Types of Ballroom dance styles

Latin dances (ballroom) are the dances of the ancient Spanish and Portuguese colonies of the South American continent. To these territories are added the Hispanic Antilles (Cuba, Puerto Rico, Haiti …).

Unlike standard dances, Latin dances also offer more freedom: partners can let go and dance solo face-to-face. This is called “shine” or “styling”

List of Latin dances:

  • Rumba
  • Cha-cha
  • Samba
  • Paso Doble
  • Bachata
  • Mambo
  • Salsa
  • Milonga
  • Merengue
  • Cumbia
  • Lambada
  • Kizomba


Salsa is a dance back in fashion in recent years. The dance is very fast, learning salsa lends itself well to people wanting to lose weight while dancing.

Salsa is a couple dance that is relatively easy to learn. This Latin dance is generally easier to assimilate than cha-cha, kizomba or tango but requires a little more basics than merengue or bachata. It is an activity open to all public, there is no age to start learning salsa.

It is not necessary to know or have practiced another Cuban or Latin dance, or even to know how to dance. Just to progress to have a little motivation and practice a lot, but also a good teacher to teach you the basics and rhythm.


Bachata is a dancing rhythm from the Dominican Republic, full of folklore. It can be considered as a mixture of bolero (especially, the bolero rhythm) with other musical influences of African origin and with other styles such as sound, merengue, cha-cha-cha and tango.


Kizomba is a dance and kind of Angolan music. The term ‘kizomba’ comes from the Kimbundo linguistic expression, which means ‘feast’. Kizomba evolved as a dance in the 80s in Luanda (Angola), after being influenced by major musical influences of Zouk (Antilles) and finds its origins in Semba, a popular Angolan musical style.


Rumba – known in various forms: slow, medium or fast – is the most “relaxing” and also the oldest of Latin American dances. The one danced in Europe is the slowest, and was introduced as early as the 1930s. It was known as “Rumba Bolero”. The style adopted by the World Federation for its competitions is that of “Cuban Rumba”. Thanks to the slowness of her music, the Rumba allows the couple to let their acting qualities shine, by miming on the dance floor a dance of Love


The cha cha dance is a Latin dance that is originated in Cuba in the fifties. It is danced to the music of the same name. It is one of the Latin dances that is part of the repertoire of ballroom dancing.

The name cha cha is an onomatopoeic reference to the steps of this dance. It describes the sound of the shoes when the dancers make the most distinctive steps of the cha cha three quick steps that are danced in two stages.


Samba is a style of music and dance from Brazil. In Brazil, samba was born during a colonization of West Africa. It is therefore a kind of music and dance influenced by African religious traditions and slavery. Indeed, although samba has gradually become a national emblem. She was called cosais de negro before being recognized. We can go back to the origin of the word Samba, which called dance meetings between black slaves.

Paso Doble

The paso doble is at the origin a Spanish dance move with the not clocking pace scrolling the soldiers. It became a simple dance but one day, it is said that during a bullfight, an orchestra played an air of pasodoble to accompany the martial entry of the bullfighters in the arena.


Mambo is a ballroom dance born in the late 1940s in Cuba. It is the result of the fusion of rhythm of the rumba and that of the swing played by the jazz musicians. What characterizes most the Mambo is the first measure that starts with a hip action.


Milonga is both the name of a style of music and the place where one dances, the ball. A track, preferably in parquet, surrounded by tables. Regulars have theirs, others wait to be placed, often men on one side, women on the other.


The Merengue is one of the oldest Latin dances since it was born at the beginning of the 19th century in the Dominican Republic, country where one considers his music as the most joyful and the most rhythmic.


Cumbia is a musical style from Colombia and Panama that has spread to other Latin American countries such as Venezuela, Mexico, El Salvador, Ecuador, Peru and Argentina.

The dance is a synthesis of the rhythms inherited from the three cultures that make up the Comombian population, that is indigenous, African and Spanish.


the lambada has gone beyond the stage of “summer dance” and became known worldwide in the space of a few weeks. However, its origins are different from what we believe in both dance and music …


Comments are closed.