SQUARE DANCING DEFINITIONS
Click on a term or scroll through the whole list.
Down The Line
On To The Next
- Alamo Style
- A circle of dancers who are alternately facing in and out with hands
joined. If the Alamo Style is called after a Left Allemande, retain your
Allemande Left hold with your corner, then join Right hands with Partner.
- Two couples facing 2 couples.
- To release hands, to let go.
- Two parallel lines of four dancers with one line facing down the line and
the other facing the opposite direction.
- Down The Line
- In facing lines, two faced lines or ocean waves, dancers will execute the
call with the others in the same formation.
- Face In: Turn 90' to face into the formation. Face Out:
Turn 90' to face out from the formation. Face the Sides: Directs a head
person(s) to turn his back on his partner and face the sides. Face the
Heads: Directs a side person(s) to turn his back on his partner and face the
heads. Face Those Two: Designated persons will face those with whom they
have just worked. Face To The Middle: A call usually directed to active
couples to change their present facing direction to make a quarter turn toward
the center of the square. When in an even numbered line dancers should turn a
quarter to face the center of that line. Face Your Own: Designates a
quarter turn to face partner.
- The term flip is used to mean an action where the designated dancer(s) will
roll 180' in either direction, assuming the position that was originally
adjacent to him. It is the same action that would occur if the designated dancer
(the "flipper") was asked to do a run around an imaginary adjacent
dancer and into the imaginary dancer's position on the floor.
- For each man, his starting position in the square; for each lady, the home
position of the man with whom she is at the time of the call.
- The men will bow and the ladies curtsy. Men turn slightly to face your
partner, making eye contact. Place left hand behind back or at left hip, palm
out. Place right foot in front of left foot. The right foot should be pointed
toward the lady with the toe touching the floor. Man's right hand holds lady's
left hand. Both legs are straight, with weight on the back foot. An acceptable
traditional variation of styling is that the men bow slightly from the waist as
the ladies acknowledge with a curtsy. Ladies turn slightly to face your partner
making eye contact. Left foot should be pointed forward with toe touching the
floor, right foot in back. Right hand holds skirt toward center of the square,
right arm bent at elbow. Place left hand in partner's right hand. Both legs
straight with weight on the back foot. To Your Corner: Men, right hand holding
partner's left hand turn slightly to face corner making eye contact then follow
above......Ladies left hand in partner's right hand, turn slightly to face
corner making eye contact then follow above.
- This movement was so named because the configuration of the formation
resembles an Hourglass with it's pinched-up middle and bulging ends. A simple
way to create the Hourglass formation is to start from normal 2-Faced Lines with
the Girls as Centers. Then have the girls circulate 1/2. Note: At this point the
two Center Girls can Touch Right Hands and represent the pinched-up Centers of
the Hourglass formation while the other three dancers represent the bulging
ends. Dancing movements in the Hourglass are similar to dancing them in the
- Imperfect Diamond
- All four dancers in the Diamond will be mixed in their facing direction
such as Centers facing Clockwise and Points facing Counterclockwise. This is
also known as Face-to-Face Diamonds.
- Line of 4: 4 dancers in a line facing the same direction. 2-Faced
Line: 4 dancers in a line with the 2 on each end facing in the same
direction and opposite that of the other end pair.
- On To The Next
- After executing a movement with a couple (or single dancer) the active
person or couple will leave that position and move on to the next position in
the direction they were going.
- Perfect Diamond
- All dancers within the Diamond are facing in the same relative direction,
i.e. All facing Clockwise or all facing Counterclockwise.
- Quarter More
- A one-quarter continuation of the movement then being executed.
- The call to change a Right hand Star to a Left, a clockwise moving circle
to a counterclockwise circle, etc.
- Roll Promenade
- When a Couple Promenade is called just before the completion of any figure
normally ending in a Courtesy Turn, the dancers will do a Wheel Around or "Roll
Promenade" in Promenade position rather than awkwardly switching from
Courtesy Turn position.
- A square is formed by four couples facing in, with the back of each couple
parallel to a different wall in the hall. Space across the square is 7-10 feet.
The lady is on the right of the gentleman. The couples are numbered 1, 2, 3, 4
around the square to the right counterclockwise starting with the couple whose
backs are closest to the front of the hall and the caller. Head couples are 1
and 3. Side couples are 2 and 4. The lady directly to the man's right is his
partner. Next lady to his right is known as his right hand lady. The lady across
the set from him is his opposite. The lady to his left is his corner or left
- Step Thru
- The term indicates that when dancers are in waves they release handholds
and take one step forward, passing the adjacent dancer to await the next call.
- Mini-Wave: 2 dancers holding hands and facing opposite directions.
Holding right hands is a right handed wave, and left hands is left handed
Ocean Wave: 4 dancers in a line alternating in facing direction. If the
end dancer and their adjacent center are holding right hands then it is a right
handed ocean wave and vice versa. Mini Tidal: 6 dancers in a line
alternating in facing direction. Same rule applies for right and left as in
Ocean Wave. Tidal Wave: 8 dancers in a line alternating in facing
direction. Same rule applies for right and left as in Ocean Wave.
This page was last revised on November
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