After years of research and total journalistic integrity, I've boiled down the reasons women take up ballroom dancing into several, highly believable, completely viable statistical categories.*
Derek Hough 15%
This little chunk of the pie could be any of those hunky Dancing With The Stars pros (or troupe members are pretty covetable these days, I guess): the Chmerkovskiy bros, Mark Ballas, Tony Dovolani, what have you. Let's expand this category to any dancing celebrity throughout time: Patrick Swayze, Gene Kelly, Mikhail Baryshnikov, John Travolta, Ryan Gosling.
Men that make dancing look sexy (which, take note, boys, is ALL MEN) have a lot of us women walking into a studio. Swoon-worthy guys with the ability to catch our swoon and make it look graceful? SOLD.
Back in the day, I learned most of the choreography to Newsies in the hopes that knowing the moves to "Seize the Day" would help me meet Christian Bale. AND I STILL HOLD THAT BELIEF. [Stops typing to practice and writes another fan letter to Mr. Bale.]
To Watch Fabulous Men Shake Their Fabulous Rears 32%
This percentage seems a little high, but it must be true, because it came straight from the pages of Riot and Frolic.
Women appreciate fine art, so it holds that if one of those studly men mentioned above has donned a nice pair of pants and is doing some nice artistic moves in those pants, we will appreciate it.
Yes, we are objectifying you. Get over it.
Fancy Dresses and Shoes 12%
Speaking for myself as a former tomboy, this was 0% in my book for a long time. Now, of course, I know the power of putting on an armful of rhinestone bangles and a custom-made dress.
But I know many ladies walk into a studio for the first time and are vying for a reason to put on a ballgown and channel their inner Diana (Spencer or Prince or whatever) or maybe the ankle strength to justify those Jimmy Choos.
Romantic Notions 14%
Dancing is romantic, right? Ballroom dancing takes two, right? If you're a one and would like to be part of a pair, it stands to reason that taking up a hobby specifically meant for two people might lead to a partner, right?
Let's just leave that at that.
[For as many stories I have supporting this idea, I have just as many to refute it.]
Competitive Athletic Endeavor 7%
Not to be the exception, but this was me. I was wrecked from gymnastics and had watched PBS Championship Ballroom Dancing for years.
[^OMG THIS YEAR^]
It looked super fun, had cool music, and seemed to play to my skill set.
Trying Something New 21%
Soooooo, maybe my statistics are a little off. A LOT of ladies needed a new hobby, a reason to get out of the house, to meet new people, and/or to get moving and were bored by the regular options. They drove by a studio, or saw a Groupon, or had a co-worker who ballroomed, or heard a song that had "cha cha" in the title, and that was it.
There's probably more reasons that females can claim as their impetus [dance pun] fto start ballroom dancing, but these are the ones that were found by my scientific process of making them up off the top of my head.*
Guys, feeling left out? Don't worry; there's a nifty graph coming for you, too.