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American Rumba – Butterfly Step

Learn how to dance the Butterfly Step in American Rumba.

How to dance the Butterfly Step in American Rumba

Timing

Rumba is counted in slow, quick, quick, which equals one measure. The Butterfly Step ending with Underarm Turn takes 6 measures to complete. To complete out the phrase of music you will want to finish with a rumba box to add 2 more measures for 8 total measures.

Leader’s Footwork:

Forward Half of Box Step:

Starting in closed dance position – Left foot forward, Right foot to the side and then close the left foot to the right foot and change weight.

Crossover Break to Right:

Right foot to the side and as you take this step with your left hand with thumb on top you will lower it down signaling to the follower that you will be turning and changing direction.

Next, pivot to the right while standing on your right foot and step through with your left foot forward taking a step.

Rock forward on your left foot and then replace your weight to your right foot. As you accept the weight on your right foot turn back and face your partner. The lead will come from your left hand and your body position.

Butterfly

Next, as you face your partner take your left foot to the side and accept weight. After you have the weight on that foot you are going to turn on your left foot opening up your body to the right and bring your right foot back for a rock step and then replace the weight to your left foot.

With your left hand you will bring it slightly forward to give the signal for the rotation for the back rock step.

Crossover Break to Right:

Pivoting on your left to the left to face your parter you will take a side step with your right foot and accept weight.

Lower your left hand down signaling to the follower that you will be turning and changing direction.

Next, pivot to the right while standing on your right foot and step through with your left foot forward taking a step.

Rock forward on your left foot and then replace your weight to your right foot. As you accept the weight on your right foot turn back and face your partner.

Continue with an underarm turn and rumba box.

Timing: slow, quick, quick for 8 measures

Follower’s Footwork:

Back Half of Box Step:

Starting in closed dance position – Right foot back, left foot to the side and then close the right foot to the left foot and change weight.

Crossover Break to Left:

Step to the side with your left foot you should feel your leader lowering your right hand. This is your signal to know a change of direction is coming. As you take the step you will pivot on your left foot at then step through with your right foot taking a rock step forward.

Next, shift your weight back onto your left foot.  As you accept the weight on your left foot turn back and face your partner.

You will feel the signal to turn come from the leader through your hand and body connection.

Butterfly

Next, as you face your partner take your right foot to the side and accept weight. After you have the weight on your right foot you will feel the signal from your leader that you will be turning on your foot and opening up to your left.

Bring your left foot back for a rock step and then replace the weight to your right foot.

Crossover Break to Left:

The leader will signal you through the hand and you will turn right on your right foot to face your partner and then take a step to the side with your left foot. The leader will lowering your right hand preparing for a change of direction for the crossover. As you take the step you will pivot on your left foot at then step through with your right foot taking a rock step forward.

Next, shift your weight back onto your left foot.  As you accept the weight on your left foot turn back and face your partner.

 Continue with an underarm turn and rumba box.

Timing: slow, quick, quick for 8 measures

Rumba Technique

Sharp Turns happen with the head

When changing directions with a cross over break or any step to make it look sharp you want to quickly turn your hand and find a spot in the distance to help fix your gaze.

Also, when turning back towards your partner make a quick turn with your head and visually connect with your partner.  

Collecting your feet – Brush Pivot

What is a Brush Pivot?

A brush pivot is a fancy way to say collecting your feet together. As you take a step you want brush your feet to collect your free foot underneath your body.

When taking your pivot step to turn and do the crossover break and butterfly you want to make sure your are brushing or collecting your feet as you make that turn and the step forward or backward for the rocking action.

This is the same when you turn back to face your partner you will want to brush and collect your feet under your body before taking your next step.

Check out the video below to learn more about the Pivot Brush:

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