To ensure competition is fair and equal, all Para sports, including Para dance sport, have a system in place which ensures that winning is determined by skill, fitness, power, endurance, tactical ability and mental focus, the same factors that account for success in sport for able-bodied athletes.
This process is called classification, and its purpose is to minimise the impact of impairments on the activity (sport discipline).
Eligible impairment types
Impaired muscle power
Impaired passive range of movement
Leg length difference
Athletes must have at least one the seven impairment types that fulfil the minimum impairment criteria to be eligible to compete in World Para Dance Sport.
Sport and competition classes:
In World Para Dance Sport, there are six sport classes and four competition classes. Each sport class is made up of letters and a number, and is specific to an event. The letters refer to the event in which the athlete competes. SC is Combi Standard, SD is Duo Standard and L&F is for combi Latin, duo Latin, single, and freestyle dances. Sport class 1 is the more impaired and sport class 2 the lesser impaired within each event. Duo competition class is named by the event. Duo ST refers to duo standard event, and Duo LA refers to duo Latin event. The number in the Duo competition class name is the group for the event. Competition class 1 is more impaired than competition class 2.
Individual athletes’ sport class
Athletes competing in combi standard class 1 have lower trunk control but inability to actively straighten their trunk, and/or inability to keep their arm frame with the partner during dancing movements. You might expect to see athletes with high-level spinal cord injury or spina bifida, quadriplegic cerebral palsy, poliomyelitis involving trunk and/or arm, or traumatic brain injury.
Athletes competing in combi standard class 2 have limited impairment in their upper body. These athletes are able to keep their trunks straight, and can keep their arm frames with the partner during dancing movements. You might expect to see athletes with low-level spinal cord injury or spina bifida, missing legs, diplegic cerebral palsy, or poliomyelitis involving lower limbs only.
Athletes competing in duo standard 1 have impairment involving their trunk and arms. These athletes have difficulties in maintaining trunk stability during dance movements, and may have difficulty in wheel control and/or elongation out of base of support.
Athletes competing in duo standard 2 have full/ near full function of their trunk and legs. These athletes are able to maintain trunk stability during dance movements, and have fair to good elongation ability out of their centre of gravity.
Athletes competing in class 1 of combi Latin, and/or duo Latin, and/or single dances, and/or freestyle have obvious impairments involving their trunk and even arms. These athletes generally have no pelvis movement and poor trunk control. Reaching out of their centre of gravity is impossible unless compensated by support.
Athletes competing in class 2 of combi Latin, and/or duo Latin and/or single dances, and/or freestyle have no or minimal impairment involving their trunk and pelvis. These athletes generally have good trunk control and can have various degrees of pelvis movement. They can reach out of their centre of gravity and generally have good wheel control.
Duo competition class
In Duo competition, the team competition class is defined by combining both partners’ scores from Athlete Evaluation. If the couple scores less than 50 they will compete in the competition class 1; if their combined score is 50 or more, they will compete in competition class 2.
Couples competing in duo standard class 1 either both have an SD1 sport class, or the combined scores are less than 50. These couples will have greater impairment in their ability to have variety of movements and thus fewer choreography possibilities, or there will be difficulty in the choreography for the balance between the two athletes.
Couples competing in duo standard class 2 either both have an SD2 sport class, or the combined scores are equal or more than 50.
For couples competing in duo Latin class 1, either both athletes have an L&F1 sport class, or the combined scores are less than 50. These couples will have greater impairment in their ability to have a variety of movements and thus fewer choreography possibilities, or there will be difficulty in the choreography for the balance between the two athletes.
For couples competing in duo Latin class 2, either both athletes have an L&F2 sport class, or the combined scores are equal or more than 50.
For a WPDS-approved or -sanctioned competition, the classifiers will be appointed by the Sport Technical Committee. The team of classifiers has to consist of a minimum two international classifiers. At least one of them has to be a medical classifier.
Event organisers must provide sufficient time for classification which can be completed at least two hours before warm-up dancing. The room must be of sufficient size and have a hard floor to test dancing.
The team leader of the classified athlete can protest the classification within one hour after the classification has taken place (see also general protest regulation of WPDS classification Rules and Regulations).
Any resulting protest classification should be completed within one hour after the original protest, provided the protest is accepted, and be conducted by a different team if available. If there is no second team of classifiers in that competition, the protest classification should be conducted in the nearest possible international classification
2019 International Classifiers List
|Miriam de Haasnagler||NED|
|Marjon van Eysden||NED|
|Peer van der Riet||NED|
|Hedi Anne Birkeland||NOR|
|Name||Country||Certificate Expiry Date|
|Olivia Lam||HKG||September 2019|
|Noel Leung||HKG||September 2019|
|Camilla Paniccia||ITA||May 2019|
|Alberto Dimarucut||PHI||September 2019|
|Michelle Salas||PHI||September 2019|
|Marzena Polak||POL||May 2019|
|Peter Vidasic||SVK||May 2019|
|Hsuan-Wei Chiu||TPE||September 2019|