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How to Dance at a Club

Club dancing is great for single people, couples, and groups alike. Clubbing requires paying close attention to the beat and following along, moving in time to the music. Learn how to dance in a club and get ready to tear up the dance floor with these free video tutorials from Howcast!

History of Club Dancing

Drinks and entertainment serve as the basis of clubbing. But nightclubs, as they are known today, have only existed since the late 19th century. Modern dance clubs feature loud music and alcohol while people move their bodies to the rhythm of any music genre on the dance floor. Club dancing is quite versatile and works well with many types of music. Most of the music danced to at nightclubs include hip hop and electronic music. These are both typically up-tempo and fast-paced, giving a perfect beat for the various club dances performed today.

How to a Basic Side-to-Side

The first thing anyone should learn before hitting up a club is how to do some basic footwork. You can start with the side-to-side, which anyone can do and will work for any music playing in a club. This is a beginner move that focuses on moving your feet and body from side-to-side and easily segues into other dances.

Body Position

The side-to-side will typically have you facing your partner with some room in between the two of you. It can also be performed solo. The most important thing to remember is to bend your knees before taking a step, which will make you fall and rise throughout the entirety of the dance. Start with your feet fairly close together and your knees slightly bent.

How to Do the Basic Side-to-Side Two-Step

Now that you know to keep your knees bent, it’s simple to learn the side-to-side. Step in place until you find the beat of the music and start stepping once you pick it up. Here’s how you can perform the Basic Side-to-Side Two-Step:

● Starting with the right foot, take a step out to the right.

● Now bring your left foot over next to your left foot.

● Remember to bend your knees before stepping and straightening them after finishing a step!

● Now you’ll head to the left. Step to the side with your left foot.

● Bring your right foot over next to your left foot.

● From here, the dance repeats from side-to-side as you follow along to the music!

How to Grind at the Club

One of the most iconic club dances is grinding. This is a sexual dance, but it can still be done tastefully if you know what you’re doing. It also works for any type of music and can be done slowly or quickly depending on the beat.

Body Position

Unlike most dances, when grinding, a woman is typically the leader and a man is a follower. The woman will be in front of the man, facing away from him. The man will be directly behind her, either pressed against her or with a little bit of room in between depending on comfort level. A man’s hands will usually be on either side of a woman’s waist so they can follow along. Both partners should have their knees bent as they move to the beat.

Alternatively, grinding can be performed by two people facing each other. In this scenario, both partners will have a wide stance and will be standing slightly offset. This means that you shouldn’t be perfectly aligned, but instead slightly to the side of each other. We’ll focus on the main grinding position mentioned above.

How to Grind

Now that you know the basic positioning of grinding, it’s important to understand how to do it with taste. It’s not necessarily about grinding body parts together, but more focused on creating a leading and following rhythm that puts you and your partner in sync. Here’s how you can perform the Grind:

● Everything the leader does should be mimicked by the follower. This dance is heavily focused on freestyle and however the leader wants to move.

● Start by moving your hips to the left.

● Now move them back to the right.

● If you’re feeling adventurous, move your hips in a circular, bouncing motion.

● From here, grinding is a repetition of these three basic movements performed in any order. Remember to keep your knees bent and focus on moving fluidly rather than mashing body parts!

How to Dougie

Another great dance to bust out in the club is the Dougie. While it might seem a little intimidating to try, it’s actually quite simple and just adds a few extra moves to the side-to-side two-step we learned above. Breaking out the Dougie is a great way to show that you know how to dance in the club without needing to learn anything complicated!

Body Position

Keep your body positioned similar to the side-to-side two-step. This means standing with your knees slightly bent and straightening them when you take a step. The two added movements of the Dougie include tilting your head in the direction you’re stepping and rolling the arm opposite of the side you’re stepping to, which almost looks like you’re swimming.

How to Do the Dougie

Now that you understand how to move, putting all of this together makes the whole dance quite easy! It’s easier to start by practicing footwork first, then slowly adding in head tilting and arm rolling once you get it down. Here’s how you can do the Dougie:

● Start by stepping to the right. (Head tilt to the right, left arm roll starts going up).

● Now bring your left foot over to your right foot. (Head straightens and dips, left arm roll finishes going down).

● Step to the left now. (Head tilt to the right, right arm roll starts going up).

● Bring your right foot over to your left foot. (Head straightens and dips, right arm roll finishes going down).

● After completing a side-to-side on both sides, you’ll now step to one side twice.

● Step to the right. (Head tilt to the right, left arm roll starts going up).

● Bring left foot over to the right foot. (Head straightens and dips, left arm roll finishes going down).

● Step to the right again. (Head tilt to the right, left arm roll starts going up).

● Bring left foot over to the right foot again. (Head straightens and dips, left arm roll finishes going down).

● From here, the dance repeats with a set of side-to-side steps followed by a double step to the side, which will alternate sides each time.

● Remember to tilt your head in the direction that you’re stepping and roll your opposite arm during the two steps you take in that direction!

Learn How to Dance at the Club

This guide should help you bust a move at the club! Explore the rest of the videos in this series below for a range of tips, moves, and techniques for dancing at the club. 


Tweet Boogie

Always representing the South Bronx, Tweetie is devoted to the street styles of hip-hop. She has traveled all over the world, teaching dance in Japan, Poland, China, the Philippines, the Ukraine, Saudi Arabia, Australia, and South Africa, to name just a few places. Her passion has led her to work with top artists like Jay-Z, Fergie, Shakira and Kanye West. She has worked with Luther Brown as an assistant choreographer on "So You Think You Can Dance Canada" and has done commercials for iPod, Nike, and Stride gum. Tweetie was the host of MTV's "Dances From The Hood." Two of her biggest clients were Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King, to whom she showed some of the latest hip-hop moves as a guest choreographer.

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