When we first started Dance-Virtual, we wanted to know what types of dance were most popular, and especially what dance styles people had difficulty learning. With this data we would tailor our Virtual Reality dance lesson app to help the most people get to the dance floor! Unfortunately we found very few statistics about styles of dance. So we ran our own survey on Reddit's dance-related subreddits. But first we needed to know: “Who are the dancers?”
Demographics are important because the let us know if there were any inconsistencies with our survey. Here are the answers for that section.
Let's quickly go through some inconsistencies. I'm using my experience as a teacher giving dance lessons in Austin, TX, to justify my points of view.
- Gender: This is obviously disproportionate, and a function of Reddit's user base, since: “young males are especially likely to use reddit” [source]. No surprises there, I guess.
- 16-18: I would have loved to start dancing at this age! However, this depends on the schedule and finances of mom and dad, reducing the number of young dancers
- 34+ : This is more an issue with Reddit users than with dancers.
- Ethnicity / Location: When I gave dance lessons in a US university a decade ago, we had a majority of non-white international students, because their cultures had already exposed them to dance. However our 76% white dancers is not much more diverse than 82% white Reddit user.
- Household income: I like how dancing is evenly distributed among all income levels!
It's not a perfect representation of the dancer community, but oh well, it will do.
Types of dance and our preferences as dancers
There are many different types of dance, some of them even have with their own dance etiquette on how to ask someone to dance. As part of our survey, we asked what types of dance people were interested in, grouping them by main types. These were: Ballroom, Latin, Swing, Country, Workout/Impact, Performance, Meditation movement and Club/Freestyle/Hip-hop. We'll mention the dance names in each group as reference.
Ballroom (Waltz, Tango, Rumba, Cha-cha, etc)
Latin (Salsa, Bachata, Kizomba, Zouk, Merengue, etc)
Swing (East Coast Swing, West Coast Swing, Lindy Hop, etc)
Country Dancing (Two Step, Country Polka, Line Dance, Square Dance, etc)
Workout/Impact (Aerobics, Break-Dancing, Zumba, Capoeira)
Performance Dancing (Choreography, Modern, Ballet, Theater, Flashmob, Bollywood)
Meditation movement (Tai chi, Yoga)
Club /Freestyle/ Hip-hop
And the winner is…
- Swing (72.9%)
- Latin (69.8%)
- Ballroom (65.9%)
- Club (58.1%)
- Meditation (42.6%)
- Performance (38%)
- Workout (26.4%)
- Country (23.3%)
Swing is the most popular dance according to our survey! Surprised? I was. However, I got a nice insight into the online swing community from one of the survey taker's rather colorful
comment complaint about the survey: “This is a nerdy subreddit of a stereotypically nerdy community, you're going to get a very skewed response.” I did notice a huge bump in responses when I posted the survey on the swing subreddit, and their online community is strong, but the survey was anonymous so I can't verify where the responses came from.
Just remember that this applies to dancers active or dedicated enough to subscribe to dance-related forums and internet hubs, and very likely to take classes to improve themselves. If you don't believe the swing hype, Latin dancing also looks very popular. From the social dances and dance lessons I see scheduled around major cities, in clubs and dance studios, I'd be inclined to give the crown to Latin dancing instead. And an honorable mention to Club dancing for the sheer numbers of non-dedicated-dancers doing it and enjoying it!
It can take a long time to learn all the dances you're interested in! If you're looking for an immersive app that will help you enjoy the popular types of dance out there at home and anytime, subscribe to our newsletter to get updates on our Dance-Virtual app progress to learn to dance with virtual reality!
What do you think? Let us know what your favorite dance is in the comments!