Square Dance Quick Tutorial


Quick Tutorial Series
Acey Deucey
Alamo Rings
All 8 Circulate
All 8 Spin the Top
Allemande Left
Any Hand
As Couples
Bend the Line
Box Circulate
Box Counter Rotate
Box the Gnat
Brace Thru
California Twirl
Cast a Shadow
Cast Off 3/4
Centers In
Chain Down the Line
Chain Reaction
Chase Right
Clover and ...
Column Circulate
Couple Numbers
Couples Circulate
Couples Hinge
Couples Trade
Courtesy Turn
Cross Over Circulate
Cross Run
Cross Trail Thru
Cut the Diamond
Cut the Hourglass
Cycle and Wheel
Diamond Circulate
Dixie Grand
Dixie Style to a Wave
Dosado to a Wave
Double Pass Thru
Double Star Thru
Ends Bend
Explode and ...
Explode the Line
Explode the Wave
Fan the Top
Ferris Wheel
Flip the Diamond
Flip the Hourglass
Fold (and Cross Fold)
Follow Your Neighbor
fractional Tops
Grand Square
Grand Swing Thru
Half Sashay
Half Tag
Hourglass Circulate
Horseshoe Turn
In Roll Circulate
Ladies Chain
Ladies In Men Sashay
Left Swing Thru
Linear Cycle
Load the Boat
Out Roll Circulate
Pair Off
Partner Hinge
Partner Tag
Partner Trade
Pass and Roll
Pass In
Pass the Ocean
Pass the Sea
Pass Thru
Pass to the Center
Peel Off
Peel the Top
Ping Pong Circulate
Quarter In
Quarter Thru
Recycle (from a wave)
Recycle (from facing couples)
Right and Left Thru
Right Roll to a Wave
Scoot and Dodge
Scoot Back
Single Circle to a Wave
Single Wheel
Six by Two Acey Deucey
Slide Thru
Spin Chain & Exch. the Gears
Spin Chain the Gears
Spin Chain Thru
Spin the Top
Split Circulate
Split Counter Rotate
Split Square Thru
Square Chain Thru
Square Thru
Star Thru
Step and Slide
Step to a Wave
Swap Around
Sweep 1/4
Swing and Mix
Swing Thru
Tag the Line
Three Quarter Tag
Touch 1/4
Track 2
Trade By
Trade Circulate
Trade the Wave
Transfer the Column
Triple Scoot
Triple Star Thru
Triple Trade
Turn and Deal
Turn Thru
Walk and Dodge
Weave the Ring
Wheel and Deal
Wheel Around
Wheel Thru
Tutorials Home
  This "quick tutorial" introduces the general idea of a call and explains the most common cases. It does not explain or illustrate all cases. For additional details and/or examples, refer to the links in the "MORE INFO" box.

Trade means that two dancers switch places, each walking forward in a semi-circle into the other dancer's position. In doing this, they each turn exactly 180 degrees, to end facing the opposite wall.

There are a number of ways that the caller can identify which dancers should trade. One way is by their position. For example, in an Ends Trade, the end dancers will drop hands with the adjacent center dancers, and then walk individually to the other end of the line.

For a Centers Trade from any kind of line where the centers are facing in opposite directions, the dancers will drop hands with the adjacent end dancers, but will keep holding hands with each other. As they walk into each other's spot, they will be doing the equivalent of an Arm Turn 1/2.

The dancers don't have to both be ends, or both centers. They can also be identified in other ways, such as Boys vs. Girls. But they must be in the same line as each other. They can be close together or far apart, but they will always be directly left or right -- never forward or back.

For a Boys Trade, just the Boys trade places with each other -- the Girls don't move.

For a Girls Trade, just the Girls trade places with each other -- the Boys don't move.

If the two dancers who are trading start facing the same direction (the same wall), they will need to pass by each other, on the same side of the line, on their way to their destinations. In that case, they pass right shoulders. Note also that, since they started facing the same direction as each other, and they each turned around halfway, they will end facing the same direction as each other.

Regardless of the type of Trade, the following rules always apply:

  • Two dancers will be switching places with each other.
  • They may be close together or far apart, but they will be starting "in the same line".
  • They will each walk forward, in a semi-circular path.
  • They will each end up turning 180 degrees, to face the opposite direction from when they started.