About Clogging

Clogging is a percussive step dance that originated in the Appalachian Mountains during the mid-18th century. It is a melting pot of Irish, Scottish, Dutch, and French Canadian folk dances, square dance, tap, and other influences.

Referencing its various styles it has been called flat-footing, buck dancing, jigging, and more recently, power tap. Footwork has evolved from improvised solos with a straight-forward beat to more complex rhythms and choreographies.

Originally dancers were accompanied by fiddle and bluegrass music. Currently cloggers dance to songs with a strong downbeat from many genres--Pop, Country, Rock, Bluegrass, Christian, etc.

Today there is a wide spectrum of clogging ranging from recreational and workshop groups to precision competition teams. Competition categories include solos, duets, teams, a capella, traditional, precision, line, hoedown, . . .

Clogging differs from Tap Dance in several ways, such as:

    1. Much of the action takes place on the upbeats (&a1, &a2, . . . .)
    2. It has a double bounce, up down motion
    3. Steps often start on the left foot
    4. Clogging taps have two layers that click against each other as well as the floor
    5. More straight rhythms, less use of syncopation or swing
    6. Many steps include drag slides or mark the downbeat with the heel hitting the floor

For more about the history of clogging:

A Brief History of Clog Dancing by Jeff Driggs

PBS Learning: Bluegrass Clogging

About This Site

This site is dedicated to dancers who live in rural areas or who may not have access to all of the dance resources and opportunities that are available elsewhere. It is for those who love dancing enough to search out and make their own opportunities. It is a thank you to parents with limited financial resources who make sacrifices for their dancing children. It is a token of friendship for fellow dancers who get sore feet from less than ideal dance floors, but are still eager to learn that amazing new step and make it your own.

As you can see, this is a work in progress. It was created by a teacher living in small town Wyoming for her students and any others who may find it helpful. You might notice the material falls between very traditional clogging and very modern (e.g. does include tap steps/pull backs, doesn't include fusion jazz/hip hop movements).

The clogging community is an inclusive one. You don't have to be a certain size or age to take part. One purpose of this site is to foster more cooperation and camaraderie. If you have tips or resources suitable for this site that you would like to share, feel free to email me. In the future I would like to add videos of the circle figures and partner work. I'd also like to add a section listing recital and performance themes (e.g. patriotic, Christmas, etc.) with corresponding music and narration ideas. Your input is welcomed.

Contact Info: cloggingresource(at)gmail.com

© 2013-2021 Angela Dansie All Rights Reserved