Salsa Tip #85 : Dance Etiquette 101 - Drinking and Walking

Now, this tip might be for newcomers to the salsa scene - and it could be a public server announcement for the rest of us. Now, I don't think these rules have ever been written down or said - but usually they are implied by dancers, because dancer understand what bugs them. It is just basic courtesy on the dancefloor:1. Never walk through the dance floor - but around it. Now, the only good reason you are walking through the dancefloor is because you found a good spot and you are actually going to dance. Other than that, I suggest (and many others too) is to walk around the outside of the dance floor if possible. People are dancing, worrying about their dance 'slot' and worrying about their neighbor's dance slot. I can't believe the people think that going through the dance floor (to get to one side to another) is easier than walking around the floor. First of all, you are going through a crowd of people that are constantly moving, making weird contortions with their arms and especially females spinning. That alone should tell you… "hmmm.. I might get hit and hurt - or I might cause someone else to get hurt". Not to seem crazy, but I can't tell you how mad this gets me. Because, to tell you the truth, I don't mind that some people walk through the floor - if they understand salsa slot mechanics. For example, wait for the guy to do a cross-body lead to walk near him/her (through the other side). You know this, because as a dancer, performing a cross-body lead will require the lady to move her location (which means, that a space opens up for you to walk through). However, few people are aware of this - so in general, please be kind - if you are not doing to dance, walk around the outside of the floor (so people dancing won't get mad that you have screwed up their pattern or gave them something more to worry about - their safety). 2. Never dance with drinks. There are a few of people (that for some reason) like to dance with open drinks. Now, this might be good at any other club, but I'm not so sure that at a salsa club. People bring their nice (suede bottom) shoes to the floor, so they can do lots of spinning. People who bring drinks ON the dance floor (are usually not being kind) because they end up spilling their drink on the dance floor (making it sticky) and laughing about it as if it was funny. In some cases, they'll end up spilling their drink on someone else. The good rule is that if you are going to have a drink, have it on the outside (but be warned someone can hit you if you are close enough to moving bodies) or having by the bar (where you are supposed to have drinks). Just be considerate - and everything should be good.