How to Do Solo Salsa Dancing

Here is a motto to live by: "For every Way there's a Way of following that Way that's fun. This motto is the best way to learn to dance Salsa especially when we are talking about Salsa solo or the Salsa Shine. Salsa is a dance that is usually danced with a partner in a handhold style, but sometimes dancers may either choose to dance solo, or when dancing as a couple they may decide to separate and dance alone. This is called a solo salsa dance or a shine.

Why some people call it a shine, no one really knows. It might have come from when a non Latin tap dancer saw the move and called it after the “tap shine”. When a couple is dancing Salsa and they break away, both members can start showing off fancy footwork and body action, most of theses steps are supposed to be improvisational, but logically, especially in a show setting, they will be choreographed.

Salsa “suelta” or Salsa solo started when people wanted to dance as a group, or wanted to have a good time and didn’t want to worry about whether they had a partner or not. Solo Salsa dancing may also be the best way for true beginners to actually learn the steps that are involved in the dance.

Basic Salsa side steps:

Dancing the Salsa: Your steps are always going to go in a quick –quick –slow rhythm.

Start the salsa by stepping left with your left foot, then step in place with your right foot, and then close your left foot to your right foot.

Step right with your right foot, then step in place with your left foot, then close your right foot to your left foot.

Basic Salsa Forward Step

Place your left foot forward, then step in place with your right foot.

Close your left foot to your right foot.

Step back on your right foot then step in place on your left.

Close your right foot to your left foot.


  • When you dance salsa solo you follow the lead of a front dancer and dance to a line. Whatever step the lead starts those are the steps you should follow. So if the lead starts with a side salsa step, that’s what you follow and if he starts with a front salsa step then everyone follows him.

    An important thing to remember in Salsa is the rhythm and the quick-quick-slow rhythm of the steps. Once you have that down then you know how to do the salsa solo.