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Author Topic: Is Dancesport in decline?  (Read 7437 times)
elisedance
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« Reply #30 on: December 08, 2010, 12:19:01 PM »

I do think we overstate - there are surely many more comps with just ams in than with just pro-ams (usually its either the former or both).  We have a lot of AM comps here - maybe the market is just saturated - but its the trend that is scaring, not of the comps but of the deline in the number of AM couples.
Are you talking about  Canada or Midwest? From where I live, I have 2 pro-am comps within 2 hours drive, and 6-7 within 7 hours drive. There are USA dance events in Chicago and Indianapolis, that makes it 2 events 6-7 hours away.

Also, I haven't seen a pro-am comp which did not have events designated for am-am couples on their schedule, but those events are often poorly attended (like 3-4 couples or even less). My friends, for example, don't bother with them (even for the one that's right in their backyard) because they're still more expensive to enter that USA dance comps, or at least just as expensive (if additional travel expenses are taken into account), but they get more competition at USA dance events.

Then thats quite different from here and at least how it was on the east coast (baltimore area) when I lived there.  But I am fortunate to be in the largest city in the country so that has to be a factor...
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dlgodud
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« Reply #31 on: December 08, 2010, 01:38:03 PM »

How was the OSB this year E?
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elisedance
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« Reply #32 on: December 08, 2010, 03:03:19 PM »

As an event?  Awesome. 

Entries?  There were a lot of AM entries - at the champ levels anyway but I don't know how it compared to 2009 (it was our first time doing AM).  Pro-am seemed about the same...
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ttd
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« Reply #33 on: December 08, 2010, 06:39:02 PM »

I do think we overstate - there are surely many more comps with just ams in than with just pro-ams (usually its either the former or both).  We have a lot of AM comps here - maybe the market is just saturated - but its the trend that is scaring, not of the comps but of the deline in the number of AM couples.
Are you talking about  Canada or Midwest? From where I live, I have 2 pro-am comps within 2 hours drive, and 6-7 within 7 hours drive. There are USA dance events in Chicago and Indianapolis, that makes it 2 events 6-7 hours away.

Also, I haven't seen a pro-am comp which did not have events designated for am-am couples on their schedule, but those events are often poorly attended (like 3-4 couples or even less). My friends, for example, don't bother with them (even for the one that's right in their backyard) because they're still more expensive to enter that USA dance comps, or at least just as expensive (if additional travel expenses are taken into account), but they get more competition at USA dance events.

Then thats quite different from here and at least how it was on the east coast (baltimore area) when I lived there.  But I am fortunate to be in the largest city in the country so that has to be a factor...
Part of it is a function of our countries size - North America is a big spread-out continent, unlike Europe where all events/major ballroom hubs seem to be within a stone throw of each other. But still, if you consider lack of amateur events in the middle of US - I can't speak about Canada, heck, I don't even know what's in the middle up there - it's not very encouraging as far as building up competitive am-am community. Only 2 sort of local events (and to be honest, it's hard to see an event 6-7 hours away as a local event). And as far as am-am events as part of pro-am oriented small-to-mid-size comps, they're not very attractive. You still pay same type of entry fees as pro-am competitors ($30 for a single dance, $60 for a multi-dance without prize money, $80 for a multi-dance with prize money or something like that) and the field is too tiny even to be considered as having revenue potential to the organizers - attracting more pro-am competitors is probably a better business decision for them. I think to build up interest in competitive ballroom, there have to be more smaller but local am-only events, which could help attract beginners. I.e. we had a small local competition (not affiliated with anything) last year. It was part of state olympics - so no pro-pro or pro-am. I wasn't competing in it since I don't have a partner, but some locals did and they reported an OK turn-out of beginners. If there were more events like that happening outside of major hubs on the coasts, I think that would do more for ballroom and eventually it would increase the field size at higher levels.
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QPO
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« Reply #34 on: December 13, 2010, 05:23:06 AM »

You must start them young.....and let them know it is OK to dance. somewhere it has become uncool to do partner dancing. Undecided
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elisedance
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« Reply #35 on: December 13, 2010, 05:43:08 AM »

I think we are going 'back to normal' - the 'Dancing with the Stars' era is ending...
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QPO
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« Reply #36 on: December 14, 2010, 04:05:21 AM »

I think we are going 'back to normal' - the 'Dancing with the Stars' era is ending...

