disqualifications at ballroom comps

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by Yliander, Jul 20, 2005.

  1. Yliander

    Yliander Member

    Hi guys just wondering what if anything is announced when a couple is disqualifed during a ballroom competition?
     
  2. Laura

    Laura New Member

    In my experience, no. You can tell by looking at the marks, though, if they're posted somewhere.
     
  3. Yliander

    Yliander Member

    thanks - there is currently a lot of discussion on going on here about if disqualifications should be announced and if so how much information given.

    Marks aren't posted so if there is no announcement then no-one would know.

    There was one disqualification and the announcement was just that there was a disqualification no explanation of which category, what rule or which couple. Which has led to a lot of speculation
     
  4. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I wonder if this happened to me...while my intructor and I didn't even place in the newcomer waltz...we won the intermediate bronze waltz and the waltz portion of the scholarship...I always figured that as a newcomer maybe I was just over looked at first, but I wonder now if some part of our routine wasn't kosher for that level...my instructor is wonderful and I can't imagine him making that sort of error...I also wonder if there was just the possibility that it didn't look believable that I was a newcomer(ego slightly out of balance)...it just seemed odd...probably overthinking it....
     
  5. wyllo

    wyllo New Member

    In my experience a couple is told if they are disqualified. Often if the problem occurs before the final the couple is warned and given a chance (or two or three) to correct the problem - especially if they are dancing out of syllabus. I've never heard of disqualifications being announced and don't really like the idea of doing it. Not a big fan of public scoldings - I'd think a simple disqualification is enough, IMO.
     
  6. Laura

    Laura New Member

    My experience is simillar to wyllo's: the couple is told, but there's not a big announcement about it to the public.

    I wouldn't get too bent out of shape about not winning the newcomer waltz. Did you have the exact same judging panel each time? Were you dancing against the exact same people each time? Did you dance each time identically or were you tight or nervous for that first dance? There's several explanations that don't involve disqualification.
     
  7. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    The way I see it, not announcing the action that has been taken just makes the situation seem even more abitrary and unfair. The point isn't to punish the small fraction of infractions that officials happen to see, but rather to remind everyone they didn't see that there is a rule book which they should be making a personal effort to adhere to.

    Because public announcement are rare, there's an almost total lack of verifiable "case law" to indicate how various situations will be handled, if they are being handled consistently, etc. Without a formal public record, we're left with an informal one - water cooler and internet rumors.
     
  8. wyllo

    wyllo New Member

    Hmm, good point. I'm not against it being in the official record and have seen couples with a DQ by their name instead of judge's marks. I just don't like singling couples out -- I'm don't like the idea of scaring off new dancers that maybe have never heard of a syllabus, let alone know which steps are bronze. I do think it is a good idea to make a general announcement reminding couples that the syllabus will be enforced and giving them a contact person to speak with if they don't know what it means.
     
  9. Laura

    Laura New Member

    But don't these students have someone teaching them, someone whose job it is to know better? There's no excuse for someone who is teaching a beginning competitor to not know things like this.
     
  10. wyllo

    wyllo New Member

    Well, yes, but it isn't the student's fault if the teacher doesn't get their act together. Also, not everyone who competes newcomer/bronze comes from a competitive background. I did my first competition coming from a purely social background and had never heard of a syllabus -- I look back at that and cringe at my lack of knowledge :oops: but we all start somewhere and I think we should be extra gentle with newbies.
     
  11. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I am certain my instructor would know what was appropriate or not, and he does the same routines with all of us at the same level....it is probably as you said, some other factor....however it is puzzling to me because the judges were the same for the first two levels although not for the scholarship....and on the tape...it appears clear to me that the first waltz was the best and I do think I have been instructed well enough to know what to look for in that regard....it is not a big deal just mildly perplexing and the topic of the thread got me to wondering about it...I am pretty happy with the results and have full confidence in my instructor
     
  12. Porfirio Landeros

    Porfirio Landeros New Member

    I don't know the specifics of the competition you were at, but there are several ways you could be disqualified in a newcomer situation.

    One is that if you were dancing in Newcomer, Bronze, and Scholarship, this can be perceived as a "foul" because you should only be competing in 2 consecutive levels, and if you're going to do Bronze and Scholarship, you're too good for newcomer.

    I witnessed a Latin couple biting off more than they could chew... they won all 3 of the levels the entered, and what happened was the official came over and quietly asked them which of the two consecutive alwards they would like to keep, and then they didn't get called out for the one that they chose to drop. It was very civil, and they didn't want to embarrass the dancers, but in the back of my mind I was thinking, "Their coach and/or they should have known better."

    Another way you could have been disqualified from Newcomer is that some comps have a tight time-line definition for newcomer, like, you can only have been taking lessons for 3 months. This doesn't matter if your lessons were social or classes-only. So if it was generally known that you've been a social dancer for say 1 year, and the criteria was less than 3 mo's, they'd give you the boot from the category.

    Anyway, I'm sure you could answer back to all of these details, but the point really is there's a lot ways to define newcomer, and either way, you should have been made aware if you were disqualified in any case.

    At least you did well in the higher levels :)
     
  13. Laura

    Laura New Member

    I agree with this, and that is why I think that "quiet" disqualifications are better when it comes to syllabus issues. Now for other things, like costume violations, high sticking*, and icing* a more public announcement might make sense for the deterrant purposes that Chris mentions.

    * (These are hockey terms, I'm sort of making a joke here, it sounded funnier than saying "really bad sportsmanship." :) )
     
  14. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    If by "didn't even place" you mean you weren't called back to the final, another possibility is that the numbers were misread. I can recall a cases where a number has clearly not been read (in the opinion of both members of the couple plus a friend or two) yet when the head table is asked, it turns out they were were on the recall list. Often they then go and do quite well - because it's the cases where a couple is really expected to get a recall that make sense to ask about.

    Also this is one reason why a disqualification should be implemented on top of the judges marks, not replacing them, so that one situation doesn't get mistaken for another.

    On the publicity thing, an additional argument is that a public record of what happened and how it was handled provides additional protection for the dancers against false accusations or mistaken interpretations - if it's in the record, it's far easier to challenge after the fact by collecting contrary evidence than if it is limited to an informal little conference in the corner.

    In terms of situations where one might argue it's the teacher's fault not the students, we might consider how bad advice on what is legal compares to bad advice on how to dance. Conceptually, bad dancing advice will be visible to all in low placements for that teacher's students. Shouldn't the consequences of bad syllabus advice be equally visible for perspective students to see?

    I guess what I'm hoping is that by making the consequences clearer, we can have violations become an extreme rarity.
     
  15. Alskling

    Alskling Member

    Here's a slightly different situation: at last year's Nationals, a couple was disqualified after their event was completed, not because of a syllabus infraction (it was an open event), but because they had failed to meet the Regionals qualification requirement, and lied about it. They were stripped of their placing and banned from competition for a number of months. To my knowledge, the disqualification and punishment were never publicly announced (though word trickled around through the grapevine, as it tends to do). The only indication that this ever happened was in a PDF file of the results on the usabda.org site, where the couple's name was lined out with a note that they had been disqualified.

    What do people think in this case? Should the infraction and punishment be made public in a situation like this?
     
  16. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    I'd go as far as to suggest that it's especially the silly, unpopular rules which require consistent and open handling - otherwise, case by case enforcement gives the impression of being arbitrary.
     
  17. cornutt

    cornutt Well-Known Member

    If it's pro-am, though, it's the instructor's job to keep things under control. It's especially inexcusable when the instructor is leading. But sometimes instructors get carried away. The only DQ I've ever seen in my very limited comp experience was the case of a pro male leader and an amateur female follower. They danced one event and the pro was warned afterwards about dancing out of syllabus. The next heat, they did it again, and they were disqualified. I talked to the pro afterwards and he said, "Yeah, she's a very fast learner, and I just lost my head." My experience is that, when the MC makes an announcement about dancing out of syllabus after a heat, it is usually because a judge noticed someone doing it in that heat. The announcement is a shot across the bow, without naming names.

    The reason why you want to enforce a rule like that, even with newcomers, is to shut down the lamers who enter events way below their level for cheap thrills. Folks, there is no honor in a silver-level dancer beating a bunch of three-month newcomers. We all know that, yet you'd be surprised how many people will do it if they aren't restrained. Like cheaters in a jack-and-jill contest (don't even get me started on that topic), some people just have no shame. The rules look stupid, but you have to have them to keep a few people from ruining it for everyone else.
     
  18. Laura

    Laura New Member

    Heh. I know the situation. On the one hand it would have been terribly embarassing to the people involved, but on the other hand what is better: an official statement outlining the findings of the officials who looked into the situation and found out exactly what happened, or the story being passed around via "telephone" with the inevitable errors of transmission.

    There's a BIG difference between what these people did and some newbie bronze-level student accidentally dancing a couple of silver steps in their routines.
     
  19. smoozer

    smoozer Member

    I for one see nothing wrong with announcing DQ's or rules infractions at the time of the event. Transperancy is important. It would also raise awareness as to the fact that there are rules to be followed. Dancesport is the only sport i am aware of that does not openly acknowledge infractions of the rules. In fact golfers will bring their infractions to the attention of officials. Athletes in other sports manage to survive any humiliation that occurs from being called for a foul. I imagine that dancers would manage.
     
  20. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    just for clarity... and then I think I can stop beating this dead horse to death...I have only been dancing with my insrctor for six months and this was my first comp...entering the scholarship was just a lark and I never even hoped to place...but if that qualifies as entering at three levels I can see how that might be an issue...the only silverish move we do is on one particular turn...but I will take not placing in newcomer on my first comp and winning waltz over some very seasoned bronze dancers in the scholarship anyday...just sort of puzzled by how it happened...there ends my overanalysis and thank you all for the feedback
     

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