The 'Time Warp' comes from the musical 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show', which is still frequently performed almost 40 years later! It's a crazy and easy dance, with most of the instructions being sung out loud. Make it even more fun by dressing up once you've mastered the dance moves.
Method 1 of 2: Dancing the Time Warp
Step 1. Jump left
Place your legs close together, with your feet facing forward or slightly apart. Jump with both feet off the ground and land slightly to the left. Keep looking in the same direction during this jump.
If you want to make the jump more exciting, wiggle your hands in the air as you jump, or move up and down in time after you land
Step 2. Step to the right (four times)
Keep your left foot on the floor and continue facing the same direction during this part of the dance. Move your right foot far to the right, then bring your legs back together. Usually the dancers repeat this movement four times, touching the ground only with their toes the first three times. On the fourth time you plant your foot on the ground, and you end up standing with your legs apart.
If you want, move your hands out and back in at the same time as your feet
Step 3. Place your hands on your hips
Then raise your hands above your head and make an exaggerated wiggling motion back toward your hips.
Step 4. Push Your Knees Together
Stand still for a moment, long enough for someone to sing 'bring your knees in…'. When "…tight" follows, quickly bring your knees together without moving your feet. Keep your hands on your hips and bend your hips if you are about to lose your balance.
Don't worry too much about the timing of this move while you're practicing. It's easier to get the timing right with the music playing, or when you're practicing in sync with other people
Step 5. Do the Pelvic Thrust twice
Push your butt back, then thrust your hips and pelvis forward suddenly. Lean your legs forward and your head and shoulders back slightly as you push, to make it a little more exaggerated. Repeat this movement a second time.
Keep your hands on your hips
Step 6. Swing Your Hips
This isn't part of the lyrics, but it's still one of the dance moves. Keep your hands on your hips and rotate your hips and pelvis in a circle. You can do this in one smooth motion, like spinning a hula hoop, or wiggle as you spin to the beat of the song.
When you listen to the song, do this move on the lyrics: 'that really drives you insa-a-ane'
Step 7. Finish by jumping back and forth and waving your hands to the beat of the music
Jump in place and simultaneously rotate 90º to the right so that you are facing where your right arm was before. Jump a second time and turn 180º so that you turn completely and face the other way. Move your arms and legs in and out of time as the chorus ends.
- When you dance to the song, time it so that you do the first jump during 'Let's do' and the second jump during 'the Time Warp' and the arm movements during 'Again'.
- You can come up with your own dance moves for this part of the song, as there are no specific instructions. You could even just wave your arms and jump around during this part.
Step 8. Fall to the ground
At the end of the song, after you've done the Time Warp on all three choruses, you'll fall dramatically to the floor as the music fades away.
Method 2 of 2: Dressing up for the dance
Step 1. Wear a Halloween costume
From zombies to princesses, Halloween costumes fit right in with the Time Warp. The flashier and crazier, the better -- whether you opt for a profusion of pink ruffles and glitter, or a skull face.
Step 2. Dress in glitter and sequins
Columbia, one of the dancing characters from the Rocky Horror movie version, has the flashiest costume of them all. Cover yourself in gold or rainbow sequins and glittery makeup to imitate her. You get bonus points if you wear a glittering top hat and fishnet stockings, or make up your eyebrows heavily.
Step 3. Dress up in one of the simpler costumes from the show
The characters Janet and Brad are the calm, 'normal' people who are caught between a group of strange people, which means that their costumes are usually easier to imitate. Dress like Janet by wearing a light pink dress and white sweater, plus a sun hat. Dress like Brad in "hipster" clothes, such as a tucked-in shirt, khaki pants, and scrunched back hair.
Step #4. When going to a Rocky Horror show, avoid streaks
On many performances of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, where the Time Warp dance comes from, you may be ridiculed for wearing stripes. This is believed to refer to a scene in the movie when someone wearing a striped shirt accidentally came into the picture, but it has become a tradition in its own right.
- When you go to a performance of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, the audience almost always joins in the Time Warp dance.
- Try dancing to this clip from the Rocky Horror Picture Show movie, or to this audio track from the song, when the chorus kicks off with "Jump to the left!"