We have all experienced it! A wonderful realization, that a ballroom dance studio is a pretty extraordinary place, and everyone who dances automatically fall into this category.
The question is, does ballroom dancing make you different or does ballroom dancing only attract certain people?
First, let’s look at the differences:
The best dancing requires emotions and expressions, subsequently bringing out emotions and expressions back. Dancing every day or, several times a week, will surely make you more comfortable with personal self expression. If emotions make you uncomfortable, you might still enjoy dancing but may not get as immersed as some others. It is truly awesome however, to see people who think they are not comfortable with expressing their feelings, become more comfortable over time.
When you dance, you create. Typically, the longer you have danced and the more advanced you are, the greater are your creative courage and expression. Anything that you do a lot in life becomes a part of who you are. It is no surprise then that dancers tend to be creative in so many other ways. Even a simple conversation with a dancer tends to be just that much more interesting.
Sensitivity to Others
Ballroom dancers can often immediately sense emotions and intentions of others. To non-dancers this may look miraculous, but we – the dancers, know it to be a fundamental connection skill. Certainly partner dancing is easier if you can do this naturally. Partner dancing also trains this better than almost anything else. Ballroom dancing is a partner sport. There is no dancing as a couple if partners are not aware of each other in every way. We went more in depth with Ballroom Dance Partnerships here.
Healthy Sexual Attitudes
Dancing can often create intensely romantic or sexual expressions in body movement or with closeness of connection. There is also a great deal of respect between partners in the ballroom dance culture, and a norm of tastefulness in self-presentation. In ballroom, it is pretty clear that a hot dance is just that and nothing more unless there is something more than a dance between the partners to begin with. It is a wonderful situation when unique people can openly celebrate romance and sexuality, with respect, tastefulness, fun and perspective. When you think of it, it is hard to find a healthier balance anywhere else.
Driven and Challenge Oriented
Becoming a good dancer is purely hard work. There is simply no way around it. Few people appreciate how hard it can be when they first start, but committed dancers are definitely driven. But, every dancer has had set backs. Every dancer has had disappointments. Every dancer has experienced pain. You can consider yourself a dancer when you need to dance, but needing is very different that just wanting to dance. This need to dance is like a drug, and a pretty darn strong one.
Liking other people
Enjoying ballroom dancing and not liking other people are not compatible traits. In ballroom dancing you are connected to another person in some way for every moment of the dance. Perhaps the trait of liking people is the most important difference between dancers and the general population. It is also part of the comfort of the studio, and the magic of competitions. People together doing what they love, being who they are, and liking other people is – pretty special. It may be a bit different than everyday life, but it is probably about as good as any difference can get.
In conclusion, it is possible and quiet likely that ballroom dancing only attracts people that have some hint of all of these traits. But for sure, dancing makes us stronger in each of these ways … and more.