The 13 dance instructors at this alternative fitness facility believe that staying healthy doesn't have to be boring. That's why they enthusiastically lead classes that help ladies slim their silhouettes with flirty dance routines and aerobatic moves performed while swirling around a pole or perched atop a chair. Their beginner courses set participants on the sultry road to fitness with basic moves, whereas their advanced courses set calories ablaze with gravity-defying techniques that also help gals reach the top of flagpoles without praying to George Washington. Beyond the classroom, the instructors host parties for ladies looking for a lively bachelorette party or girls' night out.
Arthur Murray has been a leading name in franchise dance since 1912, when the entrepreneur began selling mail-order dance lessons. Expanding his reach, he enlisted teachers to spread his signature dance lessons on first-class steamships and skyrocketed to fame in the '30s after introducing the public to such dances as the Lambeth Walk and the Big Apple. By the 1950s, Arthur and his wife, Kathryn, were hosting their own highly popular TV show on ABC, the Arthur Murray Dance Party, which ran for 12 years. Today, Arthur Murray's team prepares students for rug cutting at special events and weekend nightclub jaunts. Clients who arrive to lessons partnerless will be paired up with other classmates as the instructors assess their current skill level and make recommendations on the most appropriate program. Throughout lessons, instructors teach the foundations of two to four dances from a long list of styles that range from Latin to country-western, helping students to learn basic step patterns, timing, and the ability to lead or follow.
At Commotion, the instructors embrace a full spectrum of movement-based activities and exercises by offering three distinct pathways for students to pursue. The dance teachers welcome attendees of all ages, either introducing newcomers to the fundamental footwork of ballet, jazz, hip hop, tap, and breakdancing, or helping advanced students master more complex skills. When it comes to Pilates, the instructors practice the slightly modernized Stott method as they lead mat classes as well as apparatus sessions, which use the Reformer to add gentle amounts of spring resistance to the various exercises. The fitness-oriented offerings encompass everything from Zumba and Piloxing to TRX suspension training and barre workouts, toning muscles and increasing cardiovascular health.
More than 10,000 students have honed their dance stylings in the Loudoun School of Ballet’s 6,000-square-foot dance facility, their steps echoing through three studios equipped with Marley floors and acoustic ceilings. The school’s graduates have gone on to careers at professional companies and on Broadway thanks to a rigorous year-round training program that starts as early as preschool. The studio's accredited and award-winning instructors sometimes get an assist from guest talent, who encourage upper-level pupils' artistic growth without filling their ballet slippers with fertilizer.
The studio also hosts an adult program geared more toward developing fitness than professional dance careers. Ballet, jazz, and tap courses grant students poise and the ability to conceal cheat sheets of dance tips in their leotards, and fitness courses and Zumba’s easy-to-follow Latin dance moves burn calories and raise heart rates.
Dance King Studios owner Adam King leads his instructors in tutoring feet to move to the rhythms of salsa, bachata, tango, and swing. But his rug-cutting team doesn't simply teach students how to dance—the studio also hosts parties that encourage dancers to socialize as they show off their skills in a low-stress setting free of hecklers or trapdoors. The team also helps wedding-bound couples find their footing for first dances. Adam told Leesburg Today that he loves putting nervous pairs at ease. “Most people say they have two left feet, but I'm about overturning those ideas,” he said. “Anybody can learn to dance, it's a matter of giving yourself a chance.”
PA DanceSport provides expert toe-twiddling instruction in both Latin and ballroom dance with two open dance sessions every week held inside their 3,000-square-foot floating maple ballroom. During private lessons, trained instructors—two of whom have competition experience—help prancing participants make first wedding dances more memorable, and first cup of coffee congas less conspicuous. Group lessons tackle a range of styles from traditional quickstep and swing, to fast-paced salsa and Zumba, eradicating the self-conscious sidestep from rumba repertoires. Check the class schedule for more information.