Poll: When Would You Be Willing to Go Swing Dancing Again?

Swing dancing at Clifton's

In this era of COVID-19, I feel like partner dancing will probably be one of the last activities that will resume in a way that we remember it. It’s hard to imagine a worse activity in a pandemic: physical touch and moderate-to-heavy physical activity with multiple partners in a packed room.

Still, many of us are itching to get back out on the dance floor. No one can say when that will happen, but I thought it would be interesting to get a feel for how dancers feel about this.

This poll is specifically about when you’d return to Swing dancing in a large public venue while dancing with a lot of partners, and potentially some strangers, the same we we used to do before COVID-19.

So here’s how you responded:

When would you be willing go Swing dancing at a large public venue such as Clifton''s, PBDA, Rusty's, or Atomic Ballroom and dance with friends and strangers again?

  • Never (1%, 5 Votes)
  • Only after there's a COVID-19 vaccine, and there's been plenty of time for a lot of people to get it. (31%, 190 Votes)
  • Only after there's a COVID-19 vaccine (22%, 132 Votes)
  • By the end of the year (16%, 95 Votes)
  • In a month or so (6%, 39 Votes)
  • In a few weeks (4%, 23 Votes)
  • I'd go now (20%, 120 Votes)

Total Voters: 604

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Some people have asked if the hypothetical conditions in my poll would include mandatory mask-wearing or not. Since I didn’t specify, please answer with the soonest that you’d go out, and put your mask or no mask conditions in the comments below!

Finally – please do not criticize people for their answers in the comments if you disagree with them. This is just a poll! – Brian

28 thoughts on “Poll: When Would You Be Willing to Go Swing Dancing Again?

  1. I won’t start my dances again until a proven vaccine and an overall consensus that it’s safe without a mask and people are comfortable HUGGING again.
    Jonathan (Santa Barbara)

  2. If I end up testing positive for antibodies, I’d personally probably be ready now. For a local dance, if the new daily infection rate in the area goes way down, I might consider attending but otherwise, once I’ve received the vaccine.

  3. Its a fascinating sociological experience we are going through. It illuminates how average people with no medical expertise join hand in hand with some politicians and believe they are somehow qualified to disavow the rock hard opinion of medical specialists who have made a career of studying infectious diseases. You can call it the politicization of science – a very dangerous exercise. As much as I desperately miss dancing, I don’t miss it enough to risk catching or inadvertently spreading this nasty disease. I will jump back in the water when the medical experts say it is safe to do so.

  4. For the safety of those debating this for themselves, something that should be made clear is that masks will not solve this situation. If you want to dance, that is your choice, but you should know the risks.

    The only masks that work in that kind of close quarters situation is an N-95 or higher rating. Lower than that and the viral particles will escape in significant amounts. Most people don’t have that right now. They just have stitched cloth, bandanas, or the flimsy surgical masks that do not stop airborne micro droplets.

    Even while wearing top rated N-95 and P-100 medical masks, doctors and nurses still are catching the virus and dying from it.

    Also, these medical masks are designed for normal breathing conditions, not for intense physical exertion. For one, the virus is going to be pumped out the sides of the mask due to heavy breathing, even with an N-95. For another, the person wearing the mask will not be able to breath well, and will be tempted to remove the mask to catch their breath. I see it happen all the time when I am out. People pull it down from their nose because it’s uncomfortable, which defies the whole purpose.

    That being said, a T-shirt in a blizzard is better than being shirtless. Any mask, no matter the quality, will reduce the amount virus expelled and inhaled. Research shows that a smaller initial dose increases the time for the virus to multiply to the point overwhelming the body. Just like with monetary investment, the larger starting amount determines how long till you reach a certain amount. This longer delay gives your body more time to analyze the virus and create more antibodies to neutralize it, which gives you a better chance at survival.

    A common misconception about this virus is that it only affects the very old. Diabetics are at a much higher risk, regardless of age, as are those who are overweight, and many people in their 40s and 50s have died.

