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Welcome to Abanico Salsa

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At Abanico Salsa we have classes, courses, events and workshops across the South West with a team of experienced and enthusiastic teachers and dancers – and we’d love for you to join us!

Your first Salsa class

As an Abanico Salsa Beginner, you will learn the basic steps and the correct techniques to provide you with the confidence to dance socially. The course gives a structured program where everyone progresses at a pace to suit them and builds up a nice routine to take to the dance floor. No partner or experience is needed and our classes are broken down into bite size chunks to make learning easy and fun.

The knowledge you will gain from the Beginners course will lay the foundations, and prepare you to join our Improver Level classes which will hone your skills and refine your style and technique. As an Abanico Salsa Improver, your confidence will now be growing along with your range and variety of moves.

As with all good things, the Abanico Salsa Beginners Course has limited places and you will need to act fast if you would like to experience salsa the Abanico way!

If you would like more don’t hesitate to get in touch..!

Try for FREE!

That’s right… have your first Salsa class on us – completely FREE!

BEGINNERS COURSE

We always offer week 1 of our Beginners’ course completely FREE with no commitment to sign up so that you can “Try before you buy”.

All you need to do is contact the teacher of the course you wish to attend to ensure they have space for you and to put your name on their list.

>> Contact details can be found by clicking here…

N.B. This is dependant on there being spaces on the course you wish to attend – check with your teacher to confirm. If courses are over-subscribed and you wish to secure your place you will need to contact your teacher and arrange pre-payment.

DROP-IN CLASSES

If you wish to try out one of our ‘drop-in’ Beginners classes (i.e. one that is not part of a course) contact the teacher for the class you wish to try and they will arrange for you to have your first session for FREE.

If you have any questions at all don’t hesitate to get in touch – we are always happy to help…

Learn online

Whether you want to get a head start before coming along to class or a good practice tool our online classes are for you!

All levels – fully broken down and taught – a great support to your weekly classes.

Class levels

If you’re coming along for the first time, or still relatively new to Salsa, you will be looking for our beginner level classes… but what if you have danced before?

If you’re unsure of which level is for you here is a useful guide.

For example: 1. Beginners Course… (Repeat)… Move to Improvers… Improvers… Intermediates… Advanced…
or 2. Beginners ‘Drop in’… Technique… Improvers… Intermediate… Advanced…

Whichever route you decide we will help you to progress as far as you want to go – making sure that you have a lot of fun along the way…!

Below is a description of what is taught at each level, and what you need to know to be comfortable to dance at each level, as well as advice on what to do after you have completed a course or are ready to move up a level.

– Typically 8 weeks

*Please check Classes page to find your nearest venue and check whether we run ‘drop-in’ classes or 8 week courses there.

Our Beginners courses* will take you right ‘from scratch’ – you do not need to have had any dance experience at all.

If you sign up for one of our 8 week Beginners’ courses you will be taught all of the basics of Salsa, as well as all of the ‘Technique’ level moves that you will need in order to progress to Improver level.

Our 8 week courses are designed to prepare you for dancing at Improver level – but we thoroughly recommend that if you are not completely comfortable with what you have learnt during the course that you repeat it before moving on. In our experience we have found that everybody picks different things up at different speeds and we know that it is vital that you can dance what you have been taught without thinking too much as things get a little more tricky at Improver level.

What is required?

Nothing – except a willingness to learn and a desire to have fun!

All those with two left feet are also welcome… we often hear the words “Oh no, I couldn’t come to a Salsa class as I don’t know how to dance”… don’t worry… that is what our classes are for – to teach you to Salsa! We have new students starting all of the time, most of whom have never danced before either – if you want to see what some of them learnt in only 8 weeks check out the video below!

Where to next?

We thoroughly recommend that you repeat the Beginners’ course at least once – all of our students who have done so have reported benefiting massively from the additional practice, as well as the fact that they are able to pick up even more second time round as they are getting more comfortable with the basics. You will progress much quicker in the long run if your basics are sound.

