Ahhh the irony of the Seductive Samba! That infectious, pulsating beat that speaks to your inner grooviness and moves you to jump on the dance floor! However, it’s also the same beat that can confuse your brain and body when you try to interpret all the complex layers of rhythm within the music.

What to do?! Well, you’ve got the fabulous Yana Blinova here to bring SENSE to the Samba timing. She breaks down 3 of the most popular timings in the dance.

Watch the video below and let’s get ready to Samba!


Samba is often considered to be the most difficult of the Latin dances. Multiple timings & rhythms and complex body actions are what make it both captivating and challenging.

In this exclusive video from our member library, Yana Blinova (International, British Open & UK Rising Star Latin Champion) explains three of the most common timings used in the Samba.

By using different timings in your routines, you keep excitement and interest as you interpret the music with your dancing. Yana is assisted by another of our fabulous DanceSport Place coaches, Alexander “Sasha” Andreev. 

Ready? Let’s get ready to Samba!


Breakdown of the Three Timings:

A. The first timing option is the regular basic Samba timing for patterns with a bounce action. Yana explains this timing in three ways:

  • By count: 1 a 2.
  • By rhythm: Slow a Slow.
  • By beat value: 3/4, 1/4, full beat. Use this timing from everything from the samba basic to the whisk to botofogos and many more patterns.

B. The second timing option is Slow Quick Quick. There is no bounce when using this timing. Use in patterns like the Open Rock.

C. Last, the third timing option is Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Quick Slow. Use it in the Corta Jaca. This timing also does not have any bounce.



After you’ve watched the video, take what you’ve learned and apply it right away to your dancing.

Here’s how: go through your Samba routine and first, identify any patterns that use timing option A. Try counting those patterns in the three different methods; by timing, then rhythm, then beat value. Make sure you are using bounce in theses patterns.

Next go through your routine again and take the tips from timing option B, then once again, noting any patterns using timing option C. When you’re all done, let us know in the comments what your take-aways were.


Timing is Everything!

Knowing your timing and musicality is KEY in marrying what you are DANCING with what you, the audience and judges are HEARING. If you want to understand this concept more, check out our video interview with musicality expert, adjudicator and UK Closed & British National Pro Latin champion, Goran Nordin.

Goran Norin Melissa Cyr interview “The Importance of Musicality” with Goran Nordin

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If you liked Yana’s video, jump your training to the next level and learn with our expert coaches right here at DanceSport Place.

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samba yana blinova