Ballroom Dances‎ > ‎International Style‎ > ‎Tango‎ > ‎

Four Step

Tango Four Step

The Four Step is a Silver level figure. This online reference gives a detailed description of the dance steps, including timing, footwork, alignment, and movement; steps diagram; 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.

Four step can be commenced in different alignments:
  1. Start with Man facing wall, as shown in chart below.
  2. Start with Man facing DW, different endings:
    • Man makes no turn on between 1-2 to end facing DW, or
    • Man makes 1/8 to L to end facing LOD to follow with Promenade figure moving DC, or,
    • Man makes 1/4 to L to end facing DC DC to move to center.
  3. Start with man facing DW near a corner, different endings:
    • Man turns 1/4 to L between 1-2 to end facing DW of new LOD to follow with a Promenade figure along new LOD, or
    • Man turns 1/8 to L between 1-2 to face wall to follow with a Promenade figure moving DW of new LOD.

Leader

Step Timing Movement 
Alignment Footwork Turn CBM Notes
1
Q
LF fwd in CBMP
To Wall
H
1/8 to L between 1-2
CBM
Compress through right shoulder, hip and foot, use small range of motion (not much turn). Do not over turn upper body.
2
Q RF to side and slightly back
DW
BH
-- --

Q LF back in CBMP
DW
BH
--
--
Compress right side, pull back right hip to allow lady to step outside partner. Do not rotate too much.
4
Q
RF closes to LF slightly back in PP
Facing DW
BH
--
--
For sharper action to turn lady, change weight and then turn lady to PP, elbow points is rotating to right just a bit, but do not rotate lady behind, do still keep lady in front. Separate weight change and turning Lady for a sharper, staccato  effect.

In leading, when the man's right foot comes together with the left foot, this blocks the lady's left foot from moving, so this forces her to change weight. If the man left his right foot forward, the lady could swivel, and continue to step forward with the left foot.

Follower

 Step Timing Movement 
Alignment Footwork Turn CBM 
Notes
 1 Q
RF back in CBMP
Backing wall
BH
1/8 between 1-2
CBM
The figure does not start with RF moving, it starts with allowing left hip to release and rotate to left before moving right foot. It's always the standing hip that releases to create the movement. Right thigh actually relaxed down, starting first CBMP position. Do not just step RF straight back. Place RF underneath the body.
 2 Q LF to side and slightly fwd
BDW
whole foot
-- -- It's a quiet step, not a heel lead step, do not be too powerful here.
 3 RF in CBMP, OP
BDW HB  (foot flat)
1/4 to R between 3-4
CBM
Simply swivel the RF and then place the LF underneath the body. Leaving the frame to Man and allow hip to rotate. All the turn to happen only at the waist area only.

For sharper action, allow weight transfer first and then turn more sharply.
4
Q
LF closes to RF slightly back in PP
Facing DC
BH
--
--