Steps for the Hands Up Dance

by Michael Monet

Line dancing is a style of dance that brings a whole room together. The Hands Up dance was choreographed by Craig Bennett in 2009 and can still be seen performed at country clubs everywhere. This dance is considered intermediate in difficulty, with a total of 32 counts repeated throughout a country song until the song ends.

First 8 Counts

Start the Hands Up dance counting "1-2, 3-and-4-and, 5-and-6, 7-and-8." Place a number count wherever there's a movement and take a breath between counts and movements wherever there's a comma. On "1-2" walk forward with your right foot, then your left foot. On count "3-and-4-and" rock forward onto your right foot, recover onto your left, rock your right foot to the right side, and recover to the left foot. On "5-and-6" step your right foot behind the left, step left out slightly, then close your right and left feet together. On "7-and-8" step left behind right while making a quarter turn to the left. Recover by stepping forward right, then step forward with the left. These steps require you to stay light on your feet. Whenever an instructor says, "Recover," you should only transfer your weight to the appropriate foot for a moment and fall back onto the opposite foot.

Second 8 Counts

The next steps for the Hands Up dance count "1-2, and-3-and-4-and, 5-6, 7-and-8." On "1-2" step forward with your right foot and make a half-turn pivot to your left side, changing directions. On "and-3-and-4-and" bump your left hip forward, bump your right hip back, bump your right hip forward, bump your left hip back, bump your left hip forward and simultaneously make a quarter turn to the right. On "5-6" rock your right foot to the right side and recover onto your left. On "7-and-8" rock right behind the left, step your left foot to the left side and cross your right foot over your left. Bumping your hip into a turn might seem difficult, but the hip movement actually sends your body in the appropriate direction for the turn. Follow the hip through the turn.

Third 8 Counts

The next steps count "1-2-and, 3-4-and, 5-6, 7-8." There are less "ands" in this section, which alerts you to the fact that the movements in this section happen more slowly. On "1-2-and" step your left foot to the left side, rock onto your right foot and recover on your left. On "3-4-and" step your right foot to your right side, rock back onto your left foot, and recover by stepping forward on your right. On "5-6" step forward with your left foot, then step forward with your right. On "7-8" do a half pivot to the left, then step your right foot in place.

Fourth 8 Counts

The next steps count "1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-and-8," ending the dance at a moderate pace so that dancers can prepare to repeat the dance from the beginning. On "1-2" rock to the left side, then recover on the right, making a quarter turn and stepping to the front. On "3-4" step forward on your left, then step forward on your right. On "5-6" make a half turn as you pivot left and step forward on your right. On "7-and-8" make a full turn forward, walking left, right, left. Begin at the top again with a walk forward on the right then left and continue through the dance.

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