Code of Conduct
All classes involve partner rotation. This is a social dance, and we encourage the social aspect of the activity as much as the dance part. If you are uncomfortable with that, we also offer private lessons.
We reserve the right to monitor appropriate social behaviour in our classes. If we perceive any behaviour as being disruptive or inappropriate, we will provide a clear warning, and then we reserve the right to eject non-compliant persons from the class without refund.
If someone makes you feel uncomfortable in class, please let us know, so we can help you to resolve the issue.
What do the terms ‘leader’ and ‘follower’ mean?
First of all, anyone can dance either role. All your teachers at SugarfootSwing love dancing both roles, which means we all learned how to lead and how to follow at some point. However, we all have one role that is our speciality and we suggest that you pick a role that you think is a better fit for you and stick with it for a while. Don’t worry, if you change your mind, you can always start learning the other role later on.
Leaders initiate most movements, and are responsible for the generic structure of the dance.
Followers respond to the ideas that the leader initiates, and are responsible for interpreting the leader’s ideas in a way that makes sense for the partnership.
Both roles are equally challenging in technique and each role can be imbued with the dancer’s own personality, as the footwork is not set in stone and allows for a large amount of creativity from each partner.
Traditionally, men used to dance in the leader-role and women as followers, but it is not the case in today’s international swing community. There are lots of brilliant male followers and female leaders out there 🙂 As everyone is free to choose which role they want to dance, also in our classes, not all men are leaders and not all women are followers.
If our classes are unbalanced in the roles, nobody is expected to change roles to balance numbers. Swing classes often have uneven partnerships, and nobody shall be asked to do any role other than the one they wish to learn. We also expect that our students will not pressure any other students into taking on a particular role.
What shoes do I wear to dance in?
- Swing dancing is usually done in any sort of flat, closed-toe shoe. Sneakers, trainers, anything casual. We request that you wear clean shoes that won’t spread dirt, dust, water or similar mess onto the floor (so usually bring an extra pair that you weren’t wearing to get to the studio).
Do I need a partner to attend class?
- You do not need a partner to attend classes. Swing dancing classes almost always have uneven partnerships in classes – this is completely normal. We rotate partners frequently, so you will definitely not miss out on practice time, and we encourage you to use any “waiting time” to work on your own body movement, which is just as important as any partner interaction.
What should I wear to class?
- Comfortable clothing is the motto in swing dancing. Flat shoes, casual everyday clothes. It’s not work, it’s not the gym, it’s not a party. Take a breath, relax, and have fun.
What language will the classes be in?
- The language of the classes will be English or German, or a mixture of both, depending on the language skills of the class participants. Both teachers can speak German and English, so students are advised to ask question in whichever language they are most comfortable with.
What if I miss a class? Do you do makeup classes or refunds?
- No, sorry. If you miss a class, we encourage you to turn up a bit early to the next class and ask your classmates to recap what was learnt. We encourage swing dancing to be a communal activity where we all support each other in the enjoyment of learning. We understand that life throws obstacles at us sometimes, and we like to think that we in the swing community are all here to help each other through it when things don’t go our way, such as being unable to attend one of the classes. We kindly ask that you support each other, as the teachers will probably not have time to give individual attention to everyone.
I haven’t received my confirmation email
- Our confirmation emails are not automatically generated, so we may take a few days to get your confirmation email to you. If you have signed up only a couple of days before your first class, we may not have time to get back to you before the course starts, but you can usually safely assume we have your registration and you should just show up to class. In rare and unfortunate circumstances, we may have too many students, and may have to ask you to start the following month. You can avoid this disappointment by registering early – registrations open at least 2 months in advance for our regular evening classes.
Where can I find swing music to practice to?
- We have created a Spotify playlist of some of our favourite songs for you to practice to.
- You can find it here: SugarfootSwing for Students
What does it mean if the class is “full for followers new to SugarfootSwing”?
- We often get more applications from followers than leaders. We try to balance numbers in class by accepting roughly equal numbers is of leaders and followers. As our classes are designed to follow on directly from each other, once you have been taken any of our classes, you will be automatically admitted into any future classes. Students who have never been to any of our courses will only be accepted if we can anticipate a good follower-leader balance. If brand new followers sign up with a partner, they will be accepted, and of course new leaders will be accepted.