Eyes up! A Few Legit (Or Not So Legit) Reasons We Look Down When We Dance

Stop looking down!

How many times did you hear that when you were first learning to dance?  Maybe you still get caught checking out that sexy wooden floor. Don’t worry, it happens to everyone, especially when we’re trying a new or difficult step. Our eyes drop. It’s apparently very difficult to think and look straight ahead at the same time. It’s like we think the floor we’re dancing on is as rocky as our brains feel trying to remember the timing. One wrong move, and we could stumble and fall. Then a dance partner is put in front of us, and we can’t move our feet unless our eyes are glued to them. 


What gives? 

Well, I don’t know what’s going on in your head when you’re looking down, but I can share what’s going on in my head. Here are just a few of the very reasonable excuses, uh, I mean, explanations, for why my eyes drop when I dance.

  1. It really is easier to think. Nothing else is going on down there at the floor, so there is nothing to distract me while I’m trying to remember if this next step went straight back or curved. 

  1. I’m a klutz. I really could stumble and fall! I’ve been known to trip on air, so I wouldn’t put it past me to trip on that nice, smooth dancefloor. There might be a stray rhinestone!

  1. I’m just looking for the hair tie I lost the other day. I guess I can’t use this one anymore now that I’m sporting a pixie cut. Damn.

  1. I don’t want to step on my partner’s feet. I know I’ve been getting silly, but I think this one is a legitimate concern of many beginner dancers. They honestly don’t want to hurt their partner by stomping down on their big toe! An honorable goal, but it’s actually easier to tell where your partner is if you focus on your connection with them instead of where your feet are (attached to the bottoms of your legs, guys, they’re not going anywhere). 

  1. What if I’m looking up and make eye contact with someone watching me dance?? I’ve reached a point in my dance journey where I love making eye contact with someone watching me dance. In that moment, they’re dancing with me and we have a beautiful connection. My heart sings when they smile! When I’m performing or competing, that is. At the studio, while I’m practicing or taking a lesson, I still get self-conscious about people watching me. It’s like letting someone see a rough sketch of your masterpiece. Don’t look, it’s not finished yet!  


While all of these are completely legitimate (#not) reasons to look down, it’s important to break the habit as quickly as possible. Looking down affects our posture, our balance, and our alignment when we dance, and when we’re affected, our partner is also affected. Plus ladies, when you’ve got a pound of makeup on your face at a competition and you look down, it looks like you’re dancing with your eyes closed. Do you really want pictures of yourself sleep dancing? 


So lift that chin up, open those eyes and take in the world around you! Don’t worry, your feet will follow you and the floor will stay beneath you. I promise.

New Level, New Devil: Unexpected Challenges We Face As We Advance

After winning a World title at the Closed Silver level in American Smooth last year, my teacher and I decided to skip Gold and move straight up to the Open division. A whole new world of possibilities opened up as the syllabus became just a starting point for our dancing, instead of the structure that our dancing had to fit into. Open presented the opportunity to be more creative and build routines that were more uniquely me.

New Year, Another Chance

The New Year has rolled in, bringing with it not only new dreams, goals, and expectations, but also a breath of fresh air for all those who aim to take great strides in the coming months, particularly the athletes of the DanceSport industry. Let’s take a closer look at what the New Year has in store for the dancers, audience members, and World DanceSport Federation as a whole.

Finding Love on the Dance Floor

Happy Candy Hearts and Chocolate Month! Just in time for us to waver on our New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier, right? 

On A Break from Dance Competitions? How To Stay Motivated

Goals are essential for any journey. They keep you motivated and accountable at the same time. Dancesport is no different, and competitions are great goals to work toward.  

What's In a Championship Title?

Championship competitions are when dancers have the chance to claim a World or National Championship title. But is it really that big of a deal? These competitions will happen again in 2019 and 2020 and someone else could be awarded the World Champion title. Does that mean the previous winner is dethroned? Or once a champion, always a champion? There is a title for each of the multiple skill and age categories. Is one more of a world champion than another? 

Recap | UCWDC World Championships

What a week! The UCWDC World Championships wrapped up about half past midnight local time on Saturday night (or Sunday morning, technically). In addition to crowning a new Classic Masters World Champion, Saturday night brought repeat performances by many of the new World Champions from the entire week, a showdance by Marc Davidson and Sylvie Raymond (winners of five consecutive UCWDC Showcase Masters World Championships and two consecutive UCWDC Classic Masters World Championships) and a live performance by country music artist, Eric Heatherly.

Midway Updates of the UCWDC World Champs

Let’s dance, y’all! The 2019 Country Dance World Championships are well underway at the Grand Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. Don’t forget, if you’re not able to be there physically, you can be a virtual spectator via live stream on FloDance.

What to Expect at the 27th Annual Country Dance World Championships

What better way to ring in the New Year than with dancing? If it’s country dancing that makes your heart sing and your feet move, then the Country Dance World Championships is the New Year’s party for you! 

Recap | 2018 WDSF World Open Standard Riga

Last but not least, we conclude the final WDSF World Open of the year. This weekend was full of excitement not only due to the Youth Latin World Championship but also with the inclusion of the Standard World Open and the World Championship of the Professional Standard Show Dance division. 

Recap | 2018 World Championship Youth Latin Riga

It has truly been a stellar year for the Russian Federation as athletes of various divisions took numerous WDSF World Titles. Here is a quick overview of a few of the Champion couples of 2018: