Is ballroom dancing a sport or is it just another form of art?
There is a very fine line between the two, but the world of ballroom dancing comfortably sways between being an art and a sport.
Amongst the long list of sports known to man, it might be surprising for a lot of individuals to come across dancing in this list.
Just syncing your body movements with music to make it look aesthetically pleasing—that’s what dancing is after all.
As you continue to read, you will figure out how ballroom dancing takes it a step further and if it really can be considered a sport.
What Is The Meaning of Ballroom?
The word “ball“, in the term ballroom, is derived from the Latin word “ballare” which means to dance. There are 12 types of ballroom dancing such as Tango, Waltz, Cha-cha, and Foxtrot.
Ballroom dancing basically refers to a partner dance in which two people coordinate their movements with each other and with the rhythm.
Many people still widely watch it on stage, television, and film to appreciate it.
Is Ballroom Dancing a Sport?
You might find it strange to consider ballroom dancing a sport but guess what?
It really has all the attributes needed to regard it as one.
The following points will help us to prove to you how our proclamation of ballroom dancing as a sport is indeed valid.
1. Staying Fit
Training hard, eating healthy, and building stamina—that’s what athletes do, right? Dancers might not necessarily have the build of a boxing champion but staying fit is one of the key goals of every dancer.
Their eating habits are altered to help them have a lean body which at the same time can endure long hours of practice. Dancers have to be very good at maintaining their weight charts since that helps them to know their momentum and balance better.
It is also imperative for every ballroom dancer to have outstanding stamina just like any other sports players. They have to go through long hours of practice and even longer hours of dancing shows. Those are one of the reasons they are excellent at aerobic fitness.
2. Display of Skills
Can you expect Lebron James to be good at football? Or can you ask Roger Federer to play rugby in a very professional way? Certainly not.
Each of these two players excels at a particular set of skills. Similarly, that is the case with the talent of ballroom dancing. There is so much history associated with ballroom dancing that the skills have undergone alterations widely over time.
So to learn dancing, you have first to learn the basic skills that are needed to become an expert.
3. Joining Competitions
If you ever run into a ballroom dancing competition, it will most probably be known as DanceSport. This term widely replaces competitive ballroom dancing.
Ballroom dancing is highly competitive since it can be a measure of how brilliant you are at acquiring a specific set of skills.
There are proper classes where you can train for up to 15 hours a week. There are also teams and rankings. World Dance Council (WDC) holds world championships that cater to ballroom dancers.
Some dancers come from 20 countries regularly to these competitions to grace the audience with their supreme talent, bursting with art.
Ballroom dancers make use of muscles that you might not even know exist: glutes, calf muscles, rear deltoids, rhomboids, etc. As these muscles are used, precise movement is necessary to bring out the required step.
Failure in moving the desired muscle part in a certain way does not only result in an awful move but sometimes in an injury, too.
Yes, you read it right. Even ballroom dancers are prone to injury! It is very common to rupture your Achilles’ tendon. Many dancers report pulled muscles, too.
Additionally, female ballroom dancers have numerous cases of sprained ankles and blistered toes due to wearing high heels.
So you might find it absurd, but it is surely tough to carry on with your steps and make it look smooth after being stepped on by stiletto heels. The same way it is tough to get back up, after falling and score a goal!
5. Attracting an Audience
Having the stands full of people is definitely the highlight of any sporting event; the same goes for ballroom dancing.
As pleasing as it is to dance, it is even more pleasing to look at dancers skillfully move their bodies to the sweet sound of music.
Going to ballroom dance shows is super therapeutic for many people. Most times, a lot of sketches and theater shows have a scene which is solely for the dance.
Many restaurants also have a pair of dancers who exhibit a display of Tango while you enjoy your food. Dance shows are also popular on television.
If you think ballroom dancing is just about practicing a few dance moves here and there, walking up and repeating it, then you might be wrong.
There are a particular set of rules on the basis of which ballroom competitions are judged by scorekeepers.
The rules include maintaining body posture, poise, expression, and even timing! While marking dancers, many judges also take a look at your foot and leg actions.
Currently, ballroom dancing is not on the list of sports at the Olympics. However, dancers have put in many efforts to turn this around. One of which includes DanceSport, a competition where ballroom dancers come together to contest and celebrate this sport.
That being said, the answer to the question “Is ballroom dancing a sport?” is a little complex. By crossing art and sport, you will end up with the incredibly phenomenal idea of ballroom dancing.
To become an expert at it, you have to do everything that you would possibly have to do for excelling at any other sport.
Hence, it might not be wrong after all to consider ballroom dancing a sport. Since at the end of the day, it fulfills all the compulsory requirements needed to grant it the validation of being a sport.
Resource: Ballroom Dance Planet