House Dance Tips & Moves

House dance is a style that took root in the 70s and 80s, starting in the underground clubs of Chicago and New York. Essentially, house dancing is all about freedom and release. There are no rules, and it’s all about moving your body the way the music tells you to. 

In this article, we’re going to teach you the basics of house dance. Our free video lessons provide detailed explanations from professional instructors. Let’s get started!

How to House Dance

In house dancing, there are a few key factors to consider before trying any moves out:

  • It uses fast/complex, foot-oriented steps.
  • It uses fluid torso movements.
  • It uses a lot of floor work.

There are a number of moves often associated with house dancing, though none of these moves are limited to this style of dance. In this article, we’re going to teach you how to do three of the most popular house dancing styles: The Swivel, The Box Step, and The Shuffle Step.

Let’s move forward with the basics of each dance move, keeping in mind that house dancing isn’t about following rules, but about following where the music leads you.

How to do The Swivel

For the sake of this article, we’re going to focus on the Lindy Swivel. This is a somewhat complex eight-step move, done with a partner. The Lindy Swivel does have a focus on the female partner, who is going to have more complex foot movements. Let’s break it down:

Male / Lead Steps

  • Rock, step, triple step.
  • Walk, walk, triple step.
  • Walk, walk, point, ball, change.
  • Point, ball, change. (Male continues to just walk, until ready for a rock step.)
  • Swivel, swivel, triple step.
  • Walk, walk, triple step.

Female / Follow Steps

  • Rock, step, triple step.
  • Walk, walk, triple step. (During this step, the female swivels out, away from the male partner.)
  • Point, ball, change. (Female swivels back toward male partner. She points her right foot, because the weight is on her left foot. She closes that foot to the ball, and pushes off to her other foot.)
  • Swivel, point, ball, change.
  • Point, ball, change.
  • Swivel, swivel, triple step. (Female is pulled toward male in this step.)
  • Walk, walk triple step.

How to Box Step

The Box Step is another popular house dance move and is simpler to pull off than the Lindy Swivel. You’re basically just making a square with your feet. Here’s a breakdown:

The Basic Steps

  1. Right foot forward, crossing over your left.
  2. Move your left leg back.
  3. Move your right leg back.
  4. Left foot forward, crossing over your right.

Tips to Add Style

  • Keep your arms loose. Feel free to swing them around a little, especially lower to the ground.
  • Get creative. Add some personality and flair by mixing it up a little.

How to do the Shuffle Step

We’ll end with the Shuffle Step, which is a very common dance style for fast music. You’re basically just shuffling your feet underneath yourself. Here’s how to do it:

The Basic Steps

  1. Step together, step.
  2. Shuffle step, shuffle step.

Keep in mind that the Shuffle Step is very smooth, meaning that your head won’t be bobbing up and down.

Get Out There And Dance!

We hope you enjoyed learning how to do popular house dance moves with us! We know that some of these are pretty tricky at first glance, but keep practicing and don’t give up. We hope you feel more confident now to get out there and start dancing.

To help you on your way, Howcast has tons of short but detailed videos on how to dance. Whatever your favorite dance style, know that we have the perfect how-to videos for you. Explore Howcast’s collection of free dance videos.