Once you are happy and comfortable with everything that you have learnt during the Beginners’ course you are ready to move to IMPROVER level.

*Please check Classes page to find your nearest venue and check whether we run ‘drop-in’ classes or 8 week courses there.

Our drop-in Beginners’ classes run in a cycle of 4 weeks – but can be joined any week of the year and are designed to take you from scratch each week. Over the 4 weeks you will learn the basic steps, timing and connections – as well as some basic leading & following skills.

Our ‘Drop-in’ classes are designed to prepare you for Technique level and we recommend that you stick with this level until you have perfected your basics – in our experience you will be able to progress much quicker once you have mastered them.

What is required?

Nothing – except a willingness to learn and a desire to have fun!

All those with two left feet are also welcome… we often hear the words “Oh no, I couldn’t come to a Salsa class as I don’t know how to dance”… don’t worry… that is what our classes are for – to teach you to Salsa! We have new students starting all of the time, most of whom have never danced before either.

Where to next?

We recommend that you remain in the Beginners’ classes until you are really comfortable with the basics as these will not be re-taught at the higher levels.

Once you are comfortable with your basic steps, timing and leading/following you are ready to move up to TECHNIQUE level.

Technique level focuses on developing the technique which will be required for Improver and Intermediate Level dancing. It follows a 6 week rotation (that can be joined any week) and covers moves including Cross Body Lead, Open Break, Right Turn, Left Turn, Changing Places, Travelling Turns and Shines/Footwork, as well as more detailed Leading & Following technique.

It is important that you are comfortable with everything covered before moving up a level as we do not ‘re-teach’ these moves and techniques at Improver level – you will be expected to know and be comfortable with them so that we can focus on putting moves and turn patterns together once you get to Improver level.

It is worth noting that many of our dancers who have moved up to Improver (& Intermediate) Level still regularly attend our Technique classes in order to make sure that they are not picking up bad habits – those that do tend to improve much quicker than those that don’t!

What is required?

In order to do Technique level you need to be happy with all of the basic steps, timing and connections taught at Beginner level.

You should be able to comfortably dance your basic steps, leading/following simple changes, connecting nicely on time with your partner and the music.

N.B. If you have attended one of our Beginners’ courses you will have been taught everything we cover at Technique level – but that is not to say that you will not still find it useful as practice for perfecting your techniques…)

Where to next?

We recommend that you remain at technique level long enough to cover everything taught at least twice so that you are comfortable with the moves and techniques before moving on – this is important as they will not be re-taught at the higher levels.

Once you are happy leading/following everything taught at Technique level you are ready to move up to IMPROVER level.

*Please check Classes page to find your nearest venue and check whether we run ‘drop-in’ classes or 8 week courses there.

The “Move to Improvers” sessions are based around an 8 week block of classes that will take what you have learnt in your Beginners’ course and show you how you can adapt the moves and techniques that you have learnt to create different and new variations and moves.

We also introduce some new moves that are otherwise introduced in Improver level – the benefit of doing them as part of the “Move to Improvers” course is that they are introduced at a slightly slower pace – allowing you to focus more on your technique and perfecting each new move before adding it into a longer routine.

What is required?

In order to take the “Move to Improver” classes you need to be competent with all of the moves and techniques covered in our Beginners’ course, or our Beginners & Technique ‘drop-in’ sessions. You need to feel ready to add onto, and adapt, what you know – and be prepared to learn slightly longer moves/routines in each session.

It can take 2 – 4 months before you feel ready to attend a “Move to Improvers” class. If you are in any doubt as to whether you are ready don’t hesitate to ask any of the Abanico Team as we are well aware that some people are able to progress more quickly, and some like to take longer in order to perfect their basics.

Where to next?

Most people to like to complete the 8 week rotation twice before moving up to Improver – once you are happy leading/following everything taught in the “Move to Improver” classes you are ready to move up to IMPROVER level.

At Improver level we build upon the moves and techniques that are learnt in either Technique level or our Beginners’ courses.

