Is Tap Dancing Hard? (11 Things You Can Expect)

Tap dancing can be physically demanding but requires tremendous coordination and balance to master. Dancers become downright acrobatic as they move around the stage and into a freestyle dance routine.

You can see people everywhere trying to learn the skill, but it’s not something everyone can do quickly. So, if you’ve ever been curious about tap, here’s what you can expect when you try it!

Is Tap Dance Hard? 

Tap dancing is a genre of dance that originated in America, and it’s one of the most complicated types of dance to master. This skill requires a high level of energy, agility, and coordination! Moreover, Tap dance demands perfect balance, coordination, and artistic interpretation. However, Tap dancing is an uplifting, fun, and exciting form of dance. The best part? You don’t even need any previous experience!

Tune in as we discuss what to expect when learning tap dancing that might help you improve!

1. Tap Dance is Unique 

Tap dancing is a unique style that necessitates accurate and rapid footwork. In addition, the dancer’s shoe functions as a timbre since each part produces a distinctive beat and sound.

It is also considered the most distinctive and sensual dance genre. On the other hand, rhythm and broadway’s tap are the two primary forms of tap dancing.

Broadway frequently showcases musical theater, emphasizes dancing with musicality, and its artists believe they are continuing the jazz legacy through rhythm tap.

As you can see, some performers claim that tap dancing is the purest form of dance because the action creates music on its own!

2. Tap Dance is Tough to Master

Some individuals claim that tap dancing is the most challenging dance style to learn.

If you’ve never tapped before, it can take you a few weeks to become comfortable with your shoes and the fast weight shifting that is a considerable part of tap dancing.

However, tap dance music often contains more rhythms and higher intensity as such young dancers can develop a strong sense of rhythm and timing.

Tap dancing requires the development of performance abilities like expression, focus, musicality, communication, emphasis, and timing.

Beginners should be encouraged to learn necessary time signatures and be able to apply them to the tap steps in addition to mastering the tap vocabulary such as buck, brush, dig and draw!

Overall, instructors agree that learning this type of dance might take longer, from six months to two years!

3. Tap Dance is an Indigenous American Dance Genre

Tap dance, an American dance form, has been practiced for around 300 years.

It first appeared in the southern United States in the 1700s as a synthesis of British and West African musicals and is now globally embraced worldwide.

4. Tap Dancing is Energizing and Easier than Ballet

Tap dancing is often a very energizing form of dance that can be performed independently or in groups.

You must be able to move swiftly from one area to another and perform quick footwork movements with your feet and legs.

While Tap dancing requires a significant amount of discipline, it isn’t as strict as other dance disciplines, like ballet.

It’s usually best to take tap dance lessons from a certified instructor. 

However, you can also learn how to tap dance even if no classes are nearby. Check online platforms for free tutorials.

Overall, Americans claim that tap dancing was the original type of street dance

5. Tap Dance Resources

You don’t need special tap shoes to learn some basic tap dance moves. Dress shoes, homemade tap shoes, or even a pair of worn sneakers are all acceptable options.

However, to get professional training, you must have certain essential things, such as tap shoes, a practice floor, music, and workout clothes.

If you have that extra budget, you may invest in a new tap shoe that would cost between $27-$99 from online shops and local stores.

Lastly, find a tap dance studio in your area by doing some online search!

6. Join Tap Dance Classes

Join Tap Dance Classes

After acquiring your tap-dancing resources, as previously mentioned, it is time to focus on your dance classes and lessons.

Enroll in adult tap courses to learn more challenging routines and exercises that will help you tap dance more proficiently.

Some dance schools may offer various options, from fun exercises to beginner lessons. 

Tap lessons are often taught at dancing studios, costing between $45 to $150, depending on the difficulty and experience. 

7. Learning from Mistakes in Tap Dance

Continue to learn while making mistakes! 

Any time is good to review or practice that combo tap move. Tappers usually get carried away and rush through the combinations to keep up with the tempo. 

However, this could unintentionally become a bad habit if steps overlap and you skip some combinations. So, go slowly and make an effort to dance more clearly.

Regardless, you may fall behind in some classes. In that case, you can practice more at home using free YouTube videos or take more paid online lessons. 

You must learn the four fundamental tap-dancing steps—shuffle ball, ball change, step-heel and heel-step, and single buffalo.

Like other dances, it’s essential to keep learning and regularly practice tap routines.  

8. Challenges and Complexity of Steps in Tap Dance

In Tap dancing, dancers can mix up the steps easily. 

Additionally, the complexity of the moves can occasionally be challenging for dancers.

Some repeat the dance because they have trouble remembering the steps. Undoubtedly, things got off to a rough start.

Unfortunately, beginner dancers might be highly eager. Still, they might not have the coordination necessary to pick up sophisticated routines!

9. Tap Dance Benefits 

For beginners, learning tap dancing can be an excellent workout that increases the heart rate. Additionally, it is probably more fun than jogging around the block.

Many want to train the significant muscles in the legs and the core, and they see tap dancing as a fun method to keep in shape.

Others assume that learning tap will improve their balance and lower their chance of developing back problems.

At the same time, some of these students merely see it as a newly emerging hobby and a creative setup!

10. Susceptible To Injuries

Because tap dancers’ moves require maintaining the hip and knee motionless as the feet move quickly, they are particularly vulnerable to kneecap injuries.

Common knee problems include tendonitis, cartilage tears, sprained or torn ligaments, and arthritis, all of which can lead to pain and swelling.

11. A Career in Tap Dance as an Instructor

With years of learning, practice, and immense effort, one can have a successful tap dancing journey, from student to professional coach. 

There are various career paths, such as a dance instructor, choreographer, dance photographer, dance filmmaker, or dance medicine specialist. 

Additionally, tap dance instructors can charge between $45 to $150 per hour for their studio sessions.

To learn more, you can also see our posts on Ballet, Tango, and Zumba.


Tap dancing is not just about having the right shoes. Tap dancing is about rhythm. 

It’s vital to have good posture and proper balance. There are complexities in tap dance, but remember that your instructors can help you improve your routine and core balance. Still, exercise enough caution because tap dance is intricate on your body, and you cannot simply risk exposing yourself to injuries!

Learn more about “is tap dancing a good exercise?“.