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2. Three Step

The Three Step is the Foxtrot version of a Left Foot Forward Change, consisting of three progressive forward steps danced to the counts "Slow, quick quick". Being a type of Change Step, its main purpose is to follow a Reverse Turn (or any figure ended with a Feather Finish) and prepare a Natural Turn. Unlike the Feather Step, the Three step is danced with all 3 steps taken in line with partner.

The man begins in line with the lady, facing diagonal wall, and takes 3 forward steps, starting with the left foot. The body turns slightly to left so that the second and third steps (right foot and left foot, respectively) are taken with the right side slightly in advance. The lady's part is the natural opposite, beginning with her right foot back.

The Three Step is noted for it's slightly unusual cycle of rise & fall. Most 3-step patterns in the swing dances use a 3-step cycle of rise & fall that spans the entire pattern, with dancers rising (or beginning to rise) toward the end of the first step, and lowering at the end of the third step. In contrast, the Three Step uses a two-step cycle of rise & fall, taken over steps 2-3. There is no rise at all during the first step.

The normal Three Step, as outlined in the man's and lady's charts, moves toward diagonal wall in preparation for a Natural Turn (or any figure that begins similarly). But the Three Step can also move down line of dance, assuming the previous figure was ended this way, and still be followed by a Natural Turn, taking 1/2 turn to right over steps 1-3. Additionally, the Three Step can begin moving toward diagonal wall, and be turned 1/8 to left to end moving down line of dance. This practice is less common now than in the past, but it provides an interesting variation to use on occasion.


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