Salsa movements originate from the Cuban Son dancing of the 1920s, and more specifically through the beat of Son Montuno with strong influences from the dance of Danzon, Mambo, Guaguanco and other Afro-Cuban folkloric dancing. Today's Salsa dancing is a rich blend of Latin-American and Western influences. Other dance styles that have influenced today's Salsa include Western and Ballroom dancing. Salsa traces a 90-year history in which there are numerous evolutionary paths, sometimes split due to political and social influences. As a result, today there are various distinct styles of Salsa dancing, namely Cuban ("Casino"), New York Style ("Mambo on 2"), Los Angeles Style ("On 1"), Colombian Salsa ("Cali-Style") and Miami-Style Salsa.
Salsa is typically a partner dance, although there are recognized solo forms, pole dancing (suelta) and Rueda de Casino, where groups of couples exchange partners in a circle. Salsa can be improvised or performed with a set routine, choreography and freestyle.