Three Step Turn

Samba Three Step Turn

The Samba Three Step Turn is a Gold 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.

Three Step Turn is used as an entry to Samba Locks and is preceded by 1-3 of Closed or Open Rocks, or Promenade and Counter Promenade Runs.


  • 1: Close LF to RF | -- | BF

    • Man dances Stationary Samba Walks, turning to left.

    • Turn Lady to L taking L to R hand hold, then release hold with R hand continuing to turn her stronly to L under raised L arm during step 1.

    • (Note: when preceded by Closed Rock , Man is already holding lady's R hand in his L hand.)

  • a: RF back w/o weight. Toe turned out | -- | I/E of T (Pressure)

    • Continue to turn Lady strongly to L on step 2 and 3, lowering L arm at the end of the her turn.

  • 2: Take minimal weight to RF, draw LF back | -- | F (Pressure on ball of foot)

    • During Lady's turn, lady moves to Man's left side, to end in Open CPP.


  • 1: RF to side turning L, then continue to turn 5/8 L on RF. | Turn to L | BF, then turn on B of RF with foot flat (T of LF)

    • Note the difference in timing for Lady. No bounce.

    • Options for turns: either continuous turn/pivot (3 half turns), or do spiral on 1 and 3.

    • To make turn appear sharper, turn shoulder continuously, but delay head turning, then sharp head turn. Spot where your are going.

  • 2: LF fwd continuing to turn L | Turn to L | BF

    • Use core when turning

  • 3: RF to side turning 1/4 L, then continue to turn 3/8 on RF (Spiral action) | Turn to L | BF, then turn on B of RF with foot flat (T of LF)

    • Finish the R side: squeeze/compress R side, before pushing off RF to step LF fwd for next step.

    • Option: body turned, but keep head looking at partner, push connection with Man before turning head in next Samba Locks.

Preceding Figures

  1. Closed Rocks

  2. Natural Basic Movement

  3. Open Rocks

  4. Promenade And Counter Promenade Runs

  5. Reverse Basic Movement

  6. Side Basic Movement

Following Figures

  1. Samba Locks