3 Basic MUVES Lesson


2 Modifications

Dancing with the 3 Basic MUVES

Learn to WALK, TAP and ROOT

Basic MUVES Demo - Dance-along

“Basic MUVES Talk”

Basic MUVES Video

“3 Basic MUVES”

This lesson explores the basic movement elements of the MUVE Method. They are super easy and anyone can do them. The most elementary move one can make on two legs is what we call a Basic MUVE. Knowing about the 3BMs (Basic MUVES) can help a dancer to get moving and become more confident and creative in their dance.

The most common Basic MUVE is WALK. It means to shift your weight from one foot to the other. When we walk with the rhythm we are already dancing. Then we can explore with walking fast, walking slow, different directions etc.

Next up is TAP. Here we shift our weight only every second beat and use the “free” beat to accentuate the rhythm in other ways like for example with a tap, clap or a kick in the air.

ROOT is the third Basic MUVE. Here we use both legs at the same time. With knees slightly bend we “hop” and the whole body follows the up and down movement.

Practice the Basic MUVES in many variations. Basic movement patterns stay constant but other aspects change.

Variations are created by shifts in:
Balance • Direction • Speed • Size • Intensity • Origin of Motion • Accentuation

Example: WALK
Walk Forward – Backward – Sideways
Slow Down – Speed Up
Stay Low – Jump High
Make it Big – Make it Small

The 3BMs are bedrock of the experienced MUSE (lead dancer) because keeping the Basic MUVE steady for an extended time helps the following dancers to catch on to the movement. A Master MUSE will only change her Basic MUVE sparingly. Any dance movement can be described with the Basic MUVES.

Sample Videos for 3 Basic MUVES Lesson

Knowledge of the Basic MUVES helps shy people to get a start on moving to the music. If you don’t know what to do, do the Basic MUVES and you are dancing!

Principle of the Day


In between the dances find time to and talk about
• Relax, this is not a competition
• MUVE is personal, you decide how you want to MUVE
• It’s not about how it looks but how it feels to you
• Did you have fun dancing with new friends?

Basic MUVES – advanced

If your students are experienced MUVERS or older, you can deepen the learning and explore the Modifications and Combinations of the Basic MUVES.

Modifications: There are two Modifications in the Basic MUVES System. Like the 3 Basic MUVES they can be performend in many variations (fast, slow, big, small etc.) If you have a digital set-up, you can play the Basic MUVES Demo above to aid your teaching.

The first Modification is the Reverse TAP. It works in the same way as the regular Tap, but now the accent is on the 1st & 3rd beat instead of the 2nd & 4th beat. Instead of “step, accent, step, accent” we do “accent, step, accent, step.” Try it out. I feels different, more like a traditional down-beat emphasis (like a polka – 1st and 3rd beat) as opposed to a blues of pop emphasis where the accent is on the up-beat (2nd & 4th beat.)

The second Modification is ROOT B. While we balance on both legs in a regular Rooting move, we now only use one leg for Root-B. One leg is planted securely to the ground, while the other one is fee to explore the options. Switching from one to the other leg is always an option at any time.

Combinations: Here we combine 2 MUVES into a movement.
You can combine MUVES either one after the other (in sequence) or at the same time (synchronous.)

Sequence Example: “Grapevine” (combo-Icon below, 1st left): Two beats of WALK (step, step), and two beats of TAP (step, tap).

Synchronous Example: “Shimmy” (combo-Icon above, 2nd from right): Stand with both legs rooted and shift your weight left and right (walk in place).

Request a combination and let the kids figure out how to do it.

We learned

Hawaii Content and Performance Standards for the 3 Basic Muves Lesson

Each MUVE Lesson has been created to include Hawaii Content & Performance Standards, enabling teachers to use selected benchmarks to plan a standards-based instruction for a Physical Education or Fine Arts lesson.

Click here to see the Educational Benchmarks for the 3 Basic Muves Lesson