Summer Classes!

The last block of the school year came to an end. We will continue with drop-in summer classes each week!

It means that you can just show up and take a class if you feel like you fit the level description for that particular week.

The classes take place at Borgerstraat 112, Amsterdam 20:00 – 22:00. The class fee is €15,- (cash only).

We will create a clearer schedule soon but are struggling a little bit with the website 😉 Below you can already find the subjects, teachers and level descriptions:

July 18th: Accents & musicality with Valery & Gary
Level: Basic social dancing skills (and up).

July 25th, Absolute beginners class Lindy Hop with Kelly & Pieter
Level: This class is meant for those who are absolutely new to Lindy Hop.

August 1st, Tandem Mania 3.0 with Yara & Praveen
Level: You should be comfortable with the connection in the Tandem Charleston, know at least one basic entry- and exit.

August 8th, Lindy styling for beginners with Kelly & Sander
Level: You have danced for more than two months.

August 8th, Absolute beginners class Lindy Hop with Dolinde & Misha
Level: This class is meant for those who are absolutely new to Lindy Hop.

August 15th, Playing with the Shim Sham + st. Louis Shim Sham with Sander
Level: material for different levels will be offered, but definitely not advanced.

August 22nd, Tap in Lindy with Dolinde & Andrew
Level: Intermediate and up.

August 29th, Power moves from the greats with Yara and Andrew
Level: Intermediate and up. This will be a challenging class.

September 5th, Swing out Training session with Valery, Yara, Misha and Ben
Level: This class is open for all levels. You need to know the basic swing out from open position. You can come with a partner or small group of dancers with a similar level so you can rotate within your group.

Swingstreet goes to SOOP on June 29th

Swing Out Of Pocket (SOOP) is Amsterdam’s oldest weekly social dance.

We dance here to live music almost every Friday evening. A great place to practise everything you have been learning in class or just to have a drink with other Swing dancers!

If you have never been before this is the moment to go! We encourage you to come with your whole group so you get to dance with each other, meet the other students and see what all the fuzz is about 🙂 Your SwingStreet teachers will be there.

21:00 – 01:00
@ de Kompaszaal: KNSM-laan 311, Amsterdam.
Live music by the Compass Ballroom Stompers!
Entrance fee: €5,- (cash at the door)

Free Shim Sham class and social for Swingstreet students!

This Friday Sander will teach you the Shim Sham! A short and fun solo-routine known by Swing dancers all over the world.

The class (19:00-19:45) will be open for all Swingstreet students who don’t know the shim sham yet or would like to recap it.

The rest of the evening the Batjanzaal (Swingstreet east) will be open for practise. Meet the students in the other beginner levels or plan a practise with your own group 🙂

When: Friday June 15th 19:00 – 21:00
Location: Batjanstraat 68, 1094 RC Amsterdam

Blog post: Shoes!

One of the questions that we get a lot in classes is what shoes to wear during swing dancing.

There are no rules when it comes to buying swing dance shoes but it’s super important that your shoes are comfortable. Spend time to find the correct size because you don’t want your foot to move too much in the shoe but also want to avoid rubbing. Leather shoes breathe better and will typically last longer than synthetics, but are a bit more expensive. Shoes that are made for swing dancers usually have a leather or suede sole.

Flats or heels
Most dancers prefer to dance in shoes without heel or a low heel. We wouldn’t recommend dancing in shoes with a heel higher than 5 centimeters. If you feel super comfortable dancing in heels you could consider purchasing higher heels for the dance style Balboa, which keeps you dancing a bit more on the spot. If you consider buying heels make sure the shoe is closed or has good straps because you don’t want your heels to come off during the dance 🙂 For balance purposes I wouldn’t go for thin heels.

Finding the perfect sole for every dance floor is hard and quite personal. Some dancers prefer a bit more sticky shoes with a lot of grip but for other dancers it can’t get slippery enough. Wooden floors work best for most dancers but aren’t always available. Your options basically are: rubber, leather or suede soles.

For me a rubber sole works on a really slippery and even floor but it will sometimes hinder my ability to turn or slide. It can work for faster dancing where you can use the extra grip to push yourself forward, away from the floor. Rubber shoes usually don’t work for a bit more lazy dancing where you don’t lift your feet so much. Your body might want to turn while your foot stays in one position. This can never end well 😉 Rubber soles often start out sticky, but get a bit more slippery as they wear down.

I like to dance in shoes with leather soles on almost every wooden floor. Leather soles will be quite slippery but the wooden floor usually creates the right amount of grip without losing the ability to turn or slide. The more slippery it gets the more your muscles have to work. If you keep your feet underneath yourself this usually works nicely.

Suede shoes usually give you a bit more grip than leather but less than rubber. This is also the only sole that you really shouldn’t wear outside in the usual rainy weather in The Netherlands. Water will not have a positive effect on your suede soles 🙂 When you use a small steel brush (sold at Praxis/Gamma etc for approximately €2,-) you can brush your suede soles when they get too slippery. You can also buy street shoes and have a shoemaker glue a suede sole onto them (they usually recognise it if you call it ‘dance leather’).

There are new brands of shoes made for dancers, or even specifically swing dancers, popping up each month. Below you can first find a list of my current favourites and then a list of every other brand I have ever heard of 🙂

  • Slide & Swing
    Affordable €115 – €135 (sometimes on sale: €70), made by and for swing dancers, leather shoes and soles, store in Barcelona, shipping within Europe for approximately €25, friendly customer service and they often have a stand at Lindy Hop events.
  • Swivells
    Young french brand, leather shoes, colourful, up to size 41 or 42, boots and derbies, €159 – €179
  • TOMS
    Simple cotton sneakers. Make sure you pick a model without structure on the sole for all your spins and turns. They have a nice ‘one for one’ initiative: with every product you purchase, TOMS will help a person in need.
  • Keds
    Nice sneakers for dancers with narrow to normal width feet. Rubber sole that will get more slippery with use but also suitable to bring them to a shoemaker and add a suede sole.
  • P.mela Swingin’ shoes
    Pamela Gaizutyte creates a (very) limited amount of handmade leather shoes together with a cobbler in Vilnius, Lithuania. I think her idea is to create a new collection of shoes every season. Price: €220. Sold three collections so far: Swing Paradise limited edition, Be Clumsy/Be Brave and Autumn Romance). Pamela is an international swing dance teacher who tested the soles and boots with other swing dancing teachers and friends. I’m not sure what the status of her next collection is because the website is temporarily offline. You can follow her on Facebook or Instagram or sign up for her newsletter via / /

Other brands/shops: