Six Reasons Why You Should Try Tango

by Mitra Martin

Lots of people want to try Tango, the most beautiful and profound dance in the history of the universe. And most people put it off for way too long. Here are some reasons to try it NOW!

Reason #1. Beautiful People.

I guess this is the biggie. The incredible, beautiful, artistic, sweet, caring, hot, glamorous, patient, kindhearted, accomplished, successful, well-connected, cute, intriguing people you get to meet, hold in your arms...AND DANCE WITH -- and in many cases form lifelong friendships with.

Reason #2. An Endlessly Intriguing Game.

The satisfaction of learning an endlessly fascinating improvisational game. It is seriously neverending and the process of uncovering it layer by layer is hugely rewarding. Sort of like chess, or wine tasting, but instead of JUST involving your brain or palate it involves so much of your being: your brain, your guts, your spirit, your heart, and so on.

Gustavo Naveira in his seminal essay "The New Tango" in Virgina Gift's Tango: A History of Obsession blandly points out that our "sense of infinite possibilities in the choreography of Tango" is a sense "which in fact is accurate." So get busy !

Reason #3. Tango Travel Rocks.

If you can dance, you can seriously land anywhere -- whether it’s Barcelona, Paris, Seoul, or Boston and meet great people. Wearing your tango shoes and clothes, and carrying yourself like a Tango dancer is like a passport to gorgeous, beyond the language barrier.

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Reason #4. Better Quality of Life.

Simply a richer quality of life. Health, depth, meaning-- there’s kind of no need to settle for less. It gets you off your butt, out of your goddamn email, pulls you out of mindless timewasters, and into a habit that’s PROVEN to be good for you.  Specifically...

✿ Better body. Better muscle tone. A healthier spine. Reduces stress. A more flexible body. Better balance. Stronger sense-of-self. More and deeper friendships, and great social bonds are key to good health ! Prevents diseases. More style. More calm. A longer attention span. More pleasure.

✿ Better social life. Self-esteem that comes from becoming great at something, that's how Stefan puts it. More patience. More in touch with your body. Better listening skills. Better communication skills. More trust. More self-awareness. Discipline for the freedom-loving, freedom for the disciplined.

Reason #5. An easy and fun way to be spiritual, and be around spiritual people.

Okay, a KIND-OF, RELATIVELY,  SOMETIMES easy way. But seriously -- Tango technique is a hundred year old meditative practice that has many resonances with ancient Yogic and Taoist theories of relationships. Did you know that 44% of Tango dancers are attracted to Tango because of it’s “meditative and spiritual feel and quality” (!!) according to Tango festival organizer Clay Nelson’s survey. Here are the full results. A lot of people find that they learn a lot about themselves through the world of Tango.

“Tango is like a meditation...your mind and body have to be to totally present in the moment.”

- Celine, Actress

“Tango helps me to practice being more present in the moment.”

- Maureen, Chemist

Reason #6. More romance.

While many single people come to Tango, the shared adventure of learning to dance can bring a lot to couples in relationships too. Scientists found out that dancing TANGO with your partner lowers the stress hormone (cortisol) in your body and makes you feel calmer, sexier, and more closely bonded ! And that other dances don’t have this effect !!

Here are more things that actual people said about Tango, and we didn't pay them to.

“Tango brings focus, beauty and human connection to my life. I feel reenergized and more happy when I dance tango, especially with a balanced cocktail of social dancing and class learning.”

- Rose, Actress

“To me tango is about sharing intimate experiences with strangers and loved ones alike. I find the dance to be a form of immaculate communication.”

- Maya, Fashion Designer

“Tango brought more adventure and joy into my life as well as more wonderful people and friends.”

- Katya, Psychotherapist

“Tango has made me recognize and cultivate qualities within myself that has made it easier to form a richer connection with other people.”

- Kris, Software Engineer

“Tango brings into my life the ineffable joy of connecting with people and a continual challenge to improve and refine a highly complex skill.”

- Vita, Computational Linguist

“Tango has made me a better athlete. I have increased body awareness and body control. Better balance and footwork.”

- Johnny, Boxer

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Mitra Martin

Mitra Martin is Program Director at the Oxygen Tango where her focus is developing an interconnected community learning experience, and facilitating conversation around excellence in Tango as a portal to personal and social transformation.