How to Be a Better Bachata Follower

If you want to learn how to be a better Bachata follower, your attitude is much more important than your skills. It sounds counterintuitive, but I promise you it will work. As a leader, I look for certain qualities in a follower that have little to do with skill level. So if you incorporate these things into your Bachata dancing, you will be in demand on the dance floor.

Be A Better Listener

Being a better listener is difficult but it is a fool-proof way to become a better Bachata follower. When dancing it is natural to be nervous or tense because you don’t want to miss a move. But that is also when followers stop listening. Instead, they are rushing and trying to anticipate the leader’s moves. It is hard to lead if the follower is doing their own moves.

So if you want to be a better Bachata follower, be a great listener. Dancing Bachata (or Salsa or anything really) is just like when you are having a great conversation with a friend. You are connecting and vibing and you feel a sense of emotional intimacy. As a follower, your role is to be present and attentive. You set the tone by responding to the leader. So listen more and you will become a better Bachata follower.


Sometimes it may seem that you are not asked to dance often. An easy fix might be to smile more. I always ask those who are smiling to dance. That welcoming, open energy of a smile attracts me more than skill level or how they are dressed or anything else.

So, smile at everybody! I guarantee that leaders are just as nervous as you. But if you smile, the leader knows you are there to dance and have fun. So make it simple – smile more and you will be a better Bachata follower.

Quarter, Quarter, Half and Tap

Okay, there is one skill you should master to be a better Bachata follower. It’s basic, but even intermediate dancers often need to improve their turns. If you feel like you are falling behind or have a hard time keeping up, here is the hack for you.

Turn by doing this – quarter, quarter, half and tap. Here is how you do it. Bring your feet together to start a Bachata turn. Twist on the first count. But make sure that your torso, your belly button, twists a quarter of the way. So on count one, you should face 90 degrees away from where you started. On two, you do another quarter turn. So you should be facing away from your partner. Face your partner again on the third count by doing a half-turn. Tap on four. So you complete the turn in three counts and tap on the fourth.  If your turns are solid, your confidence will improve and you will be a better Bachata follower.

So to become a better Bachata follower remember to listen, smile and practice your turns by repeating quarter, quarter, half and tap. I promise you will feel like you #belong on the dance floor. Click on How to Be a Better Bachata Leader for more tips.

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