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How to Perfect Your Pageant Walk

17, March 2016

Nothing is more important to your overall pageant score than perfecting your pageant walk and mastering your pageant pose. I have seen girls with perfect swimsuit bodies score average while girls with average bodies have score perfectly. Likewise I've seen girls with custom pageant gowns that cost thousands of dollars score less than the girl who wore a prom dress.

You will score higher when you learn to walk better.

With the right pageant walk the confidence that you show on stage will be crown worthy but without this knowledge at best you will not stand out and at worst you will appear awkward on stage, which can make your judges feel awkward for you. We call this "second hand embarrassment."

Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray during her famous "lava walk" at Miss Universe 2018. Photo: Miss Universe Organization

Perfecting Your Pageant Walk

Pageant Walking Coaches

There are some areas of pageantry that you can figure out on your own. Walking and Posing is NOT one of them. You NEED an expert who can watch you and help you discover those weird pauses and hesitations, then point you to a method that will help you overcome those hiccups. Whatever the cost of hiring a walking coach the return on investment will be worth it. Click Here to discover our recommended list of coaches you can help you master your pageant walk.

Pageant Walk 101

This is a really in-depth video that pageant coach, Lu Sierra, put together. Here she covers how to walk in swimsuit, in evening gown and how to stand throughout the pageant.

How to Walk in Pageant Evening Gown - Evening Gown Elegance

The Evening Gown competition is, in theory, simpler than the swimsuit round. However, any beauty queen knows there is so much more to consider during the evening gown competition than meets the eye. Making sure your dress flows, preventing heels getting caught in dresses, angles for posing...all this while trying to look elegant and glamorous! Evening gown is generally a slower, more graceful round than swimsuit. I always like to imagine myself on the red carpet at the Oscars, ensuring I make eye contact with all the judges as if they were the photographers.

I make sure I show the dress off but remember that it’s me the judges are really looking at. I also consider which dress I’m wearing when practicing my walk – some of my dresses have a train which means I need to adjust my turning circle, others don’t. This round is where Miss USA and Miss America are a little more similar – whilst Miss USA’s evening gown competitions have been a bit more about sex appeal, the elegance is still very much at the forefront. I personally think that, so long as your walk is fluid and elegant, you shouldn’t need to try to adjust it based on which system. Again, it also comes down to how you feel comfortable walking.

Here is a video that we put together to help you learn how to walk in evening gown. We hired a pageant coach to instruct a real pageant girl who has never taken a pageant walking lesson before on how to walk during the pageant evening gown competition. Watch the video below as she coaches Faith how to walk in evening gown.

How to Walk in Pageant Swimsuit - “Swimsuit Swagger” 

When you’re competing in a swimsuit competition, you are out there on stage trying to prove you lead a fit and healthy lifestyle and have confidence and sass. There’s no way you can do that, regardless of whether your figure is stunning or not, if your walk isn’t great. The most important thing to remember in a swimsuit walk is posture – walking tall with your shoulders up and back will make you look taller and leaner.

Your walk will usually be more upbeat, but how much you move your hips is down to not only which system you are in, but your own personal preference. If you don’t feel comfortable swinging your hips like the Miss USA girls, don’t try it, even if you are competing in Miss USA competitions. There’s nothing worse than looking awkward. Likewise, if you’re a USA girl competing in the America system and you feel confident sashaying your hips, don’t try too hard to tone it down because it just looks forced and restrained.

In this video you'll discover how to master you pageant walk during swimsuit. In a similar fashion as the above we hired a pageant coach to help Faith, a real pageant girl who has never taken a pageant walking lesson before, on how to walk in her swimsuit.


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