• slide 1

Leaders’ Top 3 Dislikes on the Dance Floor


Following from our previous blog post where we looked at leaders’ top 3 likes, today we reveal the findings from our survey of leaders’ top 3 dislikes. We had responders from all over Australia who dance all the different styles of Street Latin, from Salsa and Mambo to Bachata, Zouk and Kizomba.

Previously, we found that our leaders love dancing with followers who smile, with whom they can establish a connection during the dance, and who are light to lead. Not surprisingly, this is reflected in their top 3 dislikes….


Top of the list, voted by 56.8% of responders, was backleading. This will not be a surprise to many. However, some of the comments also revealed that leaders related hijacking and breaking out into a shine without being led, to backleading.

“Some ladies go ape shit and don’t listen or only want to shine, that could be backleading or just disconnecting from me to do her own thing all the time.”

“The best dance experience you can have is when a follower responds to your lead. Nowadays I see and dance with way too many dancers who disrupt way too much the lead because of their own styling and extra moves.”

once they go off on their solos and team shines journeys, their focus changes drastically. Priority is no longer on making the dance work between them and the lead but how good they are doing their shines.”


Coming in at second place, with a score of 35.1% was followers who don’t look like they’re enjoying themselves, also known as ‘bitchface’. This term was referred to specifically by a number of leaders. Further prompting on what this is, revealed the following:

“…she looks like she doesn’t want to be there but accepted the dance and now won’t stop the dance. It can make a guy feel pretty shitty.”

“…looks pissed off or bored or unimpressed… so you think you’re always doing something wrong.”

This was also related to a bad attitude:

“…when I invite her and she doesn’t say no but I feel like I’m annoying her and she looks bored when dancing or looks away.”

It is often quoted that in face-to-face verbal communication, body language accounts for 55% of the overall message we send. This includes facial expressions and eye contact. In dance, when there isn’t (generally) any talking during the dance, we would argue that body language accounts for 100% of communication. The body language of social dancing is another topic for another time, however eye contact was often raised in comments related to bitchface and a bad attitude.

What messages are your eyes sending to your partner on the dance floor? Are you looking about disinterestedly? Scanning the room to see who’s watching you? Or are you making eye contact?


Last, but not least, 29.7% of responders identified a heavy, slow frame in their top 3 dislikes. While often identified as a separate factor, we would identify a good frame as one of the key technical ways of establishing a good connection with your dance partner. As Partick Swayze tells Baby,

“You’ve gotta hold the frame!” 

As you can see, there is a clear link between our leaders’ top 3 likes – a smiling, connected, light follower – and top 3 dislikes – a backleading, bitchfaced, heavy follower.

Once again, thank you to all our responders for providing your thoughts for this blog. We’ll be asking followers now for their thoughts and sharing their top 3s in the coming weeks.

See you on the social dance floor!


Photo: Ryan McGuire, modified by Momenta rhythms for life


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

We live by the motto: “Learn something new, try something different and convince yourself you have no limits!” Join us on our journeys on the social dance floor and stepping outside of our comfort zones!


Facebook with Us!

Insta with Us!

Pin with Us!