What is Scottish Country Dance & Music?
The two main types of social Scottish dancing are Country Dancing and Ceilidh Dancing. Although sometimes considered to be completely separate they are both part of a Scottish traditional dance spectrum; from the very informal, easily accessible dances to the more formal complex dances that require some experience and technique.
"Scottish Dance refers to the types of dances that have been danced socially in Scotland for many years"
Scottish Country Dancing is practised at many clubs and events around the world, from informal Ceilidhs to more precise classes and dances. They are all paired with Scotland's wonderful traditional music and provide great exercise; find out what suits you and seek out a group. You don't need to go with a partner; someone will always want to dance. Give it a go! It’s very sociable, you’ll get fit, have fun and make friends.
There are many Scottish Country Dances with straightforward movements that can be danced easily by the novice dancer; however, there are also a significant number of more complex dances that require a degree of proficiency by the participants. Scottish Country Dancing can either be informal or presented in a formal manner, both in style and dress.
Steps & techniques
A helpful beginners' guide to Scottish Country Dancing, including steps, foot positions and descriptions of terms to get you started.
Useful materials for teachers and information on courses and programmes for those interested in becoming Scottish Country Dance teachers.
Have a question?
Have a query about a Scottish Country Dance or your technique? Ask our expert Technique Advisory Panel and view frequently asked questions.
Qualifications for dancers & teachers
Are you just beginning to dance? Or perhaps an experienced teacher looking to fine-tune your technique?
The RSCDs offers various courses and initiatives to help dancers of all ages, backgrounds and skill levels, so we encourage you to explore our many programmes to find the right one to help you carry on learning and perfecting your dancing.
Resources for musicians
Explore our music resources page to learn more about our rich musical heritage and explore how traditional Scottish music is integral to this exquisite dance culture.
For more information on the many different rhythm types found in Scottish Country Dancing, common terminology and audio of well-known tunes, please visit our music resources page.