total newbie need some advice about private lessons!!

Discussion in 'Just Dance' started by amador24, Apr 15, 2010.

  1. amador24

    amador24 Changui

    Ok! hello everyone I'm 22 year old Male. I have always wanted to learn Salsa but always put it off and pretty much told myself I would get around to it but never have so I finally decided I am going to learn even if I have to pay $75 an hour for private lessons.

    I was just wondering if you guys think its a good idea to start with private lessons when I'm so new to Salsa. Or do you think I should maybe take group classes first then take private lessons when I am a bit more advanced???

    All advice welcomed and would be very much appreciated thanks! ;)
  2. Mambo T

    Mambo T Rhythm Deputy

    Start with group classes. Make a few friends that can give you feedback and maybe time for practice.
  3. viosil2003

    viosil2003 Son Montuno

    group classes all the way. What you learn privately at your level won't be much different than what you get in group classes. Concentrate on finding the right school for you.
  4. Platypus

    Platypus Son

    Group classes first. You can start adding privates few months later. Right now private lessons would be a serious waste of money. Instead just save up that money and use it later when they are much more useful.
  5. PielCanela

    PielCanela Sabor Ambassador

    excellent advice
  6. acpjr

    acpjr Tumbao

    There is a style of salsa dancing called Casino Rueda. From my experience, it is fun and very beginner friendly. By the very nature of the style, the other participants are very keen on getting beginners up to speed with timing and moves. It's very supportive in that sense.

    Do some research and see if anyone in your area teaches this style. Some scenes (including mine) have hardcore adherents that offer classes for free, albeit in an empty parking lot or city park. It's the grassroots of the salsa world.
  7. J&A

    J&A Son

    Private classes are a great way to fasttrack your way to a higher level in a short space of time, as long as the instructor is good. Plus you can stay away from developing bad habits early on.

    If you have the cash there is no doubt privates are the best way to go! From experience if I teach people that have been dancing a while I spend all my time going back to the beginning and working on the basics, it then takes twice the time to get rid of the bad habits than it does to teach them from scratch.
  8. Smejmoon

    Smejmoon El Sabroso de Conguero

    if you have lots of money, i'd say take private lessons and group lessons. i'm big believer in getting inital learning correct. if you can - get small group lessons where teacher corrects you often. usually for good teachers classes are packed, so i suggest adding privates.

    and take group classes for social reasons. dance with your classmates after class, at home, in socials.

    please post your dancing background. if you have little - for male (leader) you must try to get all the support you can, because it will be a rough start. if you have a lot, you'll figure every thing out yourself soon ;)
  9. sweavo

    sweavo Maestro 'Guaguanco' Rodríguez

    Group classes to start. Make friends, find a class where the style of dancing, the style of teaching and the ambience make you feel good.

    Don't push yourself up the class levels. If you do go up a level out of curiosity, keep attenting the lower levels at the same time as the better your basics the better everything.

    Get social dancing as soon as possible. Keep it simple, competent and fun on the dance floor rather than trying your most hardcore moves.

    Once you've got into the scene this way, you'll have a much better idea of what sort of questions you want answered in a private lesson. Then be prepared to go right back to the basics in your private classes.

    Something like
    months 1 and 2: group classes once a week (or more)
    month 3: add frequent social dancing
    month 4 onwards: add a private every few months

    would be the kind of schedule I'd recommend (though obviously it can vary wildly depending on the individual's talents and goals)

    Beware of taking too many privates and not enough social dancing. You need the social dancing to absorb the lessons from the privates.
  10. barrefly

    barrefly Nuevo Ritmo

    Like everyone else, I would go with group classes. However, group classes come in many shapes and sizes. I would ask the members here what they look for in a good group class. Some classes may start with learning/practicing the steps. (i.e. basic, side, cumbia, turns, suzy q, CBL etc,) while others go right into routines and you learn the steps with the routine. Some beginner classes are just that, beginner and may not be all that challanging while others will feel like an intermediate class and really challenge you. Also, a class where the instructor or his assistant or even the other more advanced dancers will take a moment to help you in a something that you are having problems with is also a plus. Finding the "ideal" group class for yourself will make a world of difference.
  11. misty

    misty Son

    Hiya Amador! My name is Misty and I too am new to both salsa as well as to these forums. For a moment, I thought I was the only non-advanced dancer on these forums until I saw your post.

