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ISTD Syllabus 

Lists of dance steps in the 10 dances of 'International Style' Ballroom & Latin American
The dances

Cha Cha Cha, Samba, Rumba, Paso Doble, Jive, Waltz, Foxtrot, Quickstep, Tango, Viennese Waltz, Rhythm (Social) Foxtrot 


A syllabus represents a list of the common dance figures and actions of each dance, that are internationally agreed through examination boards and teacher associations, written down in all details in technique books and are sorted in levels from Pre-Bronze to Gold level. It is the basis of qualified teaching of dance, of medal tests, judging at dance competitions and of professional qualifications. They provide a structured approach to progress, while increasing dance knowledge, technique and artistic quality.

The syllabus levels are accumulative, they are building up on each other and rely on the knowledge of technique of the lower levels. Bronze includes Pre-Bronze figures, Silver includes Pre-Bronze and Bronze figures, Gold includes Pre-Bronze, Bronze and Silver.

The class levels of our 3-6 Weeks Courses and of the Wednesday Weekly Drop-In

In our dance studio the syllabuses of the following 10 dances are reflected in these class/ course levels and enable a structured progress of our students. They even could help to prepare for medal tests, together with Private lessons.

  • Beginners 1

(Beginners variations, Basic Steps, 'Social Dance' medal routines)

  • Beginners 2

(Basic Steps, Pre-Bronze, parts of Social dance and  Pre-Bronze medal routines will be taught)

  • Improvers

(Pre-Bronze and Bronze figures, Bronze medal routines will be taught)

  • Intermediate

(Bronze and Silver figures, parts of Silver medal test routines will be taught)

  • Advanced

(Gold and Goldstar figures)


This the syllabus of our examination board the prestigious ISTD (Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing), of the 10 dances of Modern Ballroom and Latin American dances (including Jive), all International Style, plus Rhythm Foxtrot. 

Questions? Contact us or your teacher.


1. Feather Step
2. Three Step
3. Natural Turn
4. Reverse Turn (incorporating Feather Finish)
5. Closed Impetus and Feather Finish

6. Natural Weave
7. Change of Direction
8. Basic Weave


9. Closed Telemark
10. Open Telemark and Feather Ending
11. Top Spin
12. Hover Feather
13. Hover Telemark
14. Natural Telemark
15. Hover Cross
16. Open Telemark, Natural Turn, Outside Swivel, Feather Ending
17. Open Impetus
18. Weave from PP
19. Reverse Wave


20. Natural Twist Turn
21. Curved Feather to Back Feather
22. Natural Zig-Zag from PP
23. Fallaway Reverse and Slip Pivot
24. Natural Hover Telemark
25. Bounce Fallaway with Weave Ending

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Beginner variations (not named in the ISTD syllabus)

Zig Zag, Closed Changes along Line of Dance with Natural and Reverse Turns (Box Steps with 1/4 Turns right or left)

1. Closed Changes
2. Natural Turn
3. Reverse Turn
4. Natural Spin Turn
5. Whisk
6. Chassé from PP


7. Closed Impetus
8. Hesitation Change
9. Outside Change
10. Reverse Corté
11. Back Whisk
12. Basic Weave
13. Double Reverse Spin
14. Reverse Pivot
15. Back Lock
16. Progressive Chassé to R


17. Weave from PP
18. Closed Telemark
19. Open Telemark and Cross Hesitation
20. Open Telemark and Wing
21. Open Impetus and Cross Hesitation
22. Open Impetus and Wing
23. Outside Spin
24. Turning Lock


25. Left Whisk
26. Contra Check
27. Closed Wing
28. Turning Lock to R
29. Fallaway Reverse and Slip Pivot
30. Hover Corté


1. Quarter Turn to R
2. Natural Turn
3. Natural Turn with Hesitation
4. Natural Pivot Turn
5. Natural Spin Turn
6. Progressive Chassé
7. Chassé Reverse Turn
8. Forward Lock

9. Closed Impetus
10. Backward Lock
11. Reverse Pivot
12. Progressive Chassé to R
13. Tipple Chassé to R
14. Running Finish
15. Natural Turn and Back Lock
16. Double Reverse Spin


17. Quick Open Reverse
18. Fishtail
19. Running Right Turn
20. Four Quick Run
21. V6
22. Closed Telemark


23. Cross Swivel
24. Six Quick Run
25. Rumba Cross
26. Tipsy to R or L
27. Hover Corté


Cha Cha Cha

1. Basic Movements (Closed, Open and In Place)
2. New York (To Left or Right Side Position)
3. Spot Turns to Left or Right (Including Switch Turns and Underarm Turns)
4. Shoulder to Shoulder (Left Side and Right Side)
5. Hand to Hand (to Right and Left Side Position)
6. Three Cha Cha Chas (Forward and Back)
7. Side Steps (To Left and Right)
8. There and Back
9. Time Steps
10. Fan
11. Alemana
12. Hockey Stick
13. Natural Top
14. Natural Opening Out Movement
15. Closed Hip Twist
16. Open Hip Twist
17. Reverse Top
18. Opening Out from Reverse Top
19. Aida
20. Spiral turns (Spiral, Curl and Rope Spinning)
21. Cross Basic
22. Cuban Breaks (including Split Cuban Breaks)
23. Chase
24. Advanced Hip Twist
25. Hip Twist Spiral
26. Turkish Towel
27. Sweetheart
28. Follow My Leader
29. Foot Changes


