Country Tapping Techniques: Enhance Your Fingerstyle Guitar Skills

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Country tapping is a technique used in country dancing that involves making a rhythmic tapping sound with your footwear, adding an extra layer of percussion to the music. This technique is often used in line dancing and other forms of country dancing, and it can add a lot of energy and fun to your dancing. In this blog post, we’ll explore the history of country tapping, the basic technique for doing it, and some variations you can try to add your own personal style to your country dancing.

The History of Country Tapping

Country tapping has its roots in the traditional music and dance of the Appalachian region of the United States. In the early days of country music, dancers would often tap their feet along with the music as a way of keeping time and adding to the overall rhythm of the dance. This style of dancing was particularly popular in the 1920s and 1930s, when country music was first gaining popularity.

As country music evolved over the years, so too did country tapping. Today, it is an essential part of many different forms of country dancing, including line dancing, partner dancing, and square dancing. In fact, country tapping is so popular that it has even been incorporated into some forms of modern dance and stage performance.

The Basic Technique of Country Tapping

The basic technique of country tapping is relatively simple. To start, you’ll need a pair of shoes with a hard sole, such as cowboy boots or tap shoes. This will allow you to make a clear, distinct tapping sound as you dance.

Next, you’ll need to find the right rhythm for your tapping. In most cases, you’ll want to tap your foot on the first and third beats of the measure, while keeping time with the music on the second and fourth beats. This will create a strong, steady rhythm that will help to drive the dance forward.

To practice your tapping, start by standing in place and tapping your foot on the ground. Focus on making a clear, distinct sound with each tap, and try to keep time with the music. Once you feel comfortable with this basic technique, you can start to incorporate it into your country dancing.

Variations on Country Tapping

There are many different variations on country tapping, and you can experiment with different rhythms, sounds, and movements to find the style that works best for you. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Shuffle Tapping

Shuffle tapping is a variation on country tapping that involves sliding your foot along the ground as you tap. This can create a smooth, flowing sound that is perfect for slower, more relaxed dances.

Double Tapping

Double tapping is a more advanced technique that involves tapping your foot twice in quick succession. This can create a rapid-fire rhythm that is perfect for fast-paced, high-energy dances.

Toe Tapping

Toe tapping is a variation on country tapping that involves tapping your toe on the ground instead of your heel. This can create a lighter, more playful sound that is perfect for upbeat, lively dances.

Stamp Tapping

Stamp tapping is a variation on country tapping that involves stomping your foot on the ground instead of tapping it. This can create a loud, powerful sound that is perfect for making a big impression on the dance floor.

Tips for Improving Your Country Tapping

If you’re new to country tapping, here are a few tips to help you improve your technique:

Practice Regularly

Like any skill, the more you practice country tapping, the better you will become. Try to set aside some time each day to practice your tapping, even if it’s just for a few minutes.

Listen to the Music

Country tapping is all about keeping time with the music, so it’s important to listen carefully to the rhythm and melody of the song you’re dancing to. This will help you to find the right rhythm for your tapping and create a smooth, seamless flow.

Experiment with Different Variations

Don’t be afraid to try out different variations on country tapping. Experimenting with different rhythms, sounds, and movements can help you to find the style that works best for you, and it can also add a lot of variety and interest to your dancing.

Looking to learn more about country guitar techniques? Check out our articles on alt country tunings, country guitar techniques, session guitarists techniques, time signatures in country music, and bending techniques in country music for a deep dive into the world of country tapping techniques!


Country tapping is a fun, energetic technique that can add a lot of excitement and style to your country dancing. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced dancer, there’s always something new to learn and explore with country tapping. So why not give it a try and see where it takes you? With a little practice and experimentation, you’re sure to find a style that suits you and adds a new dimension to your dancing.

About the author

Hi there! I’m Jack Little – an avid country music fan with tons of live country performances in the past. I used to play banjo in a country band with my best friend John Peters, who’s a true country harmonica master. Those were great years and I’m still mastering new banjo playing techniques, writing my own country songs and lyrics, and collecting banjos!

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