Collegiate Competition Stereotypes

stash

Well-Known Member
It's also possible that the ladies have been taught a one-size-fits-all left hand position, rather than a set of options depending on relative heights and arm lengths. When I first started dancing with DH, I had to make a significant change to my hand position -- even when he doesn't droop, there is no way for me to prevent a gap between our arms if I put my hand where I used to think it had to be.
I know this is a battle that I'm constantly struggling with--and for me it stems from the concern of being heavy on the man's arm. I also notice it happens more when we do a "stressful" part of our choreography. -_-
 

bia

Well-Known Member
And I am talking about a vertical gap in case that wasn't clear, not a horizontal space between the angled elbows. Given the offset position and the long elegant arms of many ladies, that is often unavoidable.
Yeah, that's what I thought you meant. To be clearer about my hand position comment -- for myself personally, I think it has mostly to do with the significant height difference between me and DH, and some to do with my proportionally long arms. His shoulder is basically at my eye level, with his upper arm not much lower, and his lower arm needs a significant downward slope to get to my back. If I put my left hand toward the inside of his upper arm, as I had been previously taught, the rotation in my wrist & lower arm requires my elbow to be not much lower than my hand, and that's too high to keep contact with his arm (and tends to push my shoulder up, too). But if I put my thumb on top of his upper arm, with my fingers slightly toward the back of his arm, it's physically possible for me to make a slope that matches his. When I thought it was all about whether he was drooping or I was lifting, I didn't understand why we were having so much trouble getting rid of the gap.

(stash, you're dealing with a height difference, too, right? I wonder if our situations are similar? Though if you *can* put your arm there and it's just that it pops up occasionally, probably not.)
 

nikkitta

Well-Known Member
Yes, I understand that there are adjustments that have to be made for couples with a larger than typical height difference. But, the angle of the left arm should not look disproportionately odd compared to the right arm when the lady is in dance position, in my non-professional opinion. It isn't cool to post the photos in question, so hopefully you can still envision what I mean.
 

bia

Well-Known Member
Oh, absolutely. I wasn't posting to disagree, and I'm sorry if I gave that impression. It just made me think of my own struggles with my left elbow. But, yes, what you've described is something that doesn't look attractive and needs fixing.
 

middy

Well-Known Member
Just remembered another thing I don't like, but this is my own pet peeve and rather small in the big scheme of things. And I understand why it's usually done. Lots of midwest college comps have the brightly-colored plastic-y wristband that everyone has to wear to get into the ballroom. Kind of like the ones people have to wear in amusement or water parks. Often it's neon yellow or green or something, and I think it just looks awful on the dance floor, particularly when it contrasts with a pretty, elegant, ballroom-y look. I prefer the black-light ink hand stamp for competitors, or handing a ticket to the doorperson to get in (and getting one from them when you leave, for re-entry).
 

dbk

Well-Known Member
Most of the ones I've pinned on a gentleman have holes punched in the corners with a paper punch--if you put the pins THROUGH the holes (ie not using the pin to jab a hole in the paper), and pin it so the is some freedom of movement (ie NOT flat tight against the gentleman's back) they don't seem to wear out of tear. I'm assuming this is numbers made of the usual card stock, not printed on lighter paper.
Just realized I had something to add on the topic of numbers: some comps (I know ours has) use track & field numbers. They're essentially Tyvek - can't rip like paper, they've got pre-punched holes, and they're cheap.
 

smidra86

Active Member
Just remembered another thing I don't like, but this is my own pet peeve and rather small in the big scheme of things. And I understand why it's usually done. Lots of midwest college comps have the brightly-colored plastic-y wristband that everyone has to wear to get into the ballroom. Kind of like the ones people have to wear in amusement or water parks. Often it's neon yellow or green or something, and I think it just looks awful on the dance floor, particularly when it contrasts with a pretty, elegant, ballroom-y look. I prefer the black-light ink hand stamp for competitors, or handing a ticket to the doorperson to get in (and getting one from them when you leave, for re-entry).
I don't usually put it on when I'm competing. I either make the wrist band big enough to slide off when I have to go and compete or I just leave it in the pocket of my track jacket or in my purse that I carry with me to the ballroom (and leave with a friend or somewhere hidden).
 

middy

Well-Known Member
I don't usually put it on when I'm competing. I either make the wrist band big enough to slide off when I have to go and compete or I just leave it in the pocket of my track jacket or in my purse that I carry with me to the ballroom (and leave with a friend or somewhere hidden).
I hide them under a thick blingy bracelet.
 
Just remembered another thing I don't like, but this is my own pet peeve and rather small in the big scheme of things. And I understand why it's usually done. Lots of midwest college comps have the brightly-colored plastic-y wristband that everyone has to wear to get into the ballroom. Kind of like the ones people have to wear in amusement or water parks. Often it's neon yellow or green or something, and I think it just looks awful on the dance floor, particularly when it contrasts with a pretty, elegant, ballroom-y look. I prefer the black-light ink hand stamp for competitors, or handing a ticket to the doorperson to get in (and getting one from them when you leave, for re-entry).
Those wrist bands such can be obnoxious, at least to me. Thankfully for both Valpo and Michigan this year they did without them (when they had had them the previous year).
 

dlliba10

Well-Known Member
Just remembered another thing I don't like, but this is my own pet peeve and rather small in the big scheme of things. And I understand why it's usually done. Lots of midwest college comps have the brightly-colored plastic-y wristband that everyone has to wear to get into the ballroom. Kind of like the ones people have to wear in amusement or water parks. Often it's neon yellow or green or something, and I think it just looks awful on the dance floor, particularly when it contrasts with a pretty, elegant, ballroom-y look. I prefer the black-light ink hand stamp for competitors, or handing a ticket to the doorperson to get in (and getting one from them when you leave, for re-entry).
Harvard had a nice system this year where we were told to put them on to get into the ballroom, rip them off right before our competitive rounds, then get another one from the deck captain once we were done. A little more expensive to get more bracelets, but it helped negate the worry about the wristbands clashing with costumes and connections.
 

mindputtee

Well-Known Member
That seems so terribly wasteful though. I like when they have hanging badges that can be slipped on and off and are easier to glance at as people are entering and exiting.
 

bia

Well-Known Member
I am very excited that we may be seeing the birth of collegiate competition in my region. I teach (a non-dance subject) at a school with a well-established social ballroom dance club, but no experience with competition, and with the closest established collegiate comps an 8-10 hour drive away. I thought that maybe I could encourage some of the club members to try dancing at the closest USA dance comp and threw the idea out to dance friends affiliated with a couple of other schools in the region, with the idea that the students at each school would be more likely to do it if they knew that students from other schools would be there. And the friends at one of those schools proposed organizing a little friendly two-team comp to give everyone a taste. So they put it together and got 25 students ready to compete, and I got 15 from my school to prepare and make the drive, and yesterday we had a little competition! They danced and cheered and had a wonderful time, and afterwards they all mixed together for social dancing, and everyone there said that they'd love to do it again next year, and what other schools can we invite? So, yay!
 
What makes a competition great vs. only good? Rarely does anyone say so and so competition was bad but often times we'll say some are just better than others. Is there more than size that makes a competition great?
 

mindputtee

Well-Known Member
I think the environment and atmosphere matters a lot. Are the people there excited, is there a lot of team spirit going on? Location is huge too, is it a hassle to get there? To get food?
 

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