We use and adapt the moves you know, whilst adding in new ones as well, to build interesting moves and turn patterns that can used whilst dancing. Our emphasis is strongly on teaching moves that are leadable and followable so that you are able to get out onto the dance floor and dance them with fellow Salseros & Salseras.

What is required?

In order to take our Improver level classes you need to be comfortable and confident with all of the moves and techniques taught at Beginner and Technique level, or in our Beginners’ course. You need to feel ready to tackle putting slightly more complex moves together – without having to think too much about your feet and the basic leading/following techniques.

Typically it takes between 2 – 4 months to get to a stage where you are ready to attend an Improver class. If you are in any doubt as to whether you are ready don’t hesitate to ask any of the Abanico Team as we are well aware that some people are able to progress more quickly, and some like to take longer in order to perfect their basics.

Where to next?

Most people remain at Improver level for at least 18 months to 2 years as it usually takes this long to cover everything needed and to get enough practice (vital…!) – there is a huge amount that can be taught/learnt at this level.

Once you are comfortable leading/following the moves taught at Improver level, with good technique, and you are happy dancing socially at parties etc. with people you have never previously danced with you are ready to move up to INTERMEDIATE level. (N.B. Intermediate level is not just ‘another class’ where you learn ‘something different’ – you will be expected to have a higher level of understanding and skill. You will not benefit from joining an Intermediate class if you are not ready – if in doubt please feel free to ask an Abanico teacher).

At Intermediate level we start to incorporate more complex moves into our turn patterns – including double spins and “copas”. You will also find that within the turn patterns and moves that you are learning there is less ‘recovery’ time – i.e. you will be moving more quickly from one move to another without, for example, basic steps in between to give you time to ‘get ready’. The focus is still on moves that are leadable and followable, and you will find that the leading/following is more challenging due to the nature of what is being taught.

It is therefore vital that you are comfortable with everything that you have learnt up to and including Improver level as you will be being challenged more technically and mentally, as well as physically.

What is required?

In order to take Intermediate level classes you will need to be comfortable and confident with all of the moves and techniques taught up to and including Improver level.

As well as this you should be able to remain on time and balanced through more complex moves such as spins.

You should also be able to apply your leading/following techniques comfortably so that you are able to dance moves that have not been ‘taught’ – i.e. you are happy ‘freestyling’ on the dance floor adapting your dancing to your partner and the music.

Typically it takes around 2 years to get to a stage where you feel comfortable enough to attend Intermediate classes – they are not just an ‘alternative’ to Improver level where different moves are taught, they are more mentally and physically challenging and an increased level of skill is required.

Once again, if you are in any doubt as to whether you are ready don’t hesitate to ask any of the Abanico Team as we are well aware that some people are able to progress more quickly, and some like to take longer in order to perfect their dancing.

Where to next?

Most Salsa dancers remain at Intermediate level indefinitely, and for good reason. There is virtually no limit as to what can be taught at this level – it can take years to cover everything and get enough practice to feel happy to move up from here. Intermediate level classes can remain challenging even for very competent dancers due to the fluid nature of the dance – even more than at Improver level new ideas are evolving and being introduced all of the time.

However, once you are happy with everything taught at Intermediate level, have the ability to learn difficult techniques and moves quickly, and have a good understanding of timing, balance and movement, you are ready to move up to ADVANCED level.

At Advanced level the moves taught require a very high level of leading & following skill – including the ability to lead/follow quick direction changes, multiple spins, subtle direction changes, and the ability to continue moving/dancing complex movements whilst leading/following additional complex movements.

Interesting and new ideas are added all of the time and you need to have a very good technical understanding of the dance as well as a high level of practical ability. You are also expected to have a good understanding of both leading & following, and some musical knowledge is essential as you will be taught to express yourself even more ‘to the music’.

What is required?

Before attempting Advanced level you need to be very comfortable applying everything you have learnt up to and including Intermediate level in Social dancing situations. You should be comfortable and confident leading/following relatively complex moves with other dancers in a freestyle situation. It goes without saying that your timing and movement should be second nature and a good understanding of Salsa dance and music is required.

