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The Waltz: Turning Close Together
One foundational ballroom dance is the waltz. To learn why it might be steamier than you'd think, read Groupon's introduction.
The name waltz stems from the German word waltzen, which literally means “to turn, roll, or glide”—a fitting name for a dance characterized by frequent rotations and long, sliding movements. While performing this partnered ballroom routine, dancers hold their upper bodies taut as they move across the floor in fluid circumvolution, precisely rising and falling in 3/4 time.
Early-20th-century satirist H.L. Mencken observed that "the waltz never quite goes out of fashion; it is always just around the corner…” In fact, it has remained one of Western society's most enduring and beloved forms of ballroom dance since the mid-18th century. Though initially considered controversial for its close partner proximity, the dance gradually became a respected art form as it spread throughout England, France, the United States, and the rest of the world. Today, in addition to weddings, proms, and dance competitions, the waltz has made its way into gyms, where fitness gurus praise it for being a coordination-boosting form of aerobic exercise.