Whether you are a dancer looking for a challenge or a fan taking their love of K-pop to another level, dancing in this genre is a lot of fun to learn. With determination and lots of practice, you can master the movements of your favorite song just like a real K-pop idol!
Part 1 of 4: Choose a song
Step 1. Pick a girl group song for a lively, playful dance
Each K-pop girl group has a unique style, with songs ranging from sweet to empowering. The dances of these groups are usually energetic, flirtatious, daring and a lot of fun. Pick a band that you really like and want to emulate, but remember to keep your skill level in mind! You can progress to more challenging dances from groups like Girls' Generation and Black Pink, but if you're a beginner, check out the following girl groups:
Step 2. Pick a song from a boy group if you want a more explosive style
Boy group dance styles are often louder and more powerful than girl groups, with songs that mix elements of rap in the energetic style of K-pop. Pick a group of guys if you want a more aggressive dance and be ready to do big, daring moves and lots of jumps! If you are a beginner and looking for easy-to-learn movements, look at the following groups:
- BIG BANG
Step 3. Pick a song that you love so that you will be excited to be able to dance to it
It is essential that you choose a song that makes you want to get up and dance! You'll have a lot of fun learning the dance, and the excitement and energy will make you even more determined when learning the moves, even when they get difficult.
Remember that you don't have to pick a song from a girl group if you are a girl or a boy group if you are a boy. Choose the song and style that you like the most
Step 4. Watch the music video or dance practice video (if there is one)
This way you can see if you will be able to do it. Before making your final decision on the song, watch a music video or a choreographed live version of the dance to get an idea of the style and its difficulty. Make sure it is a dance that you are capable of doing on the physical plane! If you are a beginning dancer and this choreography has a lot of floor work or advanced transitions, find something simpler to start with.
Don't worry, you won't learn the dance from this video, the cutting and editing would make it very difficult! You will watch it just to get an idea of the moves and the dance style
Step 5. Have a list of the dances that you want to learn a lot
If there is one that you want to learn a lot and it is very difficult for you at the moment, do not be discouraged! Write down the songs you want to learn and use them as motivation to start learning other simpler dances. As you improve and have more experience, you will be able to face the most difficult dances on the list.
Part 2 of 4: Finding a Video Tutorial
Step 1. Search the internet for a mirrored video tutorial
Video tutorials are the easiest way to learn and there are many on the internet. Look for the song name followed by "mirrored version" or "dance tutorial." Regardless of the video you choose, make sure the dancers have their backs to the camera like a dance teacher or that it is mirrored, that is, they have turned it horizontally.
- If you use a video that is not mirrored, you will learn the dance backwards. For example, if the dancer raises his right arm, it will appear to you that he raised his left. You will actually be doing the opposite movements!
- Choosing a mirrored video or one where the dancers have their backs to the camera will allow you to follow each movement exactly as it appears on screen.
Step 2. Follow the movements of the main dancer
Some K-pop groups have a lot of members and it can be overwhelming trying to watch them all at once. Rather, pick one of the lead dancers and follow him the entire time.
The lead dancers are usually near the center where the camera can best see them and do most of the choreography, rather than freestyle
Step 3. Watch the video at least five times
Focus on the lead dancer. Sit back, relax, and watch the complete choreography a few times to get a feel for the choreography and timing. Focus well on the dancer you are going to follow. If you can, watch the video on a computer or TV screen instead of the phone so you can see all the movements and small details.
In K-pop dance, precision is key, so the clearer you can see the moves, the better
Step 4. Get into a large room in your house to start practicing
The best place to learn dance is a large, quiet room in the house - it could even be your own room! If you don't have one that is the size you need at home, you can practice in a room at the gym, in the hallways of your school, or even in a dance studio. All you need is a little space to move around and access to the Internet.
Step 5. Film yourself dancing, if you don't have a mirror
Many people like to dance in front of the mirror in order to improve and have a global vision of the dance, but it is definitely not necessary. If you don't have a large mirror that you can practice standing in front with, set up a camera to film yourself and see what you have to work on.
