7 Tips To Master Salsa Dancing PART 3


Staff member
By permission from Fernando Cruz of Salsa Rhythms, I'd like to share his "7 Tips To Master Salsa Dancing." This is Part 3. I've always been really impressed with Fernando's articles and I hope you all find them as interesting and valuable as I do.

Fernando Cruz/[url=http://www.salsa-rhythms.com/srth/index.htm said:

Hello Again,

Welcome back. It's time for Part 3 of the report
"7 Tips To Master Salsa Dancing"!

Again, if you missed Parts 1 and 2, just go back to the
Salsa forum and check those out FIRST...once you're done
just come back here.

This is the last part of the report and I'm sure you'll love it
because I have included an audio track you can download
and listen to...

Now, onto the final tips...

"7 Tips To Master Salsa Dancing" Part III

Tip #6:
Comfort and Safety

Key points to remember:

#1 Safety in dancing
#2 Efficiency in foot placement
#3 Mastering your floor space

Good salsa dancers have a sense of awareness about themselves
in relation to others on the dance floor. In developing this
awareness apply the following whether you are in a dance lesson,
practicing by yourself and especially at a dance club.

In Salsa any step back should be a small one, period. This
applies to the man as well as the woman. If your step back is
large you will run into problems such as:

#1 Stepping on other salsa dancers around and behind you
#2 Getting stepped on by other salsa dancers
#3 Not being able to comfortably stay on time to the music
(both you and your partner)

Measure your step by placing the toe of your back step (the foot
going back, right or left) lightly against the inside heel of
your opposite foot (keep your weight on the ball of your back
foot and the heel off the floor) then step forward with your
opposite foot (heel to flat).

You can practice this like this:

Step back with your left foot and forward with your right then
step back with your right foot and forward with your left.

At first be sure to watch your feet as you do this, then practice
without looking down until you can "feel" the appropriate distance.

At first, practice this SLOWLY and you will find that you will
gain speed naturally and conserve the amount of space you use on
the dance floor.

This is an extremely important point because keeping your steps
small respects the space of other dancers and protects you from
injury in crowded floors.

This also helps you avoid "losing" the beat as you are dancing
with your partner. You see, if you take really big steps, you are
essentially wasting a lot of time. Therefore, you will without a
doubt "lose" the rhythm of the song due to this.

However, in order to effectively use the tips you've learned
you have to know our last tip...

Tip #7:
How To Find The Beat

The very first tip you learned was "Finding The Beat". One
question that a LOT of people ask, is:

"How do I find the beat?"

Well that's actually not as hard as it sounds.

But, to make it easier, I have put together a small download for you...

First of all, click on the link below and download the track
that is available to you:


After you download the track, play it at least 3 times, and then
come back here when you are done...but make sure you listen to
it at least 3 times...


Ok, I see you're back. As you heard from the track, the conga
beat is a very easy one to follow.

In fact, the conga beat is one of the most recognizable beats
for you to use.

Now, I'll specify it even more:

The conga beat #4 (if you don't remember what it sounds like
just go back and listen to the track) will be the beat that
you will 99 1/4% of the time always hear!

But I won't stop there...let me give you one more awesome tip
for finding the beat:

Listen to the singers!!

That's right...

The lead singer and the chorus will usually begin singing on the
first beat of the song. So check this out:

As you listen to a song, make sure you listen for when the singer
begins to sing. Then listen for the #4 beat of the conga (again
if you don't remember what it sounds like, just go back to the
track again).

This will make it a TON easier for you to capture the beat.

Finding the beat is the #1 biggest problem that
ALL salsa dancers face.

Now after some time, you will actually automatically just "feel"
it and it won't be so "scientific", but in order to begin to feel
the music, you must understand how it's layed out. The track
you now have is a very good tool for you to use.

Something else to remember is that these tips are just that,
tools. Period. Not a magic pill. Not a magic formula, but tools
that help you understand the minor differences between
a good dancer, and a not-so-good dancer.

I'm sure you can see that pretty much everything is under
YOUR control. In salsa dancing, there really are no other
variables to deal with.

Of course, some people are "born" with qualities that lend
themselves to dance, but this is only applicable if you're
interested in dancing professionally.

But for a social dancer, EVERYTHING is under your control. Period.

That wraps up your this report on "7 Tips To Master Salsa Dancing".

Simply by knowing and applying these little-known (actually, they're not
really "little-known", but from seeing some dancers at the clubs it sure
seems like these tips are "little-known!!) you'll be way ahead of most
salsa dancers you'll see at the clubs.

And in Part 2 you saw how important it really is to keep up your skills!

I hope you've enjoyed it.

Here's to your salsa dancing success,
Fernando Cruz
Salsa Rhythms
Part 1: http://salsaforums.com/showthread.php?t=105
Part 2: http://www.salsaforums.com/showthread.php?t=131
This was great. The beat counting track is gone from their sites, but I found some things on youtube. If anyone has something better, please do share. Thanks!


Super Moderator
Staff member
This was great. The beat counting track is gone from their sites, but I found some things on youtube. If anyone has something better, please do share. Thanks!
You might want to take a look at the following youtube account as it contains a series of salsa clips with counting:


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