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For competitive dancing, the Latin dance styles are grouped into two main categories: American Rhythm and International Latin. The American Rhythm style consists of five dances: Cha-Cha, Rumba, East Coast Swing, Bolero, and Mambo. The International Latin style also consists of five dances: Cha-Cha, Rhumba, Jive, Paso Doble, and Samba. When comparing the two styles, the most obvious difference is that they each have some unique dances. However, all the dances in each style do differ from their counterparts, in subtle ways, mostly having to do with technique. You will find competitive events in each style.

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There are two main categories when talking about Standard Dancing – The International Standard and American Smooth. The International Standard style includes five dances: Waltz, Tango, Viennese Waltz, Foxtrot, and Quickstep. This style is danced widely in competitions, both in the United States and throughout the world. The most obvious trait of the International Standard style is the dancers’ constant closed position, where the two dance partners never lose contact (as opposed to American Smooth style, where couples often open up, and dance apart from each other). The Standard dances are also characterized by their very precise elements of technique: footwork, rise & fall, amounts of turn, etc. From this technique emerges a unique elegance and beauty. Four of the Standard dances have their American-style counterparts. The American Smooth dances consist of: Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot, Viennese Waltz. In the American Smooth style, partners often separate from closed dance position, and dance apart from each other. American Smooth is quite popular at social dances, and is danced at major competition events across the United States. The ballroom dance steps in this expressive style are creative and can be extremely fun to dance and watch.


Here at Arthur Murray, we have an entire Country Western Syllabus that teaches many of the popular dances. And for those of you who have aspirations of competition, these dances can be found at nearly every event that we attend. 


If you are interested in learning a specific dance and are not sure whether we teach it or not, 

please feel free to contact us.

The Benefits of Dancing with Arthur Murray


Exer­cis­ing by jog­ging (out­doors or on a tread­mill) is an unat­trac­tive alter­na­tive for many peo­ple. Danc­ing is a mild form of aer­o­bic work­out and dance lessons make exer­cise a fun and enjoy­able social event any night of the week. 

Your “dance work­out” is ben­e­fi­cial in many ways:

  • Olympic ath­letes often include dance in their train­ing to sharpen con­trol, agility, speed, and balance.
  • Dance con­tributes to good pos­ture and body alignment.
  • Dance encour­ages gen­tle stretching.
  • Dance increases your flex­i­bil­ity and stamina.
  • Dance ben­e­fits your car­dio­vas­cu­lar sys­tem as you swing and sway from hips to shoulders.

The roman­tic prop­er­ties of dance are a secret that all good dancers enjoy:

  • Men feel con­fi­dent when they rec­og­nize which dance is being played and have the abil­ity to walk across the dance floor and ask a lady to dance.
  • Women will enjoy being asked to dance know­ing that they have mas­tered the grace, poise, styling, and impor­tant fol­low­ing skills of a trained dancer.
  • Couples can add the romantic skills that come with the holding, touching, and moving to the music that dancing provides.
  • Single people can meet new friends as dancing provides a natural ice breaker and becomes a common denom­i­na­tor in any crowd.

A tailored program at the Arthur Mur­ray Dance Stu­dio is all you need to turn your dancing and your romantic life around.