Should I challenge myself in a higher level dance class?

Updated: Dec 21, 2018

The question of levels in a social dance class environment has long been the talk of heated debate. As teachers we have a duty to protect the safety of all our dancers, we also want to see our students progress. If a class does not have any restrictions such as ‘invite only’ or ‘you must have attended X course’ or ‘you must be assessed by a teacher before moving into’ then you may well think that you can just put yourself up into the next level and ‘give yourself a bit of a challenge’.

Some teachers are more polite than others with their response when a lower level dancer joins in a higher level class. I wish more teachers would step up and move the person back down to the lower class, sadly many don’t have the confidence to do this.

The problem with being in a higher level class is that you just won’t have the correct technique to cope with the higher level. The reason it’s a higher level is because those dancers have spent significant time perfecting core techniques which allow them to move onto the more complicated things. In Salsa especially the moves are fast and often dangerous and being in the wrong level can lead to dislocated joints and broken bones.

The other problem is that once a teacher sees that you are not capable of safely executing the moves they will probably bring the level of the class down, this annoys the higher level class who have paid good money for that higher level and it holds them back.