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Wedding First Dance: Tips and Tricks for Beginners

The first dance is often one of the highlights of the celebration, it is certainly one of my favourite parts of the day to photograph. Whether you're a seasoned dancer or have two left feet, learning a few dance moves can help you impress your guests and create cherished memories. In this article, we will provide you with valuable tips and tricks for beginners to embark on your DIY wedding dance lessons. Get ready to shine on the dance floor!

First Dance for a wedding couple in a marquee

Choose the Right Song for your First Dance

Select a song that holds special meaning for you and your partner. Whether it's a romantic ballad or an upbeat tune, make sure it resonates with your personalities and the overall atmosphere of your wedding. Consider the tempo, lyrics, and emotional connection when making your selection.

Choose the Right Style

Before diving into dance lessons, consider the style of dance that suits you and your partner's personalities and the theme of your wedding. Classic choices include the romantic Waltz or the lively Swing, but don't be afraid to explore other genres like Latin dances such as Salsa or even a fun and funky Hip-Hop routine. Selecting a style that resonates with you will make the learning process more enjoyable.

First Dance for a wedding couple in a Clontarf Castle

Set a Realistic Timeline

Begin your dance lessons well in advance, at least three to six months before your wedding day. This will allow you enough time to learn and practice your routine without feeling overwhelmed. Breaking the learning process into smaller, manageable steps will prevent stress and give you and your partner time to perfect your moves.

First Dance for a wedding couple in county Clare

Find a Qualified Instructor

While the focus here is on DIY dance lessons, having a qualified instructor can make a world of difference. Look for a local dance studio or instructor who specializes in wedding dances. They can provide personalized guidance, tailor the routine to your skill level, and help you refine your technique. Additionally, they can teach you essential dance skills, such as leading and following, which will make your performance seamless.

First Dance for a wedding couple in Martinstown House, the barn.

Warm-Up and Stretch

Before every practice session, warm up your muscles to prevent injuries and improve flexibility. Perform light cardio exercises and engage in stretching routines to prepare your body for dancing. This simple step will enhance your performance and make you feel more comfortable on the dance floor.

First Dance for a wedding couple in Inch Hideaway in Cork

Start with Basic Steps

As beginners, it's essential to start with basic dance steps. Focus on learning the fundamental movements and build your routine from there. Mastering the basics will provide a strong foundation for more complex sequences. Your instructor can break down each step, ensuring you understand the technique and allowing you to progress at your own pace.

First Dance for a wedding couple in Cloughjordan House in Tipperary

Practice Regularly

Consistency is key when it comes to learning any new skill, including dance. Set aside dedicated practice time each week to rehearse your routine. Practicing regularly will help you improve muscle memory and develop confidence in your movements. It's also an opportunity for you and your partner to bond and enjoy the process together.

Film and Evaluate Your Progress

Recording your dance sessions allows you to objectively evaluate your progress. Film yourselves from different angles and review the footage to identify areas that need improvement. Analyse your footwork, posture, and overall synchronisation. It's a valuable tool that enables you to make adjustments and polish your routine.

First Dance for a wedding couple in Kinsale, Cork, Groom looking surprised

Practice in Your Wedding Shoes

As your big day approaches, practice your dance routine while wearing your wedding shoes. This will help you get accustomed to the footwear and ensure they are comfortable for dancing. Consider the height of your heels and how it may affect your balance and movements. Practicing in your wedding shoes will eliminate any surprises or discomfort during the actual dance.

First Dance for a wedding couple in Bellinter House, outdoors, with fairy-lights


By following these tips and tricks for beginners, you'll be well on your way to mastering a memorable wedding dance. Remember, the goal is not perfection but rather to create a beautiful and meaningful moment with your partner. Embrace the joy of learning together and celebrate your unique love story through dance.

Remember, even if you encounter challenges along the way, keep a positive attitude and enjoy the journey. Your wedding dance is an expression of your love and commitment, and it will be cherished by both you and your guests.


Stephen O'Sullivan is a documentary wedding photographer. It appears he talks about himself in the third person these days....... Apologies.... I am an award winning Wedding Photographer, specialising in relaxed & fun Wedding Photography. No awkward nonsense, no excessive posing, no hogging the couple on their big day. My style is natural Wedding Photography. I live in Killaloe and I serve Tipperary, Clare, Limerick, Waterford, Cork, Wexford, Wicklow, Galway, Dublin, Kerry and anywhere in between. I would love to hear from you, get in touch here, fill in some details and get a quote.

No awkward nonsense, simply beautiful photos.



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