We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is the Rumba?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 23, 2024
Our promise to you
Musical Expert is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At Musical Expert, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The rumba refers to several Latin dance forms, which differ greatly. Almost all rumba dances are meant to infer the sexual relationship between partners. The moves can be subtle or quite obvious, depending on the type of form danced.

The Cuban rumba is very different than what one would see in a ballroom dancing competition. The dance is highly energetic and was thought to have derived directly from the dancing of African slaves from around the West Indies and the Caribbean. Dance historians date performance of this form of rumba back as early as the late 19th century. Some of the moves are so suggestive and frank, that the dance was often considered unacceptable in the countries it was performed, and was prohibited.

The Cuban rumba requires a high degree of athleticism, as it is very fast. The dance represents a seduction attempt on the part of the male, with the female standing resistant to the man’s charms. This form of rumba frequently includes acrobatic moves, like handstands, flips and cartwheels, usually performed by the male. In order to achieve sexual gratification, he must impress his female partner.

The second part of the Cuban rumba usually brings the dancers close together, and the movements are easily indicative of sexual longing. There is much what one might deem “inappropriate” body contact when the couples connect, and many moves indicate various sexual positions with the male clearly dominant. The partners are often hip to hip in dance connections. This type of form is rarely seen except in exhibitions since it requires a great deal of space to perform it properly. The dancers are mostly apart, and utilize a significant amount of floor space while performing very different acrobatic moves far apart from each other.

Since the Cuban rumba was considered improper, a new dance, called the son rumba, was developed. This dance is much slower in tempo and has been the traditional dance adapted for Ballroom dancing competitions. A third rumba, the danzon is extremely slow, and is sometimes seen in West Coast Swing variants.

The son rumba is meant to feature the female, a distinct difference from the Cuban rumba. It is considered the bedroom dance, or the “dance of love.” The female’s moves are deliberate and seductive, as she woos her lover to the bedroom, but not too quickly. The dance is in essence a tease until its final moments, so the male acts either appreciatively or aggressively. However, when the male’s movements become hurried, the female gently repels him. In the final moment or two, the female and male dance closely together, representing fulfillment.

Son rumba was introduced to the US in the 1920s and was for a time, quite popular. However, the introduction of the mambo caused the rumba to be relatively ignored until it was reintroduced in Ballroom Dance competitions featuring Latin Dance. It now is considered both an important and exciting dance to learn, and is particularly noted for featuring the skill of the female dancer.

Musical Expert is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen , Writer
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a Musical Expert contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.

Discussion Comments

Tricia Christensen

Tricia Christensen


With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a Musical Expert contributor, Tricia...
Learn more
Musical Expert, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

Musical Expert, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.