What are the different dance styles?

You want to register for a dance class. You go to a school near you and see the schedule.

We offer classical dance, Modern-Jazz, contemporary, Hip-Hop, Salsa .... but which class to choose?  

Come on, we help you to see more clearly in this article ...

Classical dance

Classical dance appeared in the Renaissance during the great Italian weddings. Classical dance performances are called "ballet" which comes from the Italian term "balleto" which is a diminutive of "ballo" which means to dance but also from the Latin "ballo, ballare" which means "to dance". 

It was imported and developed in France by Catherine de Medici during her marriage to Henry II. 

It will become the dance of Louis XIV. 

This dance will know its hours of glory in France and in Russia. 

Classical dance is the dance of rigor, flexibility and grace. A ballet class lasts one hour for children and one and a half hours for teenagers and adults.

The class starts with a warm-up at the bar during which we prepare the "middle". 

About 45 minutes during which the whole body is solicited: 

 head carriage, arm carriage, back carriage, leg and foot work. 

After the bar comes the "middle" with exercises of clears, spins and jumps .... 

Today, the vocabulary of classical dance is the same all over the world and mainly taught with the French vocabulary. 

Modern-Jazz dance

The term "Jazz" appeared in 1917 to designate a syncopated music derived from the black American culture. It is then used for dance. Charleston, swing and rock belong to the big family of jazz dance. This dance of mixture between different cultures and in particular of the African culture is in constant evolution.

Several personalities have participated in the evolution and enrichment of jazz dance such as Katherine Dunham, Jack Cole, and Matt Mattox are among the pioneers of jazz dance. 

Modern dance is a dance that uses other elements than Jazz dance such as contact with the ground, body weight, falling...

Generally speaking, the term "modern-jazz" is used to define a class that combines two dance styles: jazz and modern.

It represents a mixture of several cultures. This dance wants to be harmonious and sensual while keeping a control of the movements and the positions. 

The class starts with about 45 minutes of barre (warm-up in the middle) during which the body is warmed up and positions are set. After the bar, the teacher proposes movements of steps, spins or jumps. 

The class ends with a choreography.

Contemporary dance

The definition of contemporary dance is often unclear to many people. The term "contemporary" means "of our time". It is therefore the "dance of today", dance nourished through the years by the people who have practiced it. The contemporary dance follows the modern danceIn the years from 1920 to 1960, it revolutionized the codes of classical dance with, in the United States: Isaodra Duncan, Doris Humphrey, Martha Graham and in Germany: Mary Wigman, Rudolph Laban or Kurt Joss.

It is a dance that wants to be different from what has happened and danced "before". Improvisations in class or on stage are numerous. It brings to life the sensitivity and personality of each person and allows to exploit the capacities of body movement and personal expression. Dance is inspired by other arts such as theater, painting, cinema .... The fundamental principles of contemporary dance are time, energy, weight, space and sensation. The class starts with a 45 minute barre, usually on the floor, which leads to standing and working on posture and technique. There will be frequent movement and improvisation workshops during the class which ends with a choreography.


Hip-hop dance refers to street dance styles performed primarily to hip-hop music or that have evolved within the framework of hip-hop culture. It includes a wide range of styles, primarily breaking, locking and popping, which were created in the 1970s and made popular by dance teams in the United States. The television show Soul Train and the movie Flashdance (1980) brought hip-hop dancing to a wider audience. Hip-hop dance is generally characterized by strong rhythms, emphasis on off-beats or downbeats, and often improvised movements. However, Hip Hop dance is not limited to one style or method - it encompasses a wide range of techniques from various street and club dance styles. As Hip Hop culture has grown and diversified, so has Hip Hop dance. Today, Hip Hop dancers can be found all over the world, performing in a wide variety of settings, from street battles and underground competitions to professional stage and film performances.