You can also practice dancing without a mirror or a camera. Focus on how the movements feel and what the dancers look like in the video, and do your best to copy them as best you can
Part 3 of 4: Dance following the tutorial
Step 1. Divide the dance into small, manageable sections
The best way to learn this complicated choreography is to tackle it little by little. It's easier to separate the dance based on the movements of the song, so that you have musical indicators that divide each segment. Most likely, the sections will be the following:
- the introduction
- the verses
- the pre-chorus
- the chorus
Step 2. Practice each movement of the intro with the video at half speed
If you see it on YouTube, click the Settings button in the right corner of the video, click Speed and choose 0, 5. Start the video at the beginning and pause it every time you see the dancer do a new movement. Pause it and play it again, imitating the dancer slowly.
If you see him watching a tutorial on a site other than YouTube, search the internet to watch the video at a slower speed
Step 3. Learn the introduction step by step, focusing on the arms and then the legs
Pause it and replay each movement until you know it. If it helps, you can first focus on how the arms move in a particular movement and add the legs to it later. When you've learned it, replay the video from the beginning and do all the movements at the same time, then move on to the next part.
- Replaying from the beginning will be very frustrating if you want to learn new moves right away, but it will help with timing and making transitions nice and smooth.
- You may want to move from one move to another as quickly as possible, but this will only frustrate you. Be patient and remember that the only way to get to the level of a K-pop star is with lots of practice!
Step 4. Accelerate the introduction when you know it at half speed
When you get to the last move in the intro, go through them all one more time at half speed. Then accelerate it to a speed of 0.75 (three-quarters of the original speed). Don't worry about getting each movement to perfection at this point, just focus on getting more or less of it and familiarizing yourself with the feel and flow of each movement.
Step 5. Repeat the process with the next part of the video
Now that you know the introduction, advance the video to the first verse. Use the same process to learn each new move, pausing and replaying at half speed until you know them all.
Step 6. Practice from scratch each time you learn a new part
When you've learned the first verse, flip the video back to the beginning and play it at three-quarters normal speed. Go through all the moves you know, and again focus more on fluidity and general placement than total precision.
Step 7. Try to learn one to two parts of the dance a day
Don't get overwhelmed! K-pop dances are quite complicated, so go slowly and strive to learn only a couple of parts a day. Advance the song in order and do your best not to rest any day, as it is easy to forget the steps when you miss practice.
Before starting a new section the next day, review all the parts you have learned so far to keep them fresh
Part 4 of 4: Practice the dance
Step 1. Play the video at normal speed when you have learned all the parts
When you can do the full dance with the video at three-quarters speed, slowly build it up to normal speed. Feel the difference when you start to go faster and make the necessary modifications.
Step 2. Practice the dance without the video when you have learned everything
Flip your computer or go across the room, then play the music and dance to the best of your ability without looking. It's okay if you don't remember anything! Go back and watch the video later to see what you can improve, then keep trying until you have it complete.
Have fun with it! Regardless of whether the dance is powerful, happy, daring or sensual, adopt the attitude and show it in your face and movements. Dances are so much more fun to watch and perform if you are focused on having a good time
Step 3. Look and focus on areas that need improvement
You may have to practice a particular section of the dance or work on a general skill, such as being more precise or getting faster. It may take up to a week or more for you to dance to perfection, so be patient with yourself! Focus on getting a little better each day.
Step 4. Do the full dance at least once every few days to keep it fresh
Congratulations, you've learned a complete K-pop dance! If you want it to stay with you, don't forget to practice it every few days. Also, feel free to show off your moves with your friends every time you listen to the song!
- If physically you cannot practice the movements all the time, try to review them in your mind every few days. Listen to the song and imagine yourself achieving each step perfectly.
- If you want to perform in a show or video, put together a cool outfit that allows you to move but goes with the song, like sneakers and shorts or skinny jeans and a sparkly T-shirt.
Step 5. Be patient with yourself and don't give up
It's totally normal to get frustrated, K-pop dances are hard and fast! If you are patient with yourself and commit to practicing the movements as much as necessary, you will learn them. Remember that the time and effort will pay off in the end.