    Additionally, most statistics bifurcate the issue into dead and not dead. “Survival” does not guarantee a good outcome. Their is lasting damage in some cases. Just this past week, a 20-year old had a double lung transplant because the virus basically melted her lungs and fused them onto her chest cavity. There are many reports of significant tissue damage to the point of there being literal holes in patient’s lungs because the tissue has died. This can result in reduced lung capacity, and consequently diminished capacity for physical exertion.

    While this virus is transmitted via the respiratory system, that is just the gateway. Once inside the body, it migrates through the blood and infects the other organs, including the brain in some cases. It also attacks the vessels themselves, leading to cellular debris in the blood, triggering clotting cascades that plug the capillaries, leading to lack of oxygen in all the tissues so that the body slowly suffocates. The beginning stages are exhibited externally by something they have termed “COVID-toes”, where the tissue on the feet begins to die, much like frostbite.

    Comparisons to the common flu are completely inaccurate. The variety of organs this virus attacks is unlike any respiratory disease of which I am aware. We simply don’t know the long term effects of this thing.

    Most (80%) who exhibit symptoms seem to be “okay”. (Read that twice. I’m being specific with my language.) Of those who do show symptoms, about 20% will need hospital care. Some will never experience any symptoms at all, but that percentage of the total infected is still unclear. (Again, I’m being specific with my language.)

    If you are in the “at risk” categories, I suggest you view it as if you got a sports injury and the doctor said you need to heal for a year. People do it all the time. They lived. Hopefully you will too.

  5. IF everybody wore masks, there’s no reason not to.
    Otherwise, unfortunately, it’s not safe.

  6. I really wonder about putting any stock in any vaccine they come up with ;my friend that are actually in the field say this thing is mutating like crazy. so if they came up with vaccine A – it wouldn’t do anything for B-z.
    If you are sick or taking precautions about getting sick… good for you. As for me LETS DANCE.
    PS if it was REALLY all about social distancing and masks and it was REALLY that scary do you think the CDC and the WHO would have stood by ideally while those protests went on over the unfortunate death of that 5 time arrested guy? Talk about breaking all the rules, and if it’s true – those protesters single handedly forced the rest of us into complete quarantie as soon as that starts showing up this week and next.

    1. I completely agree! We’ve been held hostage under false pretences for too long. Let’s dance!!!

  7. Masks would have to be mandatory and wash hands or sanitizer between partners. Outside would feel safer at first.

  8. Since I host the Dance in the park and it’s outdoor, I believe that would be a safer venue than indoors. I have hand sanitizer on hand and wearing of masks would be optional.

  9. Hypotetical question:
    If you have been infected and now are healthy, can you still spread the COVID-19 eg. by dancing with some else that is infected and then afterwards dancing with a non-infected dancer?

    1. Hi Art,

      That is a great question. I think the jury is still out on that one. We’ll have to wait to see what the medical community finds in the data.


  10. I’ll go social dancing when I have immunity. I’d need either a vaccine or if I got it and recovered. Until then I’m only dancing with my quarantine partner.

  11. Outdoor swing dancing with your dedicated quarantine swing dance partner with 10 feet of space away from other couples…

    Live music with each musician in their own clear plastic box.

    That’s the only way we can do it right now…..

  12. Maybe with some guidelines, hand santiziation and a mask, I would advocate starting as soon as possible; this week.

    1. I agree with this. With proper sanitization, ventilation, mask-wearing, and no face touching – I would feel safe now. Limit numbers/crowds with a must-RSVP sign up. Maybe take temperatures before entering? Maybe dance outside? My mental health needs a dance!

  13. I would only dance with my partner and wear a mask for a while. Maybe the venue can only let a certain number of people in at a time.

  14. From the night of my birthday in Jan until mid-Mar when everything shut down, I was going dancing 3/4 times a week…Joe’s on Tue, Lindy Groove on Thur, Atomic on Fri and PBDA on Sat..as far as I know…my circle of friends and people that I danced with never got sick. Open it up. And I’m 70….

  15. I’m not a high risk taker but I REALLY need to go social dancing again! Take temps at the door, have lots of purifier around( as pbda always did) and wah your hands!

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