I was taught that the man should verbally ask the lady to dance.
And, that the lady should accept unless she has a physical impediment, is worried about being hurt by dancing with the man or has some other good reason (see man's responses below).
If ladies are asking men to dance, I would expect the same rules to apply to men. Not dancing would not generally be an acceptable response.
I will agree that asking the man once or twice is probaby sufficient in most cases. And, I will decline (with a verbal reason) if I need to get back to dance with my wife who has been patiently waiting or may deline if its a repeated request and there are unaccomplaned ladies who have not have had a chance to dance.
I am not sure if you meant what you said in the first paragraph, or if you meant what you said in the last sentence.
Either way, I must disagree if you believe that a person can never turn anyone down.
I do not think anyone should be forced to dance eight or ten dances with one person who they do not enjoy dancing with.
If this is the rule, you could pay your ten dollars, (Or maybe even fifteen.), and you could rent a human for the entire evening.
I would never ask a woman, (Who was a consderabaly better dancer than I am.), to dance more than twice.
I believe that maybe your ten dollars gives you the right to dance with each man, (Or woman.), two or maybe three times in the evening.
However, I am not for rent for the entire evening. (Certainly not for ten dollars!) I have been offered Fifty dollars, (And more.), to dance with a woman for an entire evening. I refused because I like to dance with everyone.
I try to dance with everyone during the evening. I never turn down a first request, and seldom turn down a second request.
However, I also pay my entrance fee, and I should get to dance with the other women. I also want to dance with my friends, and the women who danced with me when I was new to the studio.
I think it is asking a bit much if you think I should miss dancing with my friends just because one or two,(Or three or four.), women are rude enought to think that they have a right to my entire evening.
Sorry, but twice is enough for one evening.
Asking a man to teach you to dance all evening is just too much.
I think it is a great idea for a lady to ask a guy to dance. I've taken lessons for a long time and the one thing my instructors taught me was never turn down a lady's invitation to dance, without a real good reason and then, only with an explanation. For example, I need to catch my breath, how about the next dance or I don't know this dance but how about the next (dance type you know). Once they ask you and you dance with them, you can pretty much expect them to accept your invitation to dance in the future.
I feel good whenever a lady asks me to dance with her. I would never say no if invited by a lady.
A tip to ladies: Please keep in mind that when you invite a guy to dance, you should follow his lead, no matter bad or good lead. If it's a bad lead, you may go along just for the sake of fun. If you try to correct him too much, he might be turned off and not enjoy dancing with you.
I have experience with a lady who is a good dancer. But whenever she could not follow my lead (good lead that I learned from professionals; she obviously hadn't learned the move) she tries to correct me. That usually turns me off.
As a Dj and dance instructor I gently admonish my dancers that in the Ballroom Dance world there is only a leader, follower and dance etiquette. Here men and women are equal in every way, only they have different jobs to perform and synchronize in order to create great art. Romantic and social traditions fall outside the Ballroom floor and as has already been said, dancers are here to dance, period (and of course make new dancing friends).
While it's true that "outside the floor" tradition says a man should initiate and ask, at the same time it is more common for men to be intimidated with dancing than for women. Yes, we agree that there are more females out there that generally get rhythm, beat and balance, than males. Thus it's quite balanced and again being equal it doesn't and must not matter who asks who to dance. Much more important (I stress this to the guys) is that NO ONE should ever turn anyone down for a first dance request. If you do YOU :( are in violation of Ballroom Etiquette. :)
"Much more important (I stress this to the guys) is that NO ONE should ever turn anyone down for a first dance request. If you do YOU :( are in violation of Ballroom Etiquette. :)"
I generally agree with you DJ, but there are times when turning down someone's first dance offer shouldn't be considered a violation. There is a guy in our area who sometimes hurts ladys he dances with in the manner he leads turns. He cranks their arms. There is a woman who is known to get her legs too close to your groin. (She's feeling you out, and it borders on being a sex crime.) She does make you quite good at outside partner figures, though. Another person's personal hygene isn't always what it should be. We don't see these people too often anymore because people have turned them down for dances. I consider it my duty to warn friends about these other people should they show up at a social dance. I wouldn't want my friends hurt or violated. So there are times when saying "No thank you" is appropriate.