The Schuhplattler is a style of dancing that originated in the mountains of southern Germany, Austria and northern Italy more than a thousand years ago. In the Schuhplattler, the dancers stomp, clap and strike the soles of their shoes (Schuhe), thighs and knees with their hands held flat (platt). There are more than 150 basic Schuhplattlers, as well as marches and acrobatic feats that are often interspersed with the basic dance in performance.
Most Schuhplattler groups in Europe and America have a children's component, but there are also a growing number of Schuhplattler clubs just for kids. The dance is uniquely suited to the interests and abilities of young people, with its colorful costumes and its bouncing, leaping, stamping and choreographed horseplay to lively music in three-quarter time.