People rarely move together anymore, and it really, really bothers me.
Dance used to be a focal social activity in the generations that have come before mine. Many of our grandparents will have met on the dance floor.
Among this dancing, were incredible inter generational exchanges.
Now, we segregate dance into ages, abilities and styles, which somewhat takes the opportunity for social dance exchanges away.
As a result, we’ve seen a massive decrease in people engaging in social dance throughout England. At present only 6.3% of the population dance in a social setting (not for fitness).
A big factor in this, for me, is the closure of our night clubs. We’ve lost over half of them in the past decade, and this has made dance a much more exclusive and illusive past-time.
Alongside this, we’ve curated a world whereby everything Is documented on social media as this is where people seek validation. For me, this increases ones social anxiety with regards to dancing. You’re scared that you’ll show of your moves, everyone will laugh, and the whole world will see it on social media. This creates an immense feeling of anxiety and discourages people from socially dancing. Tense, anxious muscles cannot dance!
In some instance, my job is not to teach someone to dance, but rather to diminish the anxiety that people have around moving. Our sensory motor coupling means that we have an instinctive urge to move. It’s a primal, biological drive that society has somewhat stripped us of.
Although, our social settings to dance in are diminishing, I encourage you to move- alongside someone- anywhere- in any capacity!
And just as my darling Grandad would tell my Nanny, Save the last dance for me!