1. Basic Movements (Closed, Open, In Place and Alternative)
2. Cucarachas
3. New York (To Left or Right Side Position)
4. Spot Turns to Left or Right (Including Switch and Underarm Turns)
5. Shoulder to Shoulder (To Left and Right Side Position)
6. Hand to Hand (To Right and Left Side Position)
7. Progressive Walks Forward or Back
8. Side Steps (To Left or Right)
9. Cuban Rocks
10. Fan
11. Alemana
12. Hockey Stick
13. Natural Top
14. Opening Out to Right and Left
15. Natural Opening Out Movement
16. Closed Hip Twist
17. Open Hip Twist
18. Reverse Top
19. Opening Out from Reverse Top
20. Aida
21. Spiral Turns (Spiral, Curl and Rope Spinning)
22. Sliding Doors
23. Fencing
24. Three Threes
25. Three Alemanas
26. Hip Twists (Advanced, Continuous and Circular)


1. Basic Movements (Natural, Reverse, Side and Progressive)36
2. Whisks (also with Lady’s Underarm Turn)
3. Samba Walks (Promenade, Side and Stationary)
4. Rhythm Bounce
5. Volta Movements
6. Travelling Bota Fogos Forward
7. Criss Cross Bota Fogos (Shadow Botafogos)
8. Travelling Bota Fogos Back
9. Bota Fogos to Promenade Position and Counter Promenade Position
10. Criss Cross Volta
11. Solo Spot Voltas
12. Foot Changes
13. Shadow Travelling Volta
14. Reverse Turn
15. Corta Jaca
16. Closed Rocks
17. Open Rocks
18. Back Rocks
19. Plait
20. Rolling off the Arm
21. Argentine Crosses
22. Maypole
23. Shadow Circular Volta
24. Contra Bota Fogos
25. Roundabout
26. Natural Roll
27. Reverse Roll
28. Promenade and Counter Promenade Runs
29. Three Step Turn
30. Samba Locks
31. Cruzados Walks and Locks

Paso Doble

1. Sur Place
2. Basic Movement
3. Chasses to Right or Left (including Elevations)
4. Drag
5. Deplacement (also Attack)
6. Promenade Link (also Promenade Close)
7. Promenade
8. Ecart (Fallaway Whisk)
9. Separation
10. Separation with Lady’s Caping Walks
11. Fallaway Ending to Separation
12. Huit
13. Sixteen
14. Promenade and Counter Promenade37
15. Grand Circle
16. Open Telemark
17. La Passe
18. Banderillas
19. Twist Turn
20. Fallaway Reverse Turn
21. Coup de Pique
22. Left Foot Variation
23. Spanish Lines
24. Flamenco Taps
25. Syncopated Separation
26. Travelling Spins from Promenade Position
27. Travelling Spins from Counter Promenade Position
28. Fregolina (also Farol)
29. Twists
30. Chasse Cape (including Outside Turn)


1. Basic in Place
2. Fallaway Rock
3. Fallaway Throwaway
4. Link
5. Change of Places Right to Left
6. Change of Places Left to Right
7. Change of Hands behind the Back
8. Hip Bump (Left Shoulder Shove)
9. American Spin
10. Walks
11. Stop and Go
12. Mooch
13. Whip
14. Whip Throwaway
15. Reverse Whip
16. Windmill
17. Spanish Arms
18. Rolling off the Arm
19. Simple Spin
20. Miami Special
21. Curly Whip
22. Shoulder Spin
23. Toe Heel Swivels
24. Chugging
25. Chicken Walks
26. Catapult
27. Stalking Walks, Flicks and Break

Viennese Waltz


First figures/variations outside of ISTD syllabus

side pendulum, forward-backward Pendulum


1. Natural Turn
2. Reverse Turn
3. Closed Changes Forward


4. Closed Changes Backward


5. Reverse Fleckerl
6. Natural Fleckerl
7. Contra Check

Vienn Waltz

1. Walk
2. Progressive Side Step
3. Progressive Link
4. Closed Promenade
5. Rock Turn
6. Open Reverse Turn, Partner Outside
7. Back Corté


8. Open Reverse Turn, Partner in Line
9. Progressive Side Step Reverse Turn
10. Open Promenade
11. LF and RF Rocks
12. Natural Twist Turn
13. Natural Promenade Turn
Standard Figures


14. Promenade Link
15. Four Step
16. Back Open Promenade
17. Outside Swivels
18. Fallaway Promenade
19. Four Step Change
20. Brush Tap


21. Fallaway Four Step
22. Oversway
23. Basic Reverse Turn
24. The Chase
25. Fallaway Reverse and Slip Pivot
26. Five Step

27. Contra Check


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