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5 Essential Basic Tap Steps Every Dancer Should Know

April 21, 2023

Tap dance is an energetic and rhythmic form of dance that has been popular for many years. It involves tapping your feet to create different sounds and rhythms. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced tap dancer, there are certain basic tap steps that every dancer should know. In this blog post, we will discuss 5 essential basic tap steps that every dancer should know.

1. Shuffle

The shuffle is one of the most basic tap steps in tap dance. It involves striking the ball of the foot on the floor, followed by a quick brush of the toe. This creates a sound that is unique to tap dance. The shuffle can be performed in various speeds and rhythms, making it a versatile step that can be used in many different choreographies.

To perform the shuffle, start by standing with your feet together. Place your weight on your left foot and lift your right foot slightly off the ground, keeping the heel in contact with the floor. Strike the ball of your right foot on the floor, followed by a quick brush of the toe. Shift your weight to your right foot and repeat the same movement with your left foot. Practice this step slowly at first, gradually increasing your speed as you become more comfortable with the movement.

2. Ball Change

The ball change is another essential basic tap step that every dancer should know. It involves shifting your weight from one foot to the other, while tapping the ball of the foot on the floor. This step is often used in choreographies that require a quick change of direction, making it an important step to master.

To perform the ball change, start by standing with your feet together. Lift your left foot slightly off the ground and tap the ball of the foot on the floor, while shifting your weight to your right foot. Quickly shift your weight back to your left foot, tapping the ball of your right foot on the floor. Practice this step slowly at first, gradually increasing your speed as you become more comfortable with the movement.

3. Maxi Ford

The Maxi Ford is a classic tap step that is commonly used in many choreographies. It involves a series of steps that create a rhythmic pattern, making it a great step to use during a tap dance performance.

To perform the Maxi Ford, start by standing with your feet together. Take a small step forward with your left foot, followed by a ball change on your right foot. Next, take a small step forward with your right foot, followed by a ball change on your left foot. Repeat this pattern, alternating your feet each time. Practice this step slowly at first, gradually increasing your speed as you become more comfortable with the movement.

4. Time Step

The time step is an essential tap step that is often used as a warm-up exercise. It involves a rhythmic pattern of steps that create a distinct sound, making it a great step to use in any tap dance routine.

To perform the time step, start by standing with your feet together. Step forward with your left foot, striking the ball of your foot on the floor. Next, step back with your left foot, striking the heel on the floor. Step forward with your right foot, striking the ball of your foot on the floor. Finally, step back with your right foot, striking the heel on the floor. Repeat this pattern, gradually increasing your speed as you become more comfortable with the movement.

5. Cramproll

The cramproll is a classic tap step that involves a series of steps that create a rhythmic pattern. This step is often used in many different choreographies and is a great step to use when you want to add some variety to your dance routine.

To perform the cramproll, start by standing with your feet together. Take a small step forward with your left foot and tap the ball of your foot on the floor. Step back with your left foot and tap the ball of your right foot on the floor. Step forward with your left foot again and tap the ball of your foot on the floor. Finally, step back with your left foot and tap the ball of your left foot on the floor. Repeat this pattern, alternating your feet each time. Practice this step slowly at first, gradually increasing your speed as you become more comfortable with the movement.

Conclusion

Whether you are a beginner or an experienced tap dancer, these 5 essential basic tap steps will help you improve your tap dancing skills. By practicing these steps regularly, you can improve your rhythm, speed, and overall performance. Remember to start slow and gradually increase your speed as you become more comfortable with the movement. With dedication and practice, you can become a skilled tap dancer who can perform a variety of tap dance routines with confidence and grace.

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