Weekly Lessons & Socials – West Coast Swing
Partner Dance to Popular Music!
*NEW FORMAT STARTS APRIL 2, 2019*
Every Tuesday evening at Amigo’s Sports Bar, Ottawa’s West Coast Swing dance community comes together for lessons, social dancing, and fun activities.
Newcomers are free their first night, and are welcome every week at 7:30 pm.
Next 2-month Beginner Cycle begins April 2, 2019.
- No partner is required for group lessons.
- No previous experience is required; newcomers are welcome at any time.
- We are an inclusive community.
- Please arrive 15 minutes early to register, pay, and change into indoor shoes.
Everything you need to know:
- Prices & Location
- Level Descriptions & how to move up
- What to wear, what to bring, & how to be successful
- Code of Conduct
NOTE that the beginner-appropriate class is always the later class (7:45pm). Experienced dancers who take the earlier class are welcome to stay for the following class to continue to work on their basics and welcome new dancers.
Please arrive 10-15 minutes prior to class to register, pay, and change your shoes.
April *new format begins*
- 7:00 pm: West Coast Swing Vocabulary with Christian & Daniela
- 7:45 pm: West Coast Swing Foundations 1 with Todd & Maria
- 8:30-11:00 pm or later: DJ’ed social dancing
April 2 is Newbie Night – bring a newcomer and you get in free that night
April 23: Annual Battle Night
- 7:00 pm: West Coast Swing Vocabulary with Todd & Janet
- 7:45 pm: West Coast Swing Foundations 2 with Todd & Janet
- 8:30-11:00 pm or later: DJ’ed social dancing
May 21 Theme Night: Flower Power
Ottawa’s Weekly West Coast Swing Event is held at Amigo’s Sports Bar: 858 Merivale Road @ Carling Avenue (near Westgate Mall)
- Classes for everyone to learn and progress
- Ample free parking
- Large wood floor
- Cash bar
- Pool tables
- Student & package prices
- Drop-in class + social: $20 ($15 with student ID)
- 10-night pass: $150 ($90 with student ID)
- Lesson only: $15 ($10 with student ID)
- Social only: $7/night ($5 with student ID)
*Prices as of January 4, 2019
If you’re a first-time customer of Smoothstyle, you may want to take advantage of one of our new-student deals.
Forms of payment accepted:
- Cash, credit, debit (Square)
- Online interac to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Personal cheques to “Maria Ford”
West Coast Swing Foundations 1 & 2
Learn the basic patterns of West Coast Swing, along with proper technique from your feet through your spine.
* You may (and should) repeat this class as numerous times, including while taking the Vocabulary classes. Once you’ve learned one role well (Lead or Follow), we recommend that you learn the other role, too.
West Coast Swing Vocabulary
1 month each; new topic every month.
Required: graduation from Foundations 1 & 2.
Focusing on a new topic each month, Vocabulary classes will deep-dive so you can master a new skill set. You will learn new patterns and variations, , lead-follow skills/connection skills, styling and quality of movement, and proper technique.
* We recommend that new dancers who have completed Foundations 1 & 2 continue to repeat Foundations 1 & 2 while taking Vocabulary classes – there is no extra fee to repeat.
West Coast Swing Mastery
1 month; twice per year.
By audition or invitation.
For highly skilled social dancers and serious competitors who meet the stated criteria for audition.
How to Move Up
Please refer to this brief explanation of how to move up in levels (PDF).
Scents: Please refrain from wearing perfume or cologne. Check out or tips for how to smell good but not too good when partner dancing.
CAUTION: While we encourage attendees to refrain from using scents, we cannot guarantee a scent-free environment.
Clothing: We wear street clothes for West Coast Swing dancing. Jeans, shorts, and slacks for both men and women, plus t-shirts and tops with a bit of design or detailing.
Shoes: You should wear either dance shoes or indoor-only shoes. Notes about shoes:
- Flexible is best – suede soles are better than hard leather soles
- Low heels are best – we typically dance West Coast Swing in 0.5″-1.5″ block heels
- Wear a shoe that allows you to easily pivot/turn on wood floor. Rubber soles can cause injury to knees and hips when turning.
- If you don’t want to buy dance shoes yet, you can put adhesive moleskin on the soles of a pair of indoor shoes. Moleskin can usually be found at cobblers and some drug stores.
- If you sweat a lot, bring a change or two (or five) of shirts, extra deoderant, and a hand towel.
- We always have mints and gum on hand, but please brush your teeth if you’ve eaten before dancing or if you haven’t brushed for more than 5 hours.
- It’s always a good idea to have band-aids in case your new shoes or new movement causes blisters.
- Cash. We do NOT accept any plastic form of payment for the dance lessons/practices. You can pay for food and beverages at Amigo’s using plastic.
Outside beverages of any kind (including water) are prohibited due to licensing and other issues. Please plan to purchase water and other beverages from the bar.
We’ve prepared The Essential Guide to Partner-Dance Etiquette – please take a moment to read it. It includes helpful tips to ensure you become a popular dance partner!
Code of Conduct:
Please familiarize yourself with our Code of Conduct.