This year Keith and I have decided to learn to ballroom dance online.
You see, we’ve taken ballroom dancing lessons a few times at a local dance company and a local college, and it’s been fun. But we always learn about 2 or 3 steps for each dance, and then that’s all we can do. So we’ll be on a cruise ship, wanting to dance, and after about 20 seconds of the song we’re all done. We have no more moves!
Yesterday I was sharing with you a list of hobbies married couples can do. (Download that list for your phone so you can brainstorm with your husband!) I know that many of you read that and thought, “well, sure, we could do that if we had a ton of money, an army of baby-sitters, and a boatload of time.” And so you scrolled right past.
(You did. Admit it!)
But I want to show you how you can actually learn something and start a new hobby (like ballroom dancing!) with relatively little time, very little money, and no baby-sitters at all. And that’s because so many things can be learned online now! I’m going to give you an example with ballroom dancing, because we’ve really enjoyed doing this one together, but then I’ll show you a bunch of other things you can learn together and start developing a great hobby!
Keith and I decided a few months ago to search for online ballroom dancing lessons, and we found Leon from Passion4Dancing. He teaches all different types of ballroom dancing steps, with more and more complexity. You can learn swing, chacha, rhumba, jive, foxtrot, waltz, and so many more (and it’s okay if you don’t know what those words mean at first!) Each video is about 8 minutes long, and each video builds on each other, so at the end of a few videos you have a routine. And then you can learn some more and just keep building on it! It’s quite good fun.
(these links are affiliate links; but I reached out to Leon AFTER Keith and I already started using the videos saying, “I want to share this with my readers!”)
So I want to show you that it really works. Our daughter Katie is home for reading week, and I asked her to help us film learning the Rhumba.
(Seriously, isn’t my husband the sweetest to film this with me?)
Here’s what we do: We pick a dance, and we decide that we’re going to get good at it.
So we learn one step a night, and then we download some of the suggested music selections for that dance and practice with them. That helps us overcome the other problem I’ve found with traditional ballroom dancing lessons: you get used to doing the waltz or whatever with one particular song. And then you’re at a loss if another song comes on! Now we can try with different music, and try out the new steps, and it’s great! And then next time we’re at a wedding or we go out dancing or we go on a cruise, we can actually do more than just two steps and make it past 20 seconds.
I know a lot of guys don’t want to learn to dance because they don’t want to look like fools. But this is so super easy. No one else is watching you. Leon breaks down the steps for the guy twice, and then for the woman twice, and then even gives tips for the guy on how to lead and what to do with your arms. So it’s really not hard. And then he shows you how to put all the steps you’re learning together!
We’re working on rhumba now because that’s our weakest dance. (We actually already know 4 or 5 steps in swing or foxtrot, so we’re good there for 50 seconds before we have to repeat!). But we’re going to move on to the advanced lessons for some of the other dances and try to get even better.
Even if you want to create a dance for your wedding (because I know I have a lot of engaged women on the site!), you can do it this way by building ballroom dancing steps together, learning one a night, and having a complete dance at the end. And no one will laugh at you!
Check out Passion4Dancing to start learning how to ballroom dance online, in the comfort of your own home.
And Leon has given us the code Sheila15 to get 15% off your subscription, good until the end of November.
Here’s one reason we really enjoy ballroom dancing: It’s just plain romantic.
Keith was never the biggest fan of dancing. He always feels like he overanalyzes the steps and it doesn’t come naturally to him. But once we’ve practiced, and we’re good at something, we really do have a lot of fun. And he’s holding me, and he’s leading me, and we get to do something active–it’s really kinda sexy. I had to talk him into lessons when we first started. He did it just because he wanted to make me happy. But he honestly does enjoy it now–once he’s mastered the steps and feels confident. And he always jokes that it’s a good way to get me in the mood! Because seriously–it is romantic.
What if dancing isn’t your thing? That’s okay! You can take lots of other classes online and learn to do something interesting. I’ve always been a big fan of Craftsy, because they offer detailed, step-by-step classes in just about any craft imaginable. I’m a bit knitting fan, and their knitting classes are great. But it’s doubtful that your husband would want to learn to knit with you!
But what about learning photography together? Or furniture refinishing? Or even gourmet cooking, like focusing on a specific cuisine? You could just pick something you want to learn this month, and then every Thursday night you work through the lesson, or something like that. And you have fun together and learn something useful.
Check out all of Craftsy’s possibilities here (and don’t be deceived by all the knitting on the home page! There really are guy-friendly courses in there).
Here’s the point, people: There really is no excuse to spending your life watching Netflix or just browsing social media all night. It’s not that there isn’t anything else to do; it’s that you simply haven’t discovered it yet! And if you can actually DO something together, where you can communicate and laugh and learn something, you’ll build memories and build your relationship.
And it doesn’t have to take a lot of time! We dance for maybe 15 minutes a night. That’s it. One video and some practising. But we’re building on what we’re learning, and it makes us feel closer.
I’m trying to urge you this week towards better communication as a couple and having more fun together.
And I truly don’t think it has to take that much time or that much effort. It’s just inserting a few new things that will help you laugh and learn into the schedule.
Winter’s coming up here in Canada, and that means we’ll be stuck indoors for a lot of months. Sure, we can do a few outdoor activities, but it’s not as fun, and I’m just not that hardy. So I’m going to take advantage of all the things that we can do from home to build our marriage! What about you?
Let me know: Have you ever taken a class with your spouse? What did you learn? Let’s talk in the comments!