9.2 On What To Carry With You To A Dance

Things to carry with you to a dance on a regular basis:

– Dance shoes
– Notepad and pen
– Comb
– toothbrush, toothpaste, chewing gum, breath mints, mouthwash
– Earplugs
– Ibuprofen
– Paper fan, several towels, handkerchiefs
– Extra shirt & t-shirt (2 extras for swing dancing), deodorant
– Plastic grocery bag (for sweat-soaked clothing)
– Shoe brush
– Spare shoelaces
– Water bottle
– Safety pins
– Band-Aids
– Towel – One good wipe between dances can make a difference! Nothing is
worse then a sharp head snap in mydirection that flings sweat drops in my
eyes… well maybe when a dancer (either leader or follower) wipes their
hand across their face during the dance and then hands it to you for a lead
(or follow)…
– dance floor wax, cornstarch, powder (you are free to carry this with you
if you’d like, but I’d hesitate to spread it on the dance floor, for it
generally makes serious dancers and club owners want to kill you!)

Dance wax – One need only think back to the Pet Rock to realize that anything can be sold to anyone who doesn’t know any better. That hardly qualifies a product for endorsement. The need for dance floor wax usually is a result of wearing improper boots or shoes for dancing. I have watched in horror as people in tennis shoes or old worn out boots spread every form of “wax” on the floor to try to solve a problem that really doesn’t exist. For some reason, many dancers don’t seem to consider dance floors in the same category as basketball courts and would be outraged to be forced to buy ‘special’ shoes for dancing. It’s a shame. Dance shoes are light-weight and comfortable. They need extra care to keep the chrome suede sole effective but they do smooth out the differences between floors in different states of repair and care. Dance floor “wax” is not a “wax” and is a hazard to anyone who wears proper footwear to dance in. Before spreading some foreign substance on a dance floor, one might consider that, in this age of lawsuits, it might be very costly to be found guilty of contributory negligence when a dance teacher, competitor, or trained dancer hurts himself due to something being placed on the floor that does not “naturally” belong on the floor. The only question to be settled in an action like this is… “who put it there, and with who’s permission?” I personally stay off of floors that have been sabotaged like this. But then, I’m not into lawsuits. Don’t risk your financial future betting that everyone comes from this point of view. It is easy to solve the problem without “dance floor wax.” Wear proper footwear and you too can spin like a top and dance like you want to, without endangering others. I am a professional dance teacher, I teach dance in nightclubs, and I dance on all kinds of floors. I have watched people get sued for this very act. I have read insurance policies that prohibit the use of “floor wax” and I know first hand how dangerous this can be. Unfortunately, not everyone has had the opportunity to slip and fall on a dance floor. Just remember, not everyone wears street shoes for dance. If the floor is sticky, clean it instead of putting more junk on it. I encourage others who have had bad experiences with foreign substances on the floor to help beginning dancers understand that the floor is not bad, it is the shoes. Most dance professionals do not prefer a fast floor or a slow floor, but would instead prefer a floor that reacts with the proper amount of speed and grab to allow PROPER footwear to adequately support the body in flight. The bottom line is that dance floor “wax” is dangerous and unnecessary. I have had to dance on grass, carpet, gym floors, etc. If you cannot dance without putting something on the floor, get some training. Ask yourself why don’t we use silicone on the floor? Silicone is REALLY SLICK. Your dance floor “wax” is like silicone to anyone who knows how to move their own body.