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First Steps to Swing

November 08, 1990|Zan Dubin

Beginners who want to learn to swing dance should don comfortable shoes and head straight to class, rather than wing it in a nightclub, says Betty Ladwig, president and co-founder of Orange County's West Coast Swing Dance Club.

"If they've never danced before, I'd recommend beginning swing lessons with a good teacher," says Ladwig, 54, who's been dancing all her life.

To find a good teacher, the Placentia resident suggests asking good dancers where to go. Orange County has plenty of teachers, but not all are top-notch or even acceptable, she said.

Initially, two lessons a week plus one independent practice session should suffice. "You need to become uninhibited," she said.

A "street dancer" who never had a lesson, Ladwig surmised that it could take from three months to a year before tyros are able to go out in public and confidently hold their own. "It all depends on the person's individual ability," she said.

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