Originally called Casino in its native Cuba, this unique form of salsa was popularized outside of the island in the 1970s. To help distinguish it from other styles of salsa from around the world, it is also referred to as Cuban-style salsa or Salsa Cubana.

Because of its afro-cuban roots, Cuban Salsa has a more urban, ‘street’ flavour compared to other forms influenced by ballet and ballroom dancing. Consequently, Cuban Salsa is more spontaneous. Giving dancers the freedom to frequently integrate other dances moves, such as Rumba or Cha Cha Cha.

Technically, in Cuban Salsa, the footwork is very simple and the complexity of the moves are more in the arm work than the steps. The hip movement is more visible and body isolation (torso mainly) is more pronounced. Beginners are usually relieved to find Cuban Salsa doesn’t have many fast spins!

Where the focus of salsa forms influenced by ballroom dancing is more on the women showing off and the men leading; in Cuban Salsa (under the cultural guise of males having to attract attention and tease their female partner) it’s the male partners who play show off.  This is the reason why in Cuban Salsa, the moves are not linear or in ‘slots’. And you’ll find partners are constantly dancing around each other in a circular motion. It’s all part of a playful tease 🙂

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La Rueda

La Rueda was developed in La Havana (Cuba) in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. It is also referred to as La Rueda de Casino – which literally means “wheel of casino”. It consists of pairs of dancers forming a circle with dance moves called out by one person, the caller. As part of La Rueda, men move from one partner to another when the word “Dame” is said. It is the signal for male dancer to move to the next female partner in the circle. Many of the moves involve rapidly swapping partners so you need to have mastered the basic salsa steps.

It’s great for promoting teamwork and group bonding as everyone needs to work together and make it happen! La Rueda is full of energy and fun so be ready to feel how amazing dancing Cuban salsa can be!

La Rueda guarantees the class ends with lots of smiles, laughter, and a feeling of great satisfaction!

Have a look at one of our Ruedas!