Tap is an exciting form of dance in which dancers wear special shoes equipped with metal taps. Tap dancers use their feet like drums to create rhythmic patterns and timely beats. The term "tap dancing" is derived from the tapping sound produced when the small metal plates on the dancer's shoes touch a hard floor or surface. A common style of tap dancing is called "classical tap." Classical tappers use their arms and upper bodies to blend movements of ballet or jazz into their tap routines. "Hoofers" try to use every part of their shoes to make their feet sound like drums.Tap dancers stay light on their feet and tend to dance to the melodies of music, rather than to the beats.
Beginner must keep in mind to warm-up and stretch the muscles of the legs and feet. Dancers practice a series of basic steps, adding more difficult combinations as they become more proficient. Tap dancing is a vigorous form of dance, requiring a great deal of physical fitness. Many kids as well as adults tap dance for fun and exercise. It builds aerobic fitness as well as muscle control.
Tap dancing is mastered through lots and lots of practice. Beginning tap dance classes focus on learning single tap steps, then incorporating the steps into series of combinations. A few of the basic tap steps include the brush, flap, shuffle, and ball change. Tap dancers strive to produce clean tap sounds with each step.
The goal in tap dancing is to produce clear, clean sounds, with various levels of tone. Body weight should be held slightly forward, allowing most of the dancing to be done on the balls of the feet. The knees and ankles should be relaxed at all times. Beginning tap dancers are sometimes told to dance as if they were dancing on a glass floor.
Tap dancing develops a great sense of rhythm and timing. Tap instructors help students focus on music awareness while incorporating tap steps and combinations. Best of all, tap dance is a solo dance style...you don't need a partner to do it, although that's fun, too. Lastly tap dancing has proven to enhance Cognitive abilities as tap dancers must develop both mental and muscle memory to become proficient at tapping.