Beginners Salsa Corner

Why should you choose Latinsisimo beginners salsa course?

Latinissimo director and senior instructor Giancarlo has been teaching beginners to dance since 2003. Over time he has developed a curriculum and syllabus to make the learning process of salsa dancing effective, easy to follow and understand and most importantly, fun! In 2018 Giancarlo revamped and expanded the salsa dance curriculum creating a new and more applicable structure.

The beginner curriculum consists of primarily understanding the basics steps, how they relate to eachother and how we can utilize them to create variations. Everything you do in salsa dancing, are simple variations of the basics. Solidifying the basics and thoroughly understnad them, makes the step to higher levels a breeze. Partner dance fundamentals are also part of the curriculum.

NOTE! {Currently not available} All Salsa beginners course participants recieve Latinssimo's Beginner Salsa instuctional videos to assist you with your dancing throughout the course!

8 Reasons to join our 8wk Salsa Beginners

  1. No partner necessary!
  2. Salsa is a great way to meet new people and make new friends.
  3. Our instructors are friendly, approachable and very knowledgeable.
  4. We have professional instructors with over 18 years of international teaching experience.
  5. Our instructors are recognized for excellent teaching techniques and clear communication skills.
  6. Our current Salsa curriculum and syllabus is developed by World Salsa Champion Giancarlo.
  7. We offer a structured and progressive step-by-step curriculum for all our courses.
  8. At Latinissimo we have lots of fun in class!

* Applies only when registering for Salsa Beginners L1 course {Currently not available}. Not applicable to casual attendees or other courses. Full range of downloadable videos can be purchased through our online store.

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2021 Beginners Salsa Timetable
Next course Where Cost Register online

Salsa Beginners (L1)
Tue 15 Jun @ 6:30pm

Empire Dance Studios
2 Bond St, Grey Lynn
8-wk course
Pre-register $140
OR $165 cash @ door
Salsa Level 2
Tue 15 Jun @ 7:30pm
Empire Dance Studios
2 Bond St, Grey Lynn
8-wk course
Pre-register $140
OR $165 cash @ door
Salsa Beginners (L1)
Thu 15 Jul @ 8:30pm
Empire Dance Studios
2 Bond St, Grey Lynn
8-wk course
Pre-register $140
OR $165 cash @ door

Wanna try a class OR
attend casually? No problem!
Just come along anytime!

Empire Dance Studios
2 Bond St, Grey Lynn
Try a class OR attend casually
$25/pp cash only please


Everyone was once a Beginner!

No matter what you see or how you feel about your own skills - EVERYONE was once a beginner!

I still to this day remember clear as day when I first started dancing salsa, nothing made sense! I couldn't for the sake of me hear the 1, 2, 3...! "-Don't you hear the one(1)?", my instructor used to say... "-What one(1)??!!"... She was refering to count 1 in the music - the beginning of a measure. This would indicate when I needed to land my first step. I felt like I didn't have a musical bone in me! I was totally out of my comfort zone! Since I am a Latino, I was expected to pick this up instantly and be fantastic!

However, I learnt very quickly that learning to dance salsa technically correct or any other dancing for that matter is not something you are born with no matter what background you have or where you were born. It is all about studying, learning and repeating. Yes, it is true that some will pick up faster. However, the one who studies eventually excels!

This is exactly what I did,  I "studied" and did my "homework", then it was all about repetition over and over again! I used to think, how come everybody else is learning so fast? Am I the only one not getting it? Luckily, I realized I wasn't the only one. However, with time, slowly but surely things started to make sense and fall in place. I even remember the night when suddenly my dancing felt very different - I started to "get it"!

Sometimes you see 'hot shots' on the dance floor dancing amazing, well they should to be dancing that well since they spend most of their time practicing/dancing - while others are at work earning a living! Keep in mind that these dancers probably earn a living from dancing. So don't compare yourself to them.

You will learn at your own pace no matter what, just like I did. The more you worry about it the slower you will find you progress, trust me! Try to just relax and allow yourself to not know anything for a while; it won't be too long before that fact changes rapidly. Enjoy the process of learning and don't beat yourself up - be kind to yourself and you'll be pleasantly surprised! Keep your dancing simple and basic initially to build up your confidence. Then at a later stage once you can do all your basic moves (and backwards) in various different orders, you can start playing and experimenting with new more challenging moves and styling as you progress! The single most important advice for all dancers, is to smile and have fun when you dance!

You are allowed to make mistakes, this is how you will learn. Ask questions about everything, this is how you will understand why it is done in one way and not the other.

Measure your success only by comparison to yourself and appreciate how far you've come - everyone else around you is far too worried that you will laugh at them to risk a sideways glance, so.... just relax.

Keep in mind that social salsa dancing is for fun and making friends. If you don't get it as quickly as you anticipated, nothing tragic will happen, the class will still be there next week! Its only a matter of time - so take your time and go step-by-step!

Ask for help if you're struggling with anything; don't be afraid to ask, no matter how silly you think it is. As teachers, we love getting questions from beginners because we know that it will "light up" a bulb and things will eventually fall in place. Everything will make sence, slowly, but surely! Remember, there is a good chance you are not the only person wondering about something, and the answer to your question will probably be helpful to several people in your class! Others will probably thank you for asking a question. If you belive you are seriously falling behind in class, then perhaps consider a private lesson.

