

For couple dancers, the simple technique for a leader to communicate a dance step to a follower is using weight transfers.


Hijacking consist that the follower steals the lead and they reverse functions for some time. Hijacking is also called "lead stealing"; it needs practice and excellent connection between the partners.


This term describe a follower's performing steps without waiting for, or opposite to, or intrusive with the lead of the leader. This is also known as "anticipation" and generally considered a bad dancing habit. May be you think it is similar to hijacking; however the two terms have important differences. One difference is that the hijacking is generally a sporadic "outburst" of the follower, who otherwise diligently follows the lead, while a "backleader" may do this approximately on every other step. The other difference is more considerable: hijacking is an actual lead, i.e., a hijacker does their stuff and watches for the leader to follow, while backleading is taking care only about one's own dancing.

Body lead vs arm lead

A body lead happens when the leader begins a lead by moving their body, which moves their arm(s), and in this form transmits a lead to the follower. An arm lead happens when the leader moves their body in a different direction to their arm or moves only their arm(s) and the rest of their body is quiet. The leading and following dance, especially at an superior level, often include the contra- and contrasting uses of weight transfers and 'arm moves'.

Recovery from miscommunication

Sometimes a miscommunication is probable between the leader and follower. A common rule here is that they do not fight, but they do not stop dancing. There are many methods of the recovery of connection and synchronization differs from dance to dance.

Crowded floor  

General sense proposes numerous modifications of technique: to make smaller steps, particularly backwards, to keep the moving feet closer to the floor, to preserve shorter arm connection in open positions, and to evade long patterns with numerous modifies of direction/slots, unless you can easily break them at any instant. In traveling dances, absolutely evade patterns that have steps against the line of dance.