This is not an attempt to arm-twist you into ballroom dance classes. I’m just suggesting you weigh the costs and the benefits.
- It could make the whole day go better. You don’t need a big, splashy dance routine. But knowing what you’re going to do on the dance floor will make you more relaxed and confident going into your wedding day. Plus, if you plan your wedding dance correctly, you can match the routine to your ability, which will prevent you from taking on more than you can handle, further easing the tension.
- It provides social proofing. Can we talk man to man? Throughout history and across cultures, men have danced. The most macho characters in American film have danced, from Arnold Schwarzenegger (True Lies) to Brad Pitt (Mr. & Mrs. Smith) to Harrison Ford (Witness) to Antonio Banderas (The Mask of Zorro). Dancing, especially at your wedding, is the correct behavior for men—hence, it gives you social proof. You don’t have to like it but being able to ballroom dance and not show fear is alpha male behavior.
- It’ll make your fiancé happy. If your fiancé wants to do a credible wedding dance, whether it’s choreographed or just loosely put together, then your support and willing involvement will make her love you even more.
- It will be captured on video. Ouch. The YouTube era makes it open season on us klutzes. Let’s hope you don’t have friends who are disturbed or hold a grudge. But even if it’s never posted to the web, the videographer is going to nab some dance footage and it’ll end up on the official wedding video. Over the years, you’ll watch it again and again. Your children will watch it. Their children may watch it. Do you want to risk doing something you’ll regret?
- You’ll be expected to dance at events for the rest of your life. Learn an easy dance step or two now and it will not only get you through your wedding but through every other wedding reception, dinner dance, nightclub, concert, cruise, New Year’s Eve party and senior center social that you attend for the rest of your life.
Oh, one more thing: They say that how you dance is a metaphor for who you are. By learning to dance together, you may discover something new about the person you’re about to marry.
(For more on the first dance, check out “Surviving the Wedding Dance.”)
If you’re about to get married, what’s your biggest issue preparing for the first dance? If you’re already married, do you regret not taking it more seriously?