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do amish dance

Do the Amish Dance?

The Amish are an ethnoreligious group known for their avoidance of modern technology and the luxuries of the current world. 

However, that statement doesn’t give us the clearest picture of what the Amish are and aren't allowed to do. 

If you’ve ever had burning questions about the Amish, you’ve likely wondered “Can the Amish use mirrors?” or “Do the Amish Dance?”. 

Well, the answers to all your pressing questions are a little nuanced, but rest assured there are reasons and historical context behind each of them. 

What this article covers:

Are Amish People Allowed to Dance?

Dancing isn’t forbidden in Amish culture, it’s simply something they don’t do. In Amish communities, dancing and listening to recorded lively music is seen as a worldly activity.

The Amish don’t partake in any form of dance in their religion because dancing can be viewed as immodest and prideful. It can also potentially lead to impropriety if men and women are encouraged to dance together.

are amish people allowed to dance

While some outsiders may think this mentality is boring, the Amish quite enjoy their way of life.   

The Amish religion and faith allow the Amish to listen to music, but not in the same sense outsiders would. 

Most of the music they find enjoyable and entertaining consists of slow religious hymns and folk songs, not exactly the type of music you’d find yourself on the dancefloor for. 

And just because they don’t listen to lively music doesn't mean they don't find music enjoyable. Music is a big part of the Amish way of life, their hymns and folk songs play a big part in many of their church and family occasions. 

Amish gatherings, weddings or even Amish games don't have any form of dance or lively music. The only music they listen to and enjoy listening to are the hymns they sing in their communities.

amish dance

Much of this music consists of church hymns and folk songs made without instruments or recorded with technological audio equipment. The only way to enjoy Amish music is to catch it live. 

To many outsiders, this may seem dull and leave people wondering: “Well what do Amish do for fun?” to the Amish, folk songs and hymns are quite enjoyable, and they’d choose it over having a radio every time. 

Amish Music

Just as we may enjoy listening to music on our phones or singing the latest hits as we do the dishes, the Amish listen to music made within their communities. 

Amish music consists of hymns and folk songs sung without the help of instruments. The Amish don’t play any instruments and simply enjoy singing their praises.

do the amish dance

Many people often try to find out whether the Amish make instruments of their own or believe they make music using some kind of traditional instrument. 

This leads many people to want authentic Amish instruments, unfortunately, this isn’t the case, and the only authentic homemade Amish items you’ll find are household items. 

Many Amish communities sell things like wicker laundry baskets, picnic baskets, bread boxes or even pie carriers. Some communities even sell home remedies and medicines, but no instruments.

As far as instruments go, the only thing used to make music is vocal cords. The music produced in Amish communities is not suitable for dancing. Much of their music is slow and focuses on praise and worship.

do amish people dance

Amish Music Rules

Like many things in Amish communities, music and dancing have rules to abide by. While listening to live music and dancing may not necessarily be forbidden in the Amish way of life, it’s not permitted in many communities. 

Dancing isn’t a modest activity and could lead to people feeling prideful over their ability to dance better than others this is one of the leading reasons that Amish don't do it. 

Many modern conveniences and activities are looked down upon for this reason, which also explains the rules regarding recorded music. 

Although the Amish listen to music in their communities, if you want to listen to music, you either hear it from others in the community or sing it yourself. 

amish people dance


So as puzzling as it may be to outsiders, the Amish don’t dance. That being said, they don’t have any problems omitting the activity from their lives. 

Make no mistake, though. Just because they’re not getting down on the dancefloor, or gyrating wildly to whoever owns the Top 10 this month, it doesn’t mean the Amish don’t have fun. 

They live humble and modest lives, and dancing is seen as a worldly and prideful activity, which is why you’re unlikely to see the Amish dance; not even at their wedding. 

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