Music & Entertainment

A Groom's Perspective on Wedding Dances

He can't dance, neither can you, and what to do about it

Dancing with another person is fast becoming a lost art. It’s just not part of our upbringing anymore, and dancing—as in the kind of dancing you did in high school—isn't the kind that is envisioned when it comes to your husband-to-be and your first dance.

Since I assume you aren’t trained in ballroom dancing, and—because I'm a guy—I know that neither is your fiancé, you will want to figure out how, or whether, you are going to tackle this glaring omission in your bridal resume.

First, you should figure out whether there will actually be dancing at your wedding reception. Many couples are shying away from a traditional reception with a band or DJ in favor of no dancing, at all. (In fact, that's the choice my wife and I made). Furthermore, you may still feature some dancing, but no "first dance". At a recent wedding I attended, the bride and groom dragged everyone on to the dance floor to have a communal first dance. (For the record, the first dance song was "I Like To Move It". We did.)

If you are envisioning a traditional first dance featuring a song that you both love, it's a great idea to take dance lessons so that you don't feel completely awkward when under the gaze of all of your friends and family. You'll want to prepare far enough in advance of your wedding to get the benefit of the lessons, but not too far that you forget how to do the waltz. Six to eight weeks is a good guide. Practice makes perfect (or at least, passable.)

The easiest way to learn to dance is to support your local dance studio. Having reviewed several "Learn to Dance" Web sites and DVDs, I'm confident that there is no better way to learn than to receive personalized instruction. Just as you didn't learn to drive from a book, dancing requires that you (and your flatfooted fiancé) develop muscle memory.

Perhaps the best thing about learning to dance before the wedding day is that it will give you and your fiancé the opportunity to participate in something fun, healthy and sexy. Taking dancing lessons is a great way to keep "dating" leading up to your wedding, and beyond. That's the secret of keeping things spicy. —Michael Arnot, Founder, Groom Groove

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