LINE DANCING LESSONS

Country line dancing is a favorite past time for many country music fans. People of all ages love country line dance songs. Great credit should be given to Billy Ray Cyrus’ ‘Achy Breaky Heart’ for launching the line dance craze in the early ‘90s, and inspiring several artists to record ‘danceable’ country hits.

From ‘Boot Scootin’ Boogie’ to ‘Honky Tonk Badonkadonk,’ there are several different line dances that are choreographed to any one song.

Basics

The country line dance is a dance with repeated sequence of steps in which a group of people dance in one or more lines, all facing the same direction, and executing the steps at the same time.

Walls

Each dance is said to consist of a number of walls. A wall is the direction in which the dancers face at any given time: the front (the direction faced at the beginning of the dance), the back or one of the sides. Dancers may change direction many times during a sequence, and may even, at any given point, be facing in a direction half-way between two walls; but at the end of the sequence they will be facing the original wall or any of the other three.

In a one-wall dance, the dancers face the same direction at the end of the sequence as at the beginning.

In a two-wall dance, repetitions of the sequence end alternately at the back and front walls. In other words, the dancers have effectively turned through 180 degrees during one set.

In a four-wall dance, the direction faced at the end of the sequence is 90 degrees to the right or left from the direction in which they faced at the beginning. As a result, the dancers face each of the four walls in turn at the end of four consecutive repetitions of the sequence, before returning to the original wall.

Counts

The most common structure in country line dancing is the 8-count. Each number is a solid beat.  Line dancing is designed for your steps to land on the solid beat and/or on the ‘half’ beats (in between the solid beats).  We often refer to the ‘half’ beats as ‘and’ beats.  When you’re steps land on the solid beats and in between the beats, it is syncopated.

solid 8-count: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

syncopated 8-count: 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & 5 & 6 & 7 & 8

Many country line dances have a combination of solid and syncopated steps.

example: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5&6, 7&8   or 1&2, 3, 4, 5&6, 7, 8

Country line dances usually consist of multiple sets of 8-counts to complete one wall.  Many popular country line dances are 32-count (that is, 4 sets of 8-counts before starting on a new wall), but there are shorter 24-count line dances, as well as 48-, 56-, and 64-count line dances.

Videos

We have included 5 videos of common country line dance songs we dance to as a tutorial.

Song Artist Line Dance Level
Sweet Home Alabama Lynyrd Skynyrd Sweet Home Alabama Beginners
Boot Scootin’ Boogie Brooks & Dunn Electric Slide Beginners
Achy Breaky Heart Billy Ray Cyrus Achy Breaky Beginners- Intermediary
God Bless Texas Little Texas Blessed Texas Intermediary
Play Something Country Brooks & Dunn Houston Slide Intermediary