The first dance is a long standing tradition which is often the highlight of most wedding receptions.
More than just a way of defining your personality and style as a couple, it’s also one of the sweet moments you and your spouse will share and remember for years to come.
While it can be one of the most memorable parts of the wedding, the first dance is not something all couples look forward to.
Unless you’re as good as Ed Sheeran and his dancing partner in Thinking Out Loud, the idea of doing the first dance in front of a huge, eager audience can be nerve-wracking, especially for shy couples.
So if you want to keep things a bit low-key, here are a few simple ways to take out the pressure on you and still make your first dance special and fun!
Keep it simple
If you and your partner are worried about getting embarrassed – or worse, injured – because of your two left feet, choose a simple dance routine for your first dance.
But what does simple mean? It means staying away from complicated choreography. No lifts or other poses that may potentially cause accidents. Choose steps that you and your partner can execute smoothly.
Sticking to simple dance steps can also be a wise decision for couples who don’t have much time on their hands. These steps can be learned easily and with minimal effort.
A simple wedding dance can still be a special one, so don’t worry. A big grand dip is a great way to end the routine.
Sign up for lessons
If you’re not quite confident with your dance moves, this is a good option.
Some couples calm their nerves by signing up for dance lessons a few weeks in advance, working out some moves for their big day.
Choose a class that can accommodate your dancing skills. Practice is also important. The more familiar you are to the music and steps, the more confident you become.
Also, it doesn’t have to be a full-blown performance, dancing to a few minutes of the song is good enough.
You can even bring in a little help from your dance instructor or bridal party and ask them to share the floor during your first dance.
This can deflect a little bit of attention when everyone’s watching.
Dance to the song you want
Choose a song that has significant meaning to you as a couple.
Dance to “your song” so that when the music starts, a wave of calming and soothing emotion comes over you, melting all the worries away.
Choosing your own tune can also make your first dance a truly romantic and memorable moment. It makes you feel in love, as it should.
If you haven’t chosen a song yet, go for the one that is 1.) significant and 2.) is easy to dance to. Choose a song you can comfortably dance to.
Hire a live charismatic band to play your first dance
Hiring a live band is found to be the best wedding entertainment choice for shy couples. Why? Live bands don’t need to be told what to do; they instantly give you a show.
The members are fun and interactive, and are oftentimes responsible for the “wow” factor of the wedding.
If you don’t like the pressure brought on by the first dance, choosing a high-energy band with a charismatic and entertaining lead singer can diffuse the attention.
During your first dance, the guests will be watching both you and the performer on stage.
Who said you and your partner should be the only ones on the dance floor during your first dance?
One way to conquer the jitters is by inviting everyone – not only your dance instructor or your bridal party – to join you and your spouse during your first dance.
Ceilidh bands, traditional wedding bands in Edinburgh, Glasgow, and across Scotland, have become increasingly popular over the last few years.
What’s great about having them is that you can have all your guests dance along with you.
No one will focus on you, as everyone is busy watching his or her own feet. You don’t have to worry about the steps either, because the band has a “caller” who instructs people as they go
Your first dance need not be a nightmare. If anything, it can be a break from all the stress of wedding planning.
I hope these tips can help make your first dance truly memorable.
About the author: A regular blog contributor at premiere live music agency Music for Scotland, Tara writes about weddings, music, and other happy things. She is a bit of a foodie, and loves books, and music.
All images credited – Stuart Craig Photography