Balboa is a swing dance from the same era as Lindy Hop. The name comes from the Balboa Peninsula in Newport Beach (Orange County, California, USA) where they danced at the Balboa Pavillion on the beach and later at the dance hall Rendezvous. The dance was called the “Balboa Shuffle” by some, due to a characteristic shuffle of the dancer’s feet on the dancefloor.
Balboa is divided into two types: Pure bal, where the dance couple always hold contact with each other at the chest, and Bal swing, where the couple sometimes part for different turns. Many dancers mix the two dance types together on the dance floor. Compared to Lindy Hop, Balboa is danced in a more upright posture and requires far less space on the dancefloor. Balboa’s focus on footwork and small moves leads to a lot of dancers dancing it to high tempo music, but it is also suitable for moderate tempo music.
Balboa is danced to the same type of swing music as Lindy hop and is perfect to dance at Lindy hop evenings, especially to the faster tunes.