Is it rude to tell someone how to improve at something without them asking?

For example at dance class if a girl is dancing and she does a move wrong or something, would it be rude to help her by teaching her how to do it the right way without her asking?
Or would it only be acceptable if she specifically asked for help?


Most Helpful Guy

  • It depends on a few factors. First of all: do you actually know about dancing. I'm not going to ask you the question here because I don't want to put you on the spot and potentially make you lie. But I'm just gonna say this: can you comfortably and honestly say about yourself that you know a thing or two about dancing? Or are you just kinda full of yourself when it comes to the topic? It's important to be honest to yourself because this decides whether the person will accept or reject your correction. We generally like to be corrected by people who are knowledgable. If I said something like "yo has misteyk at yo kewestion!" you'd probably not be interested to hear my correction because you wouldn't think I was actually in the position to judge the mistake correctly (and there's nothing more annoying than being corrected by people who don't know what they're talking about).
    Now, if you're actually knowledgable about dancing, it also depends on HOW you say it. In fact, this is true for so many other things in life. Often, content is only secondary. It's HOW you say things that really matters. For example in fights with family members or a boyfriend/girlfriend, tensions often arise not because of what people say to each other but how they say it (intonation, body language, pitch, volume, word choice etc.). If you say something like "Ey, you! What the hell was that supposed to be? Omg can't you even do a simple dance move? Here, I'll show you how to do it right!" it comes across as very arrogant and condescending. You don't want that. What you want when you correct people is to sound humble. You want to appear smart but at the same time hold back your knowledge a bit and only come forward with it when the other person is okay with it. One good way to do this is to ask whether you can correct them. Start the conversation/correction with a question such as "Excuse me, I noticed that there might be a way you could improve your dance move a little bit. Would you care to let me try and show you?"
    The exact wording depends on things such as gender and culture. For example I'm from Switzerland and in Switzerland we like to talk very indirectly and you a lot of words such as "might", "possibly" etc. kind of like Brits. However, in this situation that kind of "smoothing down" your question can help a lot. It makes you appear humble and careful rather than aggressive. Also notice that I said "improve", so the focus is not on correction but on making it EVEN better.


Most Helpful Girl

  • Depends. But usually just stay quiet. All of us could improve somewhere, the world would never shut up if we all pointed those things out.


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What Guys Said 1

  • if the person is doing it so wrongly that there is great potential of them injuring themselves, then its not rude, you're just looking out for them. if its just "different", then maybe its their own style.


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