Wife Learns Quicker-I am slow


Active Member
Yes and yes

I agree with what everybody else has said. My background: played three instruments in school and college so I understand time signatures, tempo, etc. Free style "danced" in HS and college (this was the 70s - stand apart and fake a seizure). Did the occasional "penguin" slow dance at weddings. Learned some country and western from some Oklahoma boys in the early 80s.

Started ballroom with my (now) ex-significant other in January 07. My learning curve was definitely slower than hers, but she only really wanted to do the swing, which is still my weakest dance. She'd get ticked at me.

As written, the guy does have to concentrate on footwork, the music and the lead. My instructor told the women in an early group class to cut the men some slack because odds were we couldn't do all three at once if we were just beginning. The music I had down (see above) but I was concentrating on steps and my lead WAS weak.

As of today, I am tolerable (I think) in most dances (but swing) but it still takes me about two lessons to learn a step well while I see a number of women at my level picking it up pretty well in one. For example, we're doing a rumba step with three snap turns, a six step walk-around, half a box, three steps back and turn the lady back into close position. That would have killed me 6 months ago.

Conversely, I now recognize an inexperienced follow really fast. (Yeah, I know it's MY job to make her look good...)

So don't give up or get down on yourself. Take those lessons and dance with other people as well.
This is normal and in itself does not mean the lady is a better dancer. It just means the teach is and should be better at leading a move, particularily something you are learning. Key is how well your wife dances with you, after you have time to work on the move and the technique it requires.


Well-Known Member
Leaders generally have a much slower learning curve at first, because they need to learn the equivalent of everything the follower does--steps, timing, footwork, etc.--PLUS how to lead and how to dance one step while thinking ahead to the next step.
definitely. don't be hard on yourself!

Dont give up.

You should continue to take classes with your wife and continue learning. Since she is able to catch on faster thats a good thing. That way one of you has it while the other one keeps learning. If neither of you had it down, then that would be a disaster.

Your wife can get extra training with an instructor but I don't think she should let you give up. Stick it out, you'll catch up eventually and then you'll have something to look back to, memories :)


Active Member
My wife learns much quicker than I do
Normal. Standard. Ain't she great?!

My recommendation to married couples is for the guy to take two lessons for every lesson the lady takes until the imbalance is overcome.

especially when she dances with the instructor. Her dance with the instructor compared to her dance with me is night and day.
Good you're impressed by her - makes the world go round.

Good goal is to get as good/better than the instructor. He's just ahead of you, not an absolute he has it and you don't.

Everyone got to where they are from where they started . . .

Because she really likes and enjoys dancing and wants to go on to many more different dances
This will be the key to the whole thing. This concept will make your efforts seem like night and day.

For me, it was attitude. When I started, I had a bad attitude - I was busy, it was time for something else, everyone around me looked good, I had two really good left feet, . . .

When I applied myself with vigor . . . then I found myself on the other side of the fence.
You need to relax and enjoy it.
Take deep breaths and know that you are a great dancer- just as much as your wife is. Listen to some Abraham Hicks on youtube and then really feel that you are it!

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