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Are you a woman looking for a man to dance with? Maybe for it's for social dancing or just practice. Maybe it's actually for competitive dancing. Regardless, you have probably found that the gender imbalance (more women than men) make this hard for a woman. It's certainly not like there are men floating around each woman hoping to get her attention is it? I have been asked by a number of women who subscribe to my emails on techniques to improve partner dance ability about how to find a dance partner. The reasons for dance range from simple social dancing to practice to competition. So I decided to talk to some women who are good at getting men to dance with them, talk to some men about dancing with women they do not know and review what I know about male psychology to come up with some suggestions about how to get a male dance partner. Understanding men in dance One of the biggest issues men have (unless they have been dancing for years so they're probably a dance instructor) is that they will not be at a level equal to the woman's level, and so she will not appreciate his efforts. Basically, men don't want to feel that they are taking; they want to be giving. So if you seem to be a good dancer (or even just possibly better than the man), then he will feel you'd rather not dance with him, and he will not ask you to dance. Women who get the dance partners I have heard a few women complain about how men seem to have their favourites. And it is true the women who will get asked to dance most are the ones that men feel compelled to dance with. Two things will compel a man: attractiveness and comfort with the woman. He either wants to get to know her, he already does or he feels that she is open to dancing with him. Still, such a woman probably only gets the men who still feel certain that they are at her level asking her to dance. However, I know women who I have seen dance with many men in one night and those men were complete strangers. These women did something different - they asked the men. And they never got a 'no' - men feel obliged to keep a woman happy. If a man says no, then he will probably have a good reason (like an injury or being close to a heart attack). Male psychology All of us like to be told we're good. However, men love hearing it from women. On the flip side, men are concerned with making a bold false claim so one is unlikely to take any kind of action without certainty. Men are worried about pride and reputation. There is nothing wrong with not being good at something as long as you don't falsely act as though you are.


Strategies for getting a male dance partner Social dancing If you simply want to dance with men socially, then it helps to engage with everyone in a friendly manner. If you frequent a regular place where you dance and others are regulars too, then strike up a conversation with different people (especially men). They will get to know you, feel comfortable with you, and then be more likely to ask you to dance. Just as an example - while writing this I have realised that I dance mostly with women I know from dance class, without thinking about, it simply because I know them. For competition If you want to find a partner for a dance comp, then it's a bit different. You can always go to websites like dancepartner.com, but that will still have the gender imbalance. Therefore, you're better off searching for men who have not yet declared their intention for comp. So let's look at this untapped source. Remember, it will always help to know people so that you have more connections, and you can network. For this approach you will need to overcome male hesitation about dance competitions. Remember the following: men don't like to drag a woman down with less skill and men don't want to make bold claims they can't be certain about backing up. This means that a man is very unlikely to express a direct interest in competition dancing even if he is interested. Also, remember the following: men love compliments from women and they would rather give to women than take from them. That means if they are sure a woman would value what they have to offer, then they would probably commit. So you basically need a man who does not yet feel he is up to dancing competitively (with you or anyone) and then make him think he is. The easiest way to do that is to ask, but ask in the right way. If you ask him, then the man can now safely assume that you are either happy with his ability to dance or ability to improve to the required level with practice. This now means he will not think he is taking from you. Also, the fact that you asked means he has been complimented so the notion of dancing with you has positive ego boosting connotations. Additionally, you offer social proof, if someone has asked him to dance, then they have given unsolicited and independent approval of his dance ability. Therefore, he is not making any unsubstantiated bold claims. So you can see that you asking him does do a lot to reduce the hesitation in a man when it comes to competitive dance, but how to ask? It's assumed that you know a number of men who you think would be up to the challenge in your dancing network. Pick one (this can be tried on a few guys and letting them know that another guy might jump in first might motivate them) and just start talking about the notion of competition dancing. Then simply ask if he would like to try dance with you in a competition. The important word here is 'try'. It suggests that it is something that is to be investigated by trying, and you're not going to be a control freak. No one (well few of us) likes to be completely controlled by another in


any part of our lives. Keeping it casual will allow for a sense of control, and reduce the chance of him saying no because he feels like you're trying to talk him into it (this is where having a few other options helps too). Social dance in a strange place Now what if you're dancing socially and you don't know anyone? The same principle applies if you ask a man. It says that you think he is up to standard or if he isn't, then you're ok with it. So once again he needn't think that he is taking as opposed to giving. And as mentioned above, it's very unlikely that a man will say no. I never do and I am yet to meet another man who does! So if you want to dance, then don't be scared to ask.

Clint Steele is a social dancer with an interest in learning and how people can get better at something with minimum time and effort. http://www.dancebetternow.com Get a free e-book on how to dance better now.

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How to Get a Male Dance Partner