Cuban Breaks

Cha Cha Cha Cuban Breaks

Cha Cha Cuban Breaks is a Silver Level figure. This online reference gives a detailed description of the dance steps, including timing, and movement, technique; a list of figures that may precede or follow the pattern; and videos providing instruction and demonstration of the figure, techniques and practice routines that include it.

Cuban Breaks may be danced at any time when in Closed or Open Position without hold, from Open PP, Open CPP, RSP and LSP positions. Commencing position and hold is according to preceding figure.

Left Foot Cuban Break (Lady or Man)

Step Timing Movement
Turn Notes
LF fwd and across, toe turned out. Small step. 1/8 to R May be danced without turn. Keep hands in center.

Upper body lifted, light.

LF fwd check, flat foot, small step, L side compressed, L hip high. R shoulder opposition Compact, no big spine movement. R heel up.
& Replace weight to RF
Ball Flat. weight on RF, RF heel down, whole foot. L heel up, straight leg.

Ball of RF pretty much stays the same place, just doing heel up and heel down.
3 LF to side 1/8 to L Inside edge of LF, Toe, Ball.

Start stepping with bent L knee to side, do not do big step, just underneath shoulder, then straighten L leg, squeeze Lside, L hip very up high, L heel up, leg line, R knees bent. Keep R heel down (or it can be slightly up).

Spine not moving to LF and then back. Spine stays.

Focus on hip and side crunch/compression for the high hip effect.
4 & Replace weight to RF -- Ball Flat. R heel down.
5 6 7 4&1 Repeat 1-3 Same as step 1-3 Ball Flat/ Ball Flat / Ball Flat

1: finish L hip, shoulder flat, prepping to go the other side. 2 legs are both straight.

Right Foot Cuban Break (Lady or Man)

Step Timing Movement 
Turn Notes
RF fwd and across, toe turned out. Small step. 1/8 to L Same technique.
& Replace weight to LF

3 RF to side 1/8 to R
4 & Replace weight to LF --
5 6 7 4&1 Repeat 1-3 Same as step 1-3 .

  • On Cuban Breaks, use the hips to counterbalance foot movements, to allow for faster, free movement. 
  • Both Man and Lady would be stepping forward on Cuban Breaks, except one is doing RF Cuban Break, the other is doing LF Cuban Break.

Split Cuban Break (Lady or Man)

Split Cuban Breaks can be danced in place or normal Cuban Break and may be commenced with either foot in any of the positions given for Cuban Breaks.
  • 2 & 3: Dance 1-3 of LF Cuban Break LRL
    • Small side steps, body spine not moving much, keep under the body
    • 2: opposite shoulder forward
    • Finish with on 3 with two straight legs, settle hip, shoulder flat before changing direction.
  • 4 & 1: Dance 1-3 of RF Cuban Break RLR
  • Footwork: Ball flat on each step.
  • Variation: Dance from Open PP or Open CPP: turn, changing hands as in new York. Dance more turn if dancing the New York with quick timing and use only one step in place of the chasse.

Split Cuban Break with Guapacha Timing (Lady or Man)

With RF fwd Split Cuban Break:
  • Beat count "2&3 4&1
  • 2: hold, Guapacha timing part.
  • &: RF fwd, flat. LF heel up. Very fast.
  • 3: L heel down. R heel up.
  • 4&1: side chasse.
Variations when commenced facing partner without hold:
  • Amalgamation:
    • Man: LF Cuban Break; Lady: RF Time Step, or 1-5 of Closed Basic Movement
    • Man: RF Cuban Break; Lady:  accept the lead and dance a LF Cuban Break.
    • Man: Spot or Switch Turn to R; Lady RF Cuban Break
    • Man: RF Time Step, or 6-10 Closed Basic Movement; Lady: Spot or Switch Turn to R.
Variations when commenced in RSP or LSP:
  • Amalgamation:
    • Fan (234&1 234&1)
    • Hockey Stick ended in LSP  (234&1 234&1)
    • Man: LF Cuban Break; Lady: RF Cuban Break (2&3&4&1)
    • Man: RF Cuban Break; Lady: LF Cuban Break  (2&3&4&1)
    • New York LSP (No turn on 1) (234&1)
    • Spot Turn to L (Lady to R) (234&1)
  • Amalgamation:
    • Hand to Hand RSP (23)
    • Three Cha Cha Chas Fwd in RSP (4&1 2&3 4&1)
    • Split Cuban Break (Man: RF, Lady LF) (2&3 4&1)
    • New York RSP (No turn on 1) end facing partner (234&1)