Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary


When dances are categorized by tempo, Reels are the most common form of Scottish Country Dance. They are performed mostly to 4/4 tempo music. A few are in 2/4 tempo (with the same number of bars rather than crochets per minute) though only the experienced musician would be aware of the difference.

Note that the presence of the word, Reel, in a dance title does not necessarily mean that it is danced to the Reel tempo; for example, The Marchioness of Blandford's Reel is a Jig and Miss Gibson's Reel is a Strathspey.

For information on the various forms of Reel as Figures in Scottish Country Dancing, select Figures on the side navigation bar and then either Reel or the more specific form at the bottom of the page.

The term, Reeling, is often used to refer to the informal Scottish Country Dancing which one is likely to encounter at a Ceilidh dancing event.

Here are examples of those Scottish Country Dances for which we have instructions on this site and in which the term, Reels, either appears explicitly or is implied; note that for a common term these will be a small selection; for a rare term, these may be all that exist:

Anniversary Reel (Muir)
Floozie In The Jacuzzi
Highland Rambler
Miss Johnstone Of Ardrossan
Music Makars
Nottingham Lace
Peat Fire Flame
Polharrow Burn
Reel Of The Royal Scots
Virginia Reel

Further examples of Scottish Country Dances which are listed as Reels may be found in these Alternative Dance Selections -
2 Couple Reels
3 Couple Reels
5 Couple Reels
6 Couple Reels

Dance Video Clip Which Demonstrates Reels

Reels Video Clip

Links To Pages Related To 'Types Of Dance'

Types Of Dance