Welcome, dance enthusiasts! If you’ve ever been mesmerized by the electrifying shuffle moves at dance festivals or rave parties and wondered how to master those yourself, you’re in the right place. Today, I’ll walk you through the iconic Running Man step-by-step, ensuring that even absolute beginners can start shuffling confidently in just five minutes. So, let’s grab our glow sticks and dive into the rhythmic world of shuffling!

What is the Running Man?

The Running Man is a fundamental step in the art of shuffle dancing, characterized by a rhythmic, alternating footwork that mimics a stationary runner. It’s a visually impactful move that forms the backbone of many shuffle routines, and mastering it is your first step toward becoming a skilled shuffler.

Equipment and Setup

Before we begin, it’s essential to wear comfortable shoes and have a little space to move around safely. Optionally, you can place three markers on the ground—front, center, and back—to help guide your foot positioning. This setup will assist you in visualizing the move’s spatial dynamics.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: The Basic Position

  1. Starting Stance: Stand up with your left foot slightly forward and your right foot back. This isn’t a dramatic stance; a simple, relaxed positioning will do.
  2. First Move: Bring your left foot to the center and simultaneously lift your right foot. Think of it as an “in and up” motion.
  3. Adding a Hop: Incorporate a small hop with your body as you perform the “in and up” to add dynamics to the move.

Step 2: The Transition

  1. Right Foot Forward: From the hopped position, place your right foot down in front and simultaneously slide your left foot back to its original position.
  2. Repeat on Opposite Side: Now start with the right foot forward and left foot back. Pull the right foot in and lift the left foot up.
  3. Practice the Hop: Continue practicing this transition, adding the hop to blend the movements smoothly.

Step 3: Mastering the Flow

  1. Continuity: Once you’re comfortable with the transition, it’s time to focus on continuity and fluidity. The key is to make the steps and transitions seamless.
  2. Running Man Cycle: Always remember, the foot that’s in the back comes up and bends, and the foot in front slides back.

Step 4: Syncing to Music

  1. Understanding the Beat: Most dance music is structured in 4/4 time, meaning you have a base beat you can count as 1, 2, 3, 4.
  2. Breaking Down the Beat: For the Running Man, break each count into two segments (1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &), where the ‘&’ represents the midpoint transitions.
  3. Applying Steps to Beat: Each “1, 2, 3, 4” is a step out, and each “&” is when you’re transitioning or your foot is in mid-move.

Practice Routine

  • Start Slow: Begin by practicing without music. Focus on the technique and foot positioning.
  • Add Music: Once comfortable, introduce music at a slow tempo and gradually increase the speed as you gain confidence.
  • Repetition is Key: Repeat the movements until they feel natural and effortless.
See also  How to train your musicality as a dancer

Tips for Beginners

  • Stay Relaxed: The more relaxed your body, the more fluid your movements will appear.
  • Focus on Form: Ensure your form is correct to avoid developing bad habits.
  • Record Yourself: Watching recordings of yourself can help identify areas for improvement.


By now, you should have a basic understanding of how to perform the Running Man and begin your journey into shuffle dancing. Remember, like any dance form, shuffling requires practice and patience. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t get it right immediately—keep practicing, and soon you’ll be able to hit the dance floor with confidence.

I hope this tutorial has been helpful. If you’ve enjoyed learning the Running Man, don’t forget to like, subscribe, and let me know in the comments if you’d like more tutorials on shuffle dance moves. Happy dancing, and see you in the next video!

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