You should be dancing smoothly and freely between moves and adapting your dancing to the music you are listening to.

With hard work, and continual practice and learning, it takes around 4 years to get to Advanced level – most Salsa dancers are happy remaining at Intermediate level as there is so much at that level, and you can have great fun with the skills & moves that you learn there… it is great fun dancing at Advanced level but much harder work is required to get there.

Where to next?

The world is your oyster!

FAQ

Salsa is one of the most popular and widely danced Latin American partner dances in the world. Come along to a whole evenings entertainment, we have something for everyone. Starting with beginners we will help you progress to become an accomplished dancer. The short free style between the classes gives you the opportunity to practice what you have learnt, have a drink at the bar and relax and socialise in a friendly atmosphere. This is more than just a dance class- it’s a way of life!!

No, you do not need a partner as we rotate people throughout the classes. Rotating partners through the class is a great way to meet new people – and perfect your dancing.

There are no rules on what to wear, however, you might find it useful to wear shoes with a smooth sole to enable you to spin and clothes which let you move freely.

Anyone and everyone!  But please note that our evening classes are for over 18s only.

No, anyone with basic mobility can join in our classes. And it’s a great way to get fitter too. Remember, salsa is all about having fun and many people find that socially based exercise suits them best!

Absolutely not! Abanico Salsa is here to help you learn and have fun at the same time, even if you have no sense of rhythm and two left feet.

Check our individual class pages for weekly class prices. The evening’s fee includes our classes and the free dancing. Alternatively you can make a saving by purchasing a book of 10 entrance vouchers or by enrolling on one of our courses.

At Abanico Salsa we pride ourselves in being able to develop our students into confident dancers. To achieve this, we provide an 8-week Beginners Programme which has been specifically designed with your individual needs in mind.

The beginners course will support you from your very first steps through to having the confidence to relax on the dance floor and complete your debut dance routine – that magical moment!

Any regular exercise that gets the heart pumping can reduce blood pressure and strengthen the heart. Regular exercise can also reduce cholesterol levels and can cut your risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and osteoporosis.

Exercise burns up adrenaline and produces helpful chemicals and positive feelings, especially if you feel stressed.

You can have a drink, relax and unwind after a hard day at work.

Salsa is a social dance and you will meet many new friends and like minded people. As salsa is an internationally recognised language you will be able to dance with other people from all over the world. From Plymouth to Puerto Rico, Dartmouth to Dubai and Bristol to Barcelona……. the choice is yours!

Yes, our beginner’s courses are VERY popular so you need to book early to secure your place on the course. Don’t wait, telephone TODAY! Or click here for our Booking Form.

For more experienced dancers our improver and intermediate classes are run on a ‘drop-in’ basis, but you can save money by purchasing a course card, valid for 8 classes, in advance.

Get in touch if you would like to know more about, or buy, a book of vouchers.

The knowledge you will gain from the Beginners course will lay the foundations and prepare you to join our Improver Level classes – which will hone your skills and refine your style and technique. As an Abanico Salsa Improver, your confidence will now be growing along with your range and variety of moves.

You will then be ready to move onto the intermediate classes which provide more challenge for the more experienced dancers. With more complex turn patterns and fancy footwork we really will help you to shine on the dance floor.

You may also be interested in joining our Cha Cha, Bachata or Merengue classes which we offer from time to time.

We usually have some great Salsa CDs available for purchase at our classes & parties – or you can check out our recommendations on Amazon.co.uk or iTunes by clicking here.

Yes of course, we offer a tailor made party package to suit your needs.

Our private lessons are a fantastic way to improve your skills and allow you to learn at your own pace.

We specialise in Cross-Body style Salsa.

Please do not bring your own drink of any kind, including bottled water, to the venues. If you are found to have brought your own drinks in you will be asked to hand them over. This can be very embarrassing in front of the whole class.

We value the relationships we have built with the venue management and need their support to continue to provide you with the classes. Please help us to help you, by purchasing your drinks at the bar.

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