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A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Dance to Any Type of Music

Don't be an asshat, learn how to dance to dubstep, hip-hop, house, and pop.
Ryan Bassil
London, GB

All photos, except this one, are by Dan Evans

Like anything that requires continuous excursion of the limbs, dancing will render you breathless and inadequate. Formative years can be spent trying to learn; girls developing their flair at a Street Dancing class in a village hall every Thursday; boys sliding across the floor at every school disco - but it’s mostly useless. Reach the legal age for adult-dancing and all skill will be replaced with the rhythmic coordination of a beer-stained sloth on MDMA.


However, the ability to bust out sweet-ass moves isn’t completely unattainable. Even if you have a gut that restricts physical activity to a brisk walk up a flight of stairs, a boilerplate exists for every genre, each movement requiring minimal effort but ensuring average comfort among a crowd full of strangers with condoms inside their wallets and bad thoughts in their brains.

I learnt about the dance-move boilerplate after spending some time on Howcast, a YouTube channel that aims to teach people “How to Kiss Harder” and “How to Win The Lottery”, assumedly created for humans without common sense. Here it was confirmed that, actually, “dance like nobody is watching” is a lie and the real quote is “dance like everybody is watching and judging your ability to conform to clichéd expectations”. With that in mind, this is a step-by-step guide on how to do just that.

How to Dance to Dubstep…

Honestly, I don’t think I’ve witnessed a person successfully dance to dubstep; mostly because it’s almost impossible to oscillate to the musical equivalent of a small-child repeatedly throwing up the contents of a twelve-pack of smell gel-pens, but also because it’s definitely impossible if you’re trying to do it while on ketamine. In this case, patiently await the drop by staring at the floor and asking yourself why you’re at a dubstep night. When the Skrillex branded-bass-bomb finally climaxes, contort your face and treat your body like an octopus, resulting in the accidental spill of a drink all down your chin. Leave before the desire to stand on the toes of the dickhead behind you becomes as inexorable as the mental frustration that comes from listening to dubstep for more than five-minutes.


How to Dance to Rock Music…

I would write a paragraph on air-guitaring, but the idiots at Howcast are on point:

“The basic thing that you want to do when you’re listening to rock if you’re at a concert or at a club or anything is basically just to feel the beat and your attitude right?”

"As cliche as it might be that's what feels good and that's just kind of like, how it goes"

“If you stay on the beat and really feel the pulse, people around you will pick up on that, and you’re going to look like a cool guy.”

“And you’re going to be rocking out! It’s going to be awesome.”


How to Dance to House Music…

Initially, buy a pair of trainers, ideally a model that is equivalent in price to two days of full-time work. They won’t help you dance, but they’ll ensure that you look as fresh as every other dickhead with a disposable income. Then, while wearing the trainers, stand in the corner of the dance-floor, making a space for yourself. Move your feet in an inexplicable format and wait for an enthusiast to write an article debating if the frequency of your foot movement is the end for House Music.

How to Dance to Pop Music…

As anyone that has witnessed the euphoria attained by vaguely connected relatives at a wedding reception will tell you, dancing to pop music is easy, especially if you’re five flutes deep. First, find your best group of best friends forever. Preferably these will be people that will boost your attractiveness, a crucial quality while nestling in the bosom of Real Life Tinder where the only swipe right is an uncomfortably long eye-fuck. Once you’ve determined a beautified Hitler Youth dressed in All Saints, stand in a circle, mouthing all the wrong words like you mean it. Make a decision to rock forward or backward and move your torso like an ornament in the back window of a car, occasionally peering into your friend’s eyes and catching a moment that cannot be described with a word. Clap your hands out of time. Check your phone. Take a selfie. Congratulate yourself for being beautiful and having the best best friends EVER. Then order some shots, render the rest of the evening a black-out, and end it tripping down the stairs in front of everyone queuing for the cloak-room.


How to Dance to Hip Hop…

In their quest to teach the world everything, Howcast created a video for dancing to rap music, stating “the main thing with hip-hop is to relax, and have fun”. But really, we all know that dancing to hip-hop is something that TBH, beyond the Honey DVD and unrealistic music videos, is limited to guy’s waving their arms and shouting one word at the end of each bar. Still, if you really really really want to dance to rap music. it’s possible. Pick a hand-signal, the Hov triangle; the Fred Durst rollin’ wave; the A$AP Rocky bounce, and ride with it, feeling like a baller because you managed to spit the first verse to “99 Problems” without fucking up.

Follow Ryan on Twitter: @RyanBassil

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