Shag is a form of dance that is believed to have originated in the Carolinas in the 1920's and 30's. It is characterised by dancing to medium tempo and faster songs alike by increasing or decreasing the movements. The term Shag is an umbrella term that used to denote many different styles of dance, commonly known referred to as Jitterbug dances. Part of the Jitterbug was also the more commonly danced Lindy Hop, the Jive, and East Coast Swing.
When the popularity of Shag increased, it spread to America in the 30's. Today Shag and Collegiate Shag are terms often used interchangeably, to refer to a style of dance that was popular among the college students during the 30's and 40's. Collegiate Shag is the only style of Shag that is believed to be a direct descendant of the original Shag dance, as opposed to Carolina Shag and St. Louis Shag.
Collegiate Shag is a partnered dance that is highly energetic, extremely fun, and social. It is danced to high tempo songs (180 bpm+), as opposed to the more well-known Lindy Hop, which is commonly danced to slower songs. By dancing Shag you are dancing, but working out at the same time! But beware, once you have been bitten by the Jitterbug there is a very real possibility that you will become addicted! Below are a few videos to give you an idea of what Collegiate Shag looks like.