How To “Dad Dance” Properly

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“Hold up, you’re going to teach me how to dad dance? But you’re a she? You won’t ever be a dad–how?” Stop your line of inquiry, dear reader, and just know that I am an authority on this subject. I come from a long line of dad dancers, all of whom I admire, and they are great examples of this often overlooked art form. If my family had a crest, it would be of a dad in a Hawaiian shirt, pleated khakis, and white Reeboks killing it to an Eric Carmen song with the words “Are we human or are we dancer?” inscribed in Latin.

Despite years of ballet lessons, when I see a 12-by-12 laminate roll-out floor at a wedding, I lose all sense of rhythm and begin to move my body in a tornado of poor coordination. The only adequate descriptor of my movements is “inflatable blow-up person in front of a used car dealership.” My fearlessness to move my body about, even soberly, has recently made me the envy of weddings. I haven’t been complimented directly, per se, but I have heard people say, “I now understand why she’s single.” Let me tell you, I hear you loud and clear. You even recognize that my amazing moves often intimidate most eligible bachelors.

In the past few wedding weekends, I have had the opportunity to take my dad dancing to the next level and I want to help guide those of you who feel you need a more solid dancing foundation. Follow these simple (dance) steps to upgrade your moves.

Interpret The Lyrics As Literally As Possible

If Hootie is singing out “Time” and you aren’t pointing at your watch, then just leave the dance floor immediately. You are not worthy of the pursuit of dad moves.

Never Move Your Arms And Legs At The Same Time

You aren’t coordinated enough for that. Macarena arms or Shakira hips, but never both at the same time. If your arms are “stirring the cauldron” then your legs should be perfectly still.

Sing Out The Chorus At The Wrong Time

Nothing shows that you are out of touch faster than singing out the lyrics loudly, and at the wrong time. If you have enough time to focus on the lyrics, then you aren’t focusing enough on your dancing.

ABP (Always Be Pointing)

This is a staple move because of its versatility. You can power point. You can do alternating finger guns. You can even do a little “Saturday Night Fever.” This should be your go-to.

Stadium Moves

Do the wave by yourself. No one around you will catch the crest, so you can just keep waving your arms indefinitely.

Support Your Back

You totally threw out your back pretending to be Elaine Benes. Keep that one arm bent at your side for some added lumbar support.

Dance To Popular Dances Incorrectly

Cupid Shuffle during The Wobble. Wobble during the Harlem Shake. Don’t do any dance correctly, or to the correct song. This will distract from the fact that you are at a wedding in 2014 and the DJ is still playing the Harlem Shake.

Apologize To No One

Who are we? DAD DANCERS. What do we want? TO DAD DANCE. Why do we want it? Because dancing, even if it is terrible, is about a hundred times more fun than sitting at some rented table hoping that the cute guy who hasn’t moved more than two feet from the bar comes over to say hello.

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