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Get Your Spring Moving with Samba

Spring is the season that signifies new life, and there’s no better way to celebrate life than with the zesty, romping fun of samba dancing! This Brazilian style mixes both elegance and athleticism, bringing dancers together in a sultry expression of vivacious passion. Samba has many moves, and the variations require rhythm and coordination, but also emphasize movement. Here’s a few ways how.


Samba is less about control and more about movement, and even the basics show this. The simplest movements range from the initial bounce in the knees and ankles, to keeping the rhythm in the cross stepping with the side-to-side, to even the rounding hip sway in the whisk. Even the square step exaggerates leg movement. These basics are how samba keeps you moving at one with the music. 

Cho Chua

The cho chua, pronounced “show-shwah,” is a move designed for specific notes and lyrics to music. The move exercises the hips and helps practice with rhythm. It begins with a side-to-side sway of the hips, while keeping the basic samba bounce in the knees. In tandem with small steps to the sides, the hip sway becomes more pronounced, a bounce of its own. When this motion is comfortable, you add one more bounce to the hip, like an extra music note. After getting the rhythm there, it’s time to exaggerate the bounce by swaying the hip even more, while slightly lifting the opposite knee. This puts space between the legs, and emphasizes the entire move. Topping the cho chua off is a slight hop with a tap of the toes. For fun, you can add an upward pump of the arms, to solidify the rhythm with the music.


Pagode is not just a sub-genre of samba, but also a style of music, and when Brazilian people refer to pagode, they’re often referring to both. The dance itself is a combination of the different aspects of samba, with all the basics, but with greatly exaggerated steps, hops, shoulder rolls, and hip swings. Even more so is the torso twisting that moves in rhythm with the spine and the neck. Pagode is very high energy, and provides a great workout, and while it requires a lot of practice, it’s one of the most fun samba dance moves you can do.

Dance over to the Arthur Murray Dance Studio today to get that spring in your step with samba! Call Arthur Murray and you’ll see just how this is done! Dance on it to our location at: 1711 N College Ave, Bloomington, IN 47404.  Or call us at: (812) 334-0553.

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