How you know you're ready to start competing at the next level?

Hey everyone. First time and first post here on DF. Started ballroom recently and totally fell in love with it. I'm glad I found a place where I can still be surrounded by ballroom when I'm not out dancing it. :)

Anyway, generally speaking, what are some indications that a couple is ready to start competing at the next level? In other words, how does a couple know if they're ready to move up? For context, I'm a collegiate dancer in the US (East Coast-based) and have just started working through the syllabus in all four styles. Thanks!


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If there's a point system, move up when you point out. However, it's generally considered good sportsmanship to move up before that, when you are consistently placing highly in your level.


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Since you can compete at two adjacent levels, there are really two questions: when to add the next higher one, and when to stop the current one. There are various ways to do it; here's one. You can start competing at the next higher one (silver, presumably) whenever you want, depending on your tolerance for low placements, but I wouldn't add silver steps right away; keep working on improving technique in the bronze steps. Once you're consistently placing in the middle of the pack in bronze, you can start adding in silver steps to the routines you compete in silver, assuming your teacher approves (and assuming you can keep track of the different routines). Once you're consistently placing toward the top of bronze and the middle of the pack in silver, drop bronze and focus on silver for a while. And repeat.
Thanks for the replies so far. We don't really have a coach which is why I'm here asking this on DF :( I think we'll be able to find one soon-ish though.


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somewhere around 1-10 years per syllabus level, depending on whether you're dancing 1 hr per style a week, or 10 hrs per style a week, and a few dozen other factors...:cool:


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Since some organizations are only pretending to have a point system, I'd say once you start consistently placing first or second in whatever division you're dancing.

I'd say if you place a mix of 1-2 in your latest 3-4 comps, it's definitely time to move up.
There is no point system where I compete so I go off of two things:

1) When coach says to move up, move up.

2) Consistently placing in the top 3 in sizeable competitions (20+ competitors in the event) in multiple different parts of the country. It's time to move up.


Well-Known Member
All the above! Find a coach. Review your placement consistencies as well as your recalls in the competitions you’ve entered, factor in the couples you actually competed against in your group/category.

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