Being asked to step out of your comfort zone is one of the most terrifying things you can ask of someone. It’s something that I — and probably most of you — have struggled with.
Two years ago, I was introduced to this idea of social partnered dancing — more commonly referred to as East Coast Swing Dancing. At first, I didn’t think to much of it. I was in my first semester at SFU and experiencing all the challenges and anxieties one faces as a freshman. I tried to convince myself that trying this out would take too much effort — learning to dance, let alone swing dance, just sounded exhausting and time consuming. I hid within my comfort zone. . . there is no other way to describe it.
But deciding to push past my comfort zone and learn how to swing dance, I will never regret. I wish I could tell you that there was some life changing moment where I was encouraged to become more outgoing and try something new. . . but that moment doesn’t exist, at least not for me. One day I woke up and was just tired of my same-old same-old and decided to give swing the chance it deserved.
Learning the steps and the motion took time and perseverance, but it was worth it. It made me grow as a person and become more confident. I learnt to enjoy myself on the dance floor, regardless of how good I was. My comfort zone shattered, and I am a better person for it.
Whether you claim to possess two left feet, or even five right feet, the swing dancing community welcomes you and encourages you to join in the fun. If you are looking to try something new and push your personal limits, check out these swing hot spots for a guaranteed good time!
Every Thursday, Rhythm City Strut opens it doors to swing dancers around the Metro Vancouver. The dance floor is large and smooth, and hosts many dancers of every level and age. Once a month there is an amazing live band, so always look out for that!
Price: On band nights it’s $14 in advance and $18 at the door.
7 p.m.–9 p.m.; intro to swing dancing classes offered
9 p.m.–12 a.m.; regular dancing
Location: St. Michael’s Hall, 2474 Prince Edward Street, Vancouver
TGIF! Tired of staring blankly at a Word doc in attempt to finish a paper for a class you hate? Free your mind for a few hours and try Royal City Swing. Being walking distance from Sapperton SkyTrain station, this venue is very accessible. There is no better way to spend a night than with a bunch of welcoming strangers who will teach you a thing or two.
Price: $7 with valid student ID
Time: Friday nights; beginners lessons start at 7:45 p.m. and the party begins at 8:30 p.m.
Location: 318 Keary Street, New Westminster
Located in Abbotsford, this event is a little harder to get to. But if you ever make it out this way or if you live in the area, I strongly recommend checking this place out! The dance floor is big and smooth; you’re definitely in for a treat.
Price: $8.50 with valid student ID.
Time: Sunday nights; lesson commences at 7:45 p.m., dancing from 8:30 p.m. until midnight
Location: ASAA Hall, 33889 Essendene Avenue, Abbotsford