At Arizona Ballroom Champions, we support all types of dance partners and embrace the growing movement towards same-sex dance lessons and partnerships.
Around 2010, the National Dance Council of America (NDCA) changed its rules, defining a partnership as “one man and one woman” for all amateur and professional competitions. Fortunately, the world of dance has evolved, and inclusive, diverse partnerships now take center stage.
In 2016, Dancing With The Stars debuted its first same-sex ballroom dancing performance, featuring Full House star Jodie Sweetin and America’s Next Top Model star Nyle DiMarco. In 2021, Jojo Siwa made history as the first contestant to compete with a same-sex partner. These groundbreaking performances showed that gender-neutral dancing is not only accepted but also fun, engaging, and captivating.
Gender-neutral dance partnerships have gained acceptance and popularity worldwide, thanks to increased visibility. Dance instructors Trevor Copp and Jeff Fox, for instance, created a ballroom dance form where partners take turns leading, aiming to break down gender roles. They showcased their innovative approach at a TEDx talk in Montreal.
On September 23, the NDCA amended a long-standing rule, enabling same-sex and gender-neutral couples to compete against opposite-sex couples at sanctioned events. This change redefines a couple in ballroom dance as a leader and a follower, irrespective of the dancers’ sex or gender. The rule change promotes inclusivity and helps the dance community grow.
Dance partners Mark Hakes and Elijah Jensen, who have learned ballroom dance together for two years, can now compete together at NDCA-sanctioned events. Supporters of the new rule are enthusiastic, but concerns arise about adjusting attire rules and other traditional dance aspects. However, the community sees this rule change as a significant step toward embracing diverse and inclusive dance partnerships.
Embracing inclusivity, dance variations worldwide now include gender-neutral partnerships, highlighting that dance and art celebrate life, society, and human nature. This celebration includes everyone, regardless of race, gender, age, or sexual orientation.
No Partner? No Problem! Date night for LGBTQ+ couples just got better. If you don’t have a partner or if your partner doesn’t like to dance, don’t worry! All single LGBTQ+ individuals are welcome to learn in a relaxed environment from professionals and community members.
By taking gender-neutral dance lessons, you have the freedom to learn how to lead, follow, or both! We believe this approach fosters well-rounded dancers and eases stress for those not conforming to traditional gender-based dance roles (i.e., men leading, women following).
You Will Always Have a Home at Arizona Ballroom Champions
Now more than ever, we want to ensure that all gender-neutral partnerships feel comfortable taking ballroom dance lessons in a setting that makes them feel welcomed, relaxed, and respected.
To us, it doesn’t matter who leads or follows. We believe ballroom dancing should be fun, and you should share the experience with a partner
Check out our New Student Special and start dancing today!