Still very popular here, but I think people may be realisng it does not come without effort but if we can attract a few more via it that would be great.
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elisedance
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« Reply #37 on: December 14, 2010, 05:25:13 AM »

Seems like we lack a nucleating personality or organization here.  someone to publicise and recruit more dancers...
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ttd
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« Reply #38 on: December 14, 2010, 09:41:42 AM »

Isn't that kinda what I was talking about? You need to start recruiting beginners on local level and maybe some of them will advance to fill out competitive fields on the open level. But it has to look doable for them in the beginning <until they're hooked Smiley > - i.e. affordable local events where they don't have to travel far to compete, access to OK instruction (not pricey top-notch, but at least someone who knows what they're doing and who has worked or is working with top coaches and judges) access to practice space, etc. IMO, US doesn't have that sort of thing going outside of the large metro areas on the coasts.
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elisedance
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« Reply #39 on: December 14, 2010, 10:02:21 AM »

Yes, I tihnk we all agree - of course that is long term (which is very sensible) but there is a real danger of loss of quality in the interim thus, some way of rekindling interest in those that have lagged might be necessary too..
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ttd
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« Reply #40 on: December 14, 2010, 12:26:02 PM »

I think you'd have declining field on the top until some new recruits make it there, and obviously the longer it takes for recruitment efforts to get going, the longer the field will decline. Won't be so much of quality loss, save for occasional attempt to dance up in level by couples who are nowhere near it (but that's self-regulating, imo. Nobody wants to look like an idiot, so once below-level couple realizes that, they won't enter high level events until they feel ready, which might never happen, but that's a different subject). I am not sure what can be done in general about those who drop out at high levels. My perception is that people who made it that far, quit dancing and/or competing because life happened to them. Although probably there is a group at that level who had to stop because they lost their partner and can't find a new one and either can't afford pro-am, don't want to do it or live somewhere where it's not available. So those might get back into dancing if they could be paired up with someone in the same situation, but then again you're dealing with people, not slices of bread. Not everyone is willing to wait for the partner to "level up", either, or will automatically accept a partnership just because there are no other choices.
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elisedance
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« Reply #41 on: December 14, 2010, 03:07:44 PM »

Even if you are at the same level its hard to adjust to a new partner after you've worked with someone for years.  Actually, thats where a lot can be said for the body school training - there the dancers learn separately and only come together to dance once in a while.  In that case they could presumably change partners very easily...
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

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ttd
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« Reply #42 on: December 14, 2010, 04:42:20 PM »

Even if you are at the same level its hard to adjust to a new partner after you've worked with someone for years.  Actually, thats where a lot can be said for the body school training - there the dancers learn separately and only come together to dance once in a while.  In that case they could presumably change partners very easily...
Then the unpartnered high-level individuals who lost their partnerships are pretty much a lost cause as far as getting them to compete again, just as those who had life happen to them.
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elisedance
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« Reply #43 on: December 14, 2010, 06:24:11 PM »

Perhaps it really depends on how much they want to continue?
A dance partnership can be wonderful but it can also be quite a committment and investment.  As you say, life may make that a hard prospect to restart...
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Rugby
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« Reply #44 on: December 14, 2010, 08:31:42 PM »

Isn't that kinda what I was talking about? You need to start recruiting beginners on local level and maybe some of them will advance to fill out competitive fields on the open level. But it has to look doable for them in the beginning <until they're hooked Smiley > - i.e. affordable local events where they don't have to travel far to compete, access to OK instruction (not pricey top-notch, but at least someone who knows what they're doing and who has worked or is working with top coaches and judges) access to practice space, etc. IMO, US doesn't have that sort of thing going outside of the large metro areas on the coasts.

Here we don't have that going on either.  Unless you are in Toronto or Montreal you are basically out of luck and overlooked.  It is only a few of us that have made the trek but it comes at a cost.  As you say, until we can get local instruction to get people hooked then chances are nothing will happen.  The problem is if everything is based around one area once that area is tapped out things decline.  New blood is needed but not encouraged so doesn't happen , especailly here where paranoid older Pros rather have the system crash then take the chance on anything new.
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