Latin dances

Any Latin music lover knows that the rhythm just needs to be danced to. And what better way to dance than with a partner? That's where Latin dances come in. Originating in countries like Cuba, Argentina and Brazil, these dances are characterized by their passionate movements and sensual rhythms. The most popular Latin dances are salsa, tango and mambo. Salsa is a fast dance that originated in Cuba. It is usually danced to salsa music, which varies in tempo. Tango is a slower, more intimate dance that originated in Argentina. It is often considered a very romantic dance because it requires the dancers to be very close to each other. The mambo is a faster paced dance from Cuba. It is usually danced to Cuban mambo music, which has a wide variety of tempos. Whether you are looking for a fast dance or a slow, sensual dance, there is a Latin dance for you. So put on some salsa music and let the rhythm take you away.

The Salsa

Salsa is a vibrant and energetic dance that is sure to get your heart pumping. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned professional, salsa classes are a great way to learn this popular dance. During the class, you will learn the basic steps and concepts of salsa, as well as how to lead and follow your partner. You will also have the opportunity to practice your moves with other students. Salsa classes are a great way to meet new people and improve your dance skills. Plus, they're just plain fun! If you're looking for a way to spice up your life, salsa classes are definitely worth taking.


For many people, taking tango lessons is the perfect way to learn this sensual dance. Not only is it a great workout, but it's also a lot of fun. And for those who have never danced salsa before, learning tango can be a great introduction to this popular Latin dance. Tango originated in South America, and its roots go back to the 18th century. It was originally danced by slaves and peasants, before becoming popular among the upper class. Today, tango is enjoyed by people from all walks of life. Whether you want to improve your dancing skills or just have fun, taking tango lessons is a great way to do so.

The Samba

Samba is a lively and rhythmic dance of Brazilian origin. Samba music is characterized by a strong, syncopated rhythm and usually features complex, intertwining melodies. Samba is danced in pairs and is known for its fast footwork and suggestive hip movements. Samba is often performed at carnivals and other festive occasions. It is also popular as a competitive ballroom dance. Samba originated on the streets of Brazil, but has since gained popularity around the world. Samba dancers often wear brightly colored costumes and headdresses, and the dance is often accompanied by live samba music. Samba is a fun and energetic dance that is sure to get your feet moving!

The bachata

Bachata is a Latin American dance that originated in the Dominican Republic. It is a sensual dance that is often performed close to your partner, with lots of hip movement. Bachata is usually danced to slower music and the steps are easy to learn. Whether you attend a Latin party at your local club or take dance classes, learning bachata is a great way to move and have fun.

The cha-cha

The cha-cha is a popular dance that originated in Cuba in the 1950s. The cha-cha is danced to a 4/4 rhythm, and the basic steps consist of moving forward and backward with the feet close to the ground. The cha-cha is characterized by fast, lively movements and is often accompanied by fast-paced music. The cha-cha is a fun and lively dance that is perfect for parties and other social gatherings. It's also a relatively simple dance to learn, making it a great choice for beginners. Whether you're looking to have fun or learn a new skill, cha-cha is a great option.

The Mambo

Mambo is a popular Latin dance that originated in Cuba in the 1940s. Mambo evolved from the Cuban dance known as Danzon and quickly became a hit in Havana's nightclubs. Due to its popularity, Mambo quickly spread to the United States, where it was adopted by the African American and Latino communities. Mambo has continued to evolve over the years, and today it is danced all over the world. Whether you are looking for a fun way to exercise or a lively way to enjoy a night out, Mambo is sure to get your feet moving!

The Merengue

Merengue is a dance style that originated in the Dominican Republic. It is a lively and catchy dance, usually performed to fast music. Merengue is danced in pairs, each partner holding the other by the waist. The lead dancer sets the pace of the dance and the other dancers follow suit. Merengue is known for its strong rhythms and simple steps. The basic step is to take a large step forward with the lead foot and then tap the heel of the back foot on the floor. Merengue is a popular dance that is often performed at weddings and parties. It is a great way to get people moving and dancing together.

Now you know more about the different dances offered in dance schools. All you have to do is choose the one(s) that suits you and go enjoy and dance! 

The Wellness expert for Oktofit :



I have been dancing since I was 4 years old, I followed the teacher's course at Studio Harmonic in Paris and I currently teach in the East of France.