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How Do I Re-Create Dances from the 1960s?

Patti Kate
Patti Kate

To re-create dances from the 1960s, do research on music and clothing styles from that decade. Watch TV shows from that decade that showcased dances from the 1960s. You may be able to find videos and books relating to music and dance from that era at your local library. If you're planning on throwing a party, make a list of several dances from the 1960s that you and your guests can re-create then look them up on the Internet. Some of the dances include the mashed potato, the swim, the twist, and the funky chicken.

You need to fully understand the 1960s dance culture to be able to re-create the dance moves from that decade. As you do your research, look up dance crazes and fads they were the most popular among the youth of that era. Begin with dances such as the Madison and the twist. For greater authenticity as you perform these dance moves, try to find teen television shows on video. If possible, watch old clips of television shows such as American Bandstand and Shindig, which provided a platform for teenagers who performed dances of that generation.

Tie-dyed t-shirts were popular in the 60s.
Tie-dyed t-shirts were popular in the 60s.

Consider signing up for a dance class that focuses on the 1960s style of dance. Your dance instructor can help you re-create dances from the 1960s, but it might take several lessons before you can master the moves. Choose a dance school that employs certified instructors.

If you search your local video store or look online, you should be able to find a DVD on 1960s dance instruction. Choose a DVD that offers several dances from that decade if you want to master a variety of dances. If you attend a dance school, there are several levels to master, each with a set amount of time for a lesson. If the school features special events and performances, be sure you attend. This can help you see first hand how the dances from the 1960s are performed.

Love beads were popular during the 1960s.
Love beads were popular during the 1960s.

When you re-create dances from the 1960s, you'll have more fun if you project a credible 1960s appearance. Therefore, you need to learn which styles of clothing to wear for your dance routine. Doing so is relatively easy, and you can find pictures online or in books and magazines. If you're somewhat creative, you can put together your own 1960s outfit, complete with accessories such as love beads and headbands. The ladies may choose mini skirts and go-go boots, while the guys can wear turtlenecks or tie-dyed shirts, fringed vests, and bell-bottom pants.

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Discussion Comments


You need to first decide what kind of 60s dance you want to learn. The music of the sixties was all over the map just like the broader culture. 60s pop culture took on many different forms and there were all kinds of dances being performed.

Most of these had to do with the kinds of music you were into. If it was rock or rhythm and blues or jazz or folk there were different dances associated with all of them. So figure out what kind of music you are most into first and then research how people were moving to it.


The best place to start might be by asking people from that generation to teach you. You might be surprised how many of them remember the dance steps from back then and would love to revisit them with someone from a new generation.

I remember that my grandmother was a teenager in the 30s and she loved to dance. Back then and throughout her whole life. When I was a little girl she taught me a lot of the dances she did back then. People who actually lived through the times are the best link to the culture.


There are lots of great dance instructional videos that you can find for free online. I haven't checked myself but I would bet that they have them for 60s dances.

I got really interested in some of the dances I saw in the discos films from the 70s and I found a guy who has a whole series of videos about classic disco dancing. They were really well done and I was able to learn all the moves I wanted for free.

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    • Tie-dyed t-shirts were popular in the 60s.
      By: flukesamed
      Tie-dyed t-shirts were popular in the 60s.
    • Love beads were popular during the 1960s.
      By: donyanedomam
      Love beads were popular during the 1960s.