Beginners FAQ

Q: How does the 8wk Beginners Salsa course work?

A: At this level you will learn all the elements and fundamentals of salsa on1 OR on2, depening on which course you choose. These courses are aimed for students who have little or no experience in salsa. We start from the very beginning with all the salsa basics, rhythm & timing. We will then continue with the fundamentals of partner dancing, basic lead and following techniques, turns and how to put it all together into basic figures and variations.

Throughout the courses, your goal will be to learn the basic terminology, understanding of the 7 fundamental basic salsa steps and be able to lead (if you are the leader) OR be able to follow (if you are the follower) the basic figures and variations taught in the course, in which ever order you want. The basics taught in this fundamental course are absolutely crucial as they are the base to everything we do in the higher levels. We feel these courses are the most important salsa course of them all. It is in these courses where we lay the foundation to your salsa dancing.

Q: Can I do the classes casually (drop-in)?

A: Yes, absolutely. There is no obligation to commit to a course. You may choose to do the classes on casual basis. Casual classes are $25. Doing a course works out to $17.50/class.

Q: Where can I park?

A: There is street parking available on New North Road, Bond Street and side-streets.

Q: Do I need a partner?

A: No partners are required! We do everything we can to have as even ratio balance as possible in our courses. Unfortunately casual classes are unpredictable. However, we rotate partners in class regularly to ensure eveybody get a chance to learn and try. Trust me you won't be alone.

Q: What do I wear?

A: Classes: We recommend anything from casual attire to gym or dance wear. Comfortable clothes that don't restrict movement. Most people come straight from work and are in their work clothes, others wear jeans or simply casual clothes.

Social dancing: Comfort is key! Wear clothes that will allow full range of movement and that you don't have to stop and adjust every 30 seconds! Clubs are usually smart casual. Girls, if you are wearing something sleveless, you will want to wear something with shoulder straps to avoid accidents! "Tube" like tops can become a problem!

Q: What kind of shoes are best?

no jandals 175px optGuys: Sneakers are ok for 1st or 2nd class, but not ideal. From there on, try wear smooth soles, preferably suede or leather. Avoid rubber soles that will grip the floor. Best to wear enclosed shoes to protect your feet on the dance floor or you might regret it when a 3 inch heel comes your way!

Ladies: Please no jandals or sandles. These will just make it very difficult for you to dance in. Runners are ok for 1st or 2nd class, but not ideal. Its really important ladies to have a smooth sole, preferably suede. Don't wear anything that will grip the floor. Make sure it is snug on your feet and will keep your heel and ankle in place. Keep in mind that you will be turning, therefore your feet need to have stability and feel secure. This will prevent twists and/or sprains.

Comfort is important ladies, if they are not comfortable to walk around in, they are not going to be comfy dancing in! If you wish to wear flat shoes, jazz shoes or dance sneakers is recommended.

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Proper or "real" dance shoes make a huge difference if you dance on regular basis. Have a look at for more information or ask us at your next class.

Q: What music can I practice with?

A: Practicing to the correct music is going to be very important and could make a big difference in your understanding and development for salsa dancing as there are many different styles and flavours of Salsa music out there.

Below we have selected a few songs that are appropriate for beginners who are starting out with Salsa dancing. The song have a good tempo, strong beat and clear instruments which makes it easy to pick up the timing.

Appropriate music for beginners to practise

  1. Ray Barreto: Acid
  2. Crystal Sierra: Playa no more
  3. Angeles y Bob Marley: No Woman No Cry (salsa version)
  4. Hector y Tito con Victor Manuel: Ay Amor (salsa version)
  5. Los Nemus: Cuera, Maraca y Bongo
  6. Lenny Kravitz: Thinking of you (salsa version)
  7. DLG: No morira
  8. Lionel Richie:  Hello (salsa version)
  9. Frankie Ruiz: Cosas Nativas
  10. Grupo Latin Vibe: La Llave
  11. Luis Enrique: Yo no se mañana
  12. Orquesta La Palabra: Lady


About Latinissimo

Latinissimo was first founded in Melbourne, Australia in 2003 specializing in street Latin dance. 2005 Latinissimo relocated to Auckland, New Zealand.

Directed by World Salsa Champion Giancarlo, Latinissimo as a school has performed, taught and competed across 4 continents, are multiple international and national champions and have produced two World Amateur Salsa Champions.

  • Latinissimo Dance New Zealand
  • 0210 29 88 164
  • Email us HERE
  • Empire Dance Studios, 2 Bond St, Auckland

Auckland Grey Lynn

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Salsa L2 Tuesday 15 Jun @ 7:30pm
Bachata L2 Thursday 17 Jun @ 7:30pm
Bachata Shines Wednesday 23 Jun @ 7:30pm
Mambo Shines Monday 05 Jul @ 7:30pm
Bachata L1 Monday 12 Jul @ 6:30pm
Salsa L1 Thursday 15 Jul @ 8:30pm