2022  Competition Rules

SOswing complies with the competition guidelines of the World Swing Dance Council (WSDC). As a competitor, you are responsible for knowing the division in which you are eligible/required to compete, for understanding the WSDC Points Registry Rules, and for using your WSDC Competitor ID number when registering for competitions. WSDC rules mandate that you dance in the Jack & Jill division at the appropriate skill level for which you qualify.

SO Swing recognizes the WSDC petitioning process for moving one level up or down based on the competitor’s current points. You may submit a formal petition to Chief Judge Trudy Thatcher in order to dance only one skill level up or one skill level down from the Jack & Jill division for which you qualify. A committee including the Chief Judge will consider the requested reclassification petition after reviewing your WSDC Points Registry record. All decisions of our competition officials are final. No appeals are allowed.

To compete at So Swing 2022, you must:

  • Hold a full weekend event pass.

  • Register for competitions during the open registration times listed on the schedule and pay the required entry fees.

  • Sign a legal waiver. If you are under 18, your parent or guardian must sign the legal waiver for you.

  • Have the consent of a parent or guardian if you are under 18 years of age; you should also be comfortable social dancing with adults.

  • Demonstrate good sporting conduct at all times, both on and off the competition floor. This includes treating your partners, other competitors, competition officials, spectators, and the event itself with respect.

  • Know the rules. Read the rules carefully prior to the competition. You are responsible for following the rules whether or not you have read them.


In addition,

  • There are no mandatory competitor meetings at SOswing.  (There will be a voluntary meeting for newcomer or novice dancers who want to attend.) You are responsible for checking the event schedule and knowing the time of your competitions.

  • The Event Directors reserve the right to cancel any division with fewer than five couples.

  • If your name is not called by the final preliminary heat in your division, see the emcee or Chief Judge immediately to let them know you signed up but were not yet called.

  • If you are not in the ballroom when the last name is called to the floor for the final preliminary heat in your division, you will not compete.

  • During semi-final and final rounds, if you are not present in the ballroom after the last name has been called to the floor, we will call the alternate(s) to dance in your place. Once the alternate has been called, the dancer not present is out of the competition.

  • If you miss or withdraw from a competition, you forfeit your entry fee.



SO Swing Jack & Jills are gender neutral. For skill-based WSDC Registry Jack & Jill divisions (Newcomer, Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, and All Star), you may enter only one level as either a leader or a follower at your appropriate WSDC-pointed level. Once entered as a leader or a follower, you must remain in that same role throughout that competition (prelims, semi-finals, and finals).

Newcomer You are encouraged to dance in the Newcomer Division if you are new to competition, have earned fewer than six Newcomer points, and have not earned any WSDC points in a higher division.

Novice You may dance in this division if you have less than 30 Novice points and no points from a higher division.

Intermediate You may dance in this division if you have 16* or more Novice points, less than 45 Intermediate points, and no points from a higher division. *Dancers who earned 15 Novice points by December 31, 2017 will be allowed to dance in Intermediate by following the petition process.

Advanced You may dance in this division if you have 30 or more Intermediate points, less than 60 Advanced points accumulated within the last 36 months, and no points from a higher division, unless you are returning to Advanced from the All Star Division. All Star competitors who have not earned at least three All Star points within the last 36 months will also dance in the Advanced Division.

All Star You may dance in this division if you have at least 45 Advanced points accumulated within the last 36 months, OR you have earned at least three All Star points within the last 36 months, OR you are returning to All Star by earning at least 10 Advanced points in the last 12 months.

Masters Jack & Jill (WSDC aged-based division) Dancers aged 50 and above may compete in the Masters Jack & Jill Division in addition to and in the same role as in their skill-based level.  They may also compete in the Non-WSDC Sophisticated Jack and Jill.


Sophisticated Jack & Jill Dancers aged 35 and above may compete in the Sophisticated Jack & Jill Division in addition to and in the same role as in their skill-based level.  

All American Jack & Jill This division is open to competitors of all levels and you may enter in the role of your choice. Once randomly paired by the computer, the dancers compete as a couple through all rounds of competition. This competition is gender neutral, but role switching within the competition is NOT allowed.

3-Way Strictly Swing Teams must be comprised of 3 dancers of which at least one is not a SOswing staff member. Costumes are allowed but are not mandatory.

Invitational Jack & Jill Participation is at the discretion of the Event Directors.



Competitors may compete in one leveled and one age-based Strictly Swing division as long as they have different partners for each division.

Competitors must dance in the highest leveled division within the partnership. (Example: Novice lead/Intermediate follow must dance in the Intermediate division)

Both competitors must be at least 50 years of age to compete in the Masters Division.



  • All dancing must be lead/follow. Pre-choreographed routines, in whole or in part, are not allowed.

  • At least 90 percent recognizable swing content is required.

  • For Jack & Jills, all competitors must wear their bib numbers for all rounds of competition. Bibs are only required for leaders in the Strictly Swing competitions. Bibs are not required for the Invitational Jack & Jill.

  • You and your partner must maintain physical contact except for spins, turns, short breakaways, and recoveries.

  • “In the air” partner weight support moves (lifts, aerials) and acrobatic maneuvers are not allowed in any competition.

  • “On the ground” support moves (such as drops and slides) are allowed. However, you and your partner must each maintain at least one foot in physical contact with the floor during support moves.


SOswing makes every effort to conduct all competitions in accordance with current WSDC guidelines and reserves the right to update our Competition Rules should WSDC requirements change.

SOswing also reserves the right to make any changes in the competition schedule or format as we deem necessary.