What to wear for Bachata Dancing

As a rule,I would say wear whatever makes you feel aces, what makes you feel confident and lets you express yourself. Sometimes, students call and they ask “what should I wear?” I say. Hey listen, you can wear a dinner cocktail dress, or you can wear a bathrobe. Whatever makes you feel great. But maybe you are taking your first dance class or going out dancing to a Latin Club for the first time and you do need some help. Here’s a breakdown of what you should wear and what you should keep in mind.

What to wear for Bachata Dancing – Classes 

Wear super comfortable clothing for classes – especially beginner classes. Men will tend to wear jeans and a t-shirt or if it’s getting warm or it’s warm at the studio, they’ll wear shorts. Most students wear sneakers or running shoes and that works well in beginner classes. Wear something that is light. Sometimes students will come straight from work, so they’re wearing a suit but I encourage you to bring a change of clothes and wear something light because you are gonna be moving a lot more and you don’t want to wear something that is cumbersome and holds you back. Women will often wear jeans or leggings or light pants with a t-shirt or crop top. Again, you want things that make you feel comfortable in your body. There really is no “wrong outfit.” Women often ask “shouldn’t I wear heels?” As a rule, not at the beginning.  In the beginning, wear runners or flats. The things to avoid are flip-flops or Crocs – anything where your foot is super, super loose – they won’t be good for you because the last thing you want to do is to roll your ankle while you’re dancing. Above all put comfort and how you feel about yourself first. Fashion is a distant second.

What to wear for Bachata Dancing – Socials

What I’m describing are socials or parties that are run by a school or an event provider, not Latin night clubs, which is different. But the rules for clothing at socials are the same as they are for classes. Occasionally people will dress up in something a little bit fancier. But dancers often find that they would rather be comfortable and practical. One quick tip is that you probably want something that will wick the sweat away. You’re going to be dancing in a crowd of anywhere from eighty to over two hundred people and you’re gonna work up a sweat. So wearing something that will feel light and dries easily is a really good idea. Think of things you would wear to a yoga studio or the gym. Another suggestion for socials is to bring an extra shirt because you want to be fresh and want to be dancing for two, three hours and dancing in a damp shirt just isn’t very comfortable. I naturally tend to sweat a little bit more than others and I wish I was given that advice.

What to wear for Bachata Dancing – Latin clubs

At Latin nightclubs, people do tend to dress up a bit more. I was in LA and I went out to dance. I had never been dancing in LA before and I walked in with a t-shirt and jeans and a hat. Everyone else was wearing suits and dresses and this really shocked me. In fact, they wouldn’t even let me wear my hat. Maybe it was just that club but in general people dress up more. Followers will wear heels and often dresses or skirts and leaders will wear a nice shirt and  a nice pair of pants or a nice pair of jeans as well. But even if you are putting in more effort I do want to stress that you should still wear things that make you feel great.

So whether you are going to a class, social or nightclub wear something that makes you feel great about yourself.  Imagine you are putting on something that makes you feel amazing – dress for yourself. It doesn’t matter what other people think.  Does it make you feel confident? Always pick that path. I think you always win that way.

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