CUBAN SALSA. WHY YOU SHOULD START WITH L.A. SALSA FIRST
Gang, Cuban Salsa is a beautiful dance that attracts the interest of many dancers. There are many styles of Salsa, from Cuban to New York to Cali Style. However, if you live in North America, especially in Toronto, most clubs will play “Los Angeles – L.A. Salsa,” also called “On One” Salsa or “Nightclub” Salsa. So from now on, I will refer to it as L.A. Salsa.
There are three main reasons why you should learn L.A. Salsa.
Reason #1: The most danced worldwide is L.A. Salsa.
L.A. Salsa is the most danced around the world. When I look at all the Salsa Congresses in Europe, North America and Asia, the most popular dance style is L.A. Salsa. Likewise, whenever I’ve travelled, I’ve found that most Salsa clubs around the world host dancers that prefer the mentioned style.
I tell my students that, ultimately, you want to learn all kinds of Salsa styles, include them in your practices and mix them. So you shouldn’t be favouring one, but if you are starting and want to learn a technique, L.A. Salsa is the most danced and practica choice as you can go to any Latin Club and find dancers familiar with this style.
Whenever I learn a skill, I want to have a big community where I can share my craft, and based on my personal experience and more than a decade of teaching Salsa, the best choice is to learn the L.A. Salsa Style.
Reason # Two: All the fun tricks.
I love LA Style, also called Sala Nightclub, because of all the tricks, dips, and quick turns. All this variety of moves is possible because you’re dancing in a straight line instead of in circular movements.
Cuban Salsa is known for circular movements, and quite often, you’re not signalling your partner but using their momentum.
This might sound like jargon for someone who’s never danced before. But, if you want a visual aid to understand LA Salsa, go on YouTube and look up Salsa dance. What you will see most is the L.A. Salsa style of dance, where the leader turns the follower, the follower does multiple turns into a dip and all the craziness and awesomeness of excitement and energy.
L.A. Salsa is like being on a roller coaster where the twist and turns create excitement for the follower, while for the leader is a fantastic feeling being able to make those moments.
Reason # three: Rules and structure.
The following statement is my experience with Salsa, which does not necessarily reflect all dance schools or students. L.A. Salsa was easier to learn in the long term because of the rules and structure. For example, I had two left feet when I started to dance Salsa, so the counts helped me understand where my body was supposed to be. In addition, the structure and the clear patterns also guided me on how to twist, land, etc. Having clarity built my confidence as I knew that if I put effort into learning the rules, I would be able to dance.
Although there are rules and structure in Cuban Salsa, in my experience, there’s a lot more flow, which was confusing at the beginning.
I loved learning “Los Angeles Style” Salsa first because it helped build my confidence and skills to master many different dance styles, including Kizomba, Bachata, and Tango. Therefore, based on my experience, I can confidently say that the first Style you should learn is “LA Style.”
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