    Do they have a lot of community groups that offer salsa lessons in your area? I attended some large salsa classes and met soooooooooooo many new friends there and had a blast. Perhaps you can give that a try as well?

    From what I can see on the posts here, a lot of the advanced to professional dancers here are aiming for perfection with every movement where as a beginner like myself am just trying to get the basic step down. I would have thought that the private lessons are for the pros aiming for perfection while the beginner classes with a group of students are for people like you and I, just learning the basic step and having a good time without the pressure of perfection just yet?
  12. opm1s6

    opm1s6 Sabor Ambassador

    Copied from my journey from somewhere far far away:

  13. opm1s6

    opm1s6 Sabor Ambassador

    Advice above is for dancing on2, not on1, not power on2 nor cuban.

    where are you from?
  14. azzey

    azzey El Sabroso de Conguero

    In my opinion the advice is fine for all styles, as far as it goes (except for specific timings in item 4).
  15. chr

    chr Shine Officer

    I agree with this (and disagree with some of the other posters).

    I don't think privates are a wast of money if the teacher is really worth it and, you practice and dance socially regularly. General opinion is that at least 8 hours of practice+ 8 hours of social dancing for each hour of private lessons is a relatively good rule of thumb.)
  16. Tocador

    Tocador Son

    I say group classes in the beginning.

    My primary reason is to learn the social aspect; being able to dance with many people. I've found with people i know, the ones that attended group classes for the majority of their early months were able to adapt to social dancing alot easier than some people i knew who stuck mostly to privates. I think the reason behind this is in group classes, especially beginners classes, you're meeting a group of new people, and you have to dance with them. This is better preparation for the social scene than just dancing with one instructor.

    Of course this does vary from person to person, some people learn better in different ways. I'm a very competitive person, i learn better in a group environment because i'm pushing myself to be the best in that class. I love working with people at my own level or below (i love teaching) so i avoid becoming overly arrogant and unpleasant. I do take privates now every month or 2 to make sure that my technique isnt getting sloppy and all that.

    If you do choose to take privates; choose an instructor that teaches beginner/ intermediate classes. They're usually better to help teach you, as they spend alot of their time teaching people at your level. A friend of mine, 2 weeks after she began salsa, told me she wanted to get a private class with Luda Kroitor. Despite the fact that it was way more expensive, i told her that Luda would only really be able to teach her the same things she would be learning in a group class anyway.
  17. MacMoto

    MacMoto Administrator Staff Member

    I was going to write a post but sweavo has said everything I wanted to say:

  18. terence

    terence Maestro 'Descarga' Cachao

    The choice of HOW anyone wishes to learn, is something that only the individual may decide...

    I have had students over the yrs that would never take class work.. and those ( many more ) that only took classes .

    There are pros and cons to each form of learning.

    Some are more obvious than others.. for e.g., in a group situation, you will get exposed to many more types of "lead " and " follow ".. in and of its self, not a bad thing... the downside ?.. in a large class, the individual attention you may need, will most likely be absent . Private lessons offer you more choices of times, and possibly will hasten your initial learning .

    The cost factor is always a consideration for most people, but even those who are able to afford private lessons ,sometimes opt for the group situation .

    I think you need to initially take a few classes, and see how they affect your learning process.. then make a decision based on that info.
  19. SalsaGipsy

    SalsaGipsy Capitán Del Estilo

    My advice would be to go to group lessons for sometime at the beginning and then decide whether you want to go to privates as well.

    One of the factors that helps many to go through the initial difficulties and stick with salsa is the group support. Going to group lessons, you'll probably make a lot of new friends who are in the same situation as you. You'll dance together, go to parties together, share information about classes, socials, shoes, instructors, etc. It is a kind of a safety net for us.

    Also, if you want to go to privates, how would you know which instructor to choose? To make the most out of it, you should choose somebody whose teaching style (and dancing style) appeals to you and the best way to find out is to go to their group classes first.
  20. SalsaVino

    SalsaVino Son

    If you take a group class that concentrates on routines or patterns than maybe once a month you could take a private to help you with technique.

    If you take a group class that concentrates on technique than mabye once a month you can take a private to help you with new patterns.

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