If any of you have ever tried to learn how to drive a car with a manual transmission, or been in a car where the driver has "popped the clutch"? I'm sure you are familiar with the feeling. You know, that abrupt acceleration, pushing your head back, making you nauseous!
Well, on the dance floor, we want to avoid that as well. The easiest way to avoid an abrupt start is to ease into it; when you begin your steps, the gentlemen should initiate the movement BEFORE the beat actually happens.
In other words, initiate the movement with a slight lean, just before the "1" beat occurs. Adjust the size of the lean according to the size of the step you want to take - bigger lean, bigger step, smaller lean, smaller step.
Ladies will learn to recognize this instinctively, and respond appropriately to your leads.
CAUTION: DO NOT LEAN TOO FAR; YOU DON'T WANT TO FALL OVER :)