Normally, ballroom dancing is the experience of a couple…a man and woman who learn to coordinate their movements together, which is done independent, though courteous of other couples who might be on the floor. There is another form of dancing enjoyed around the world that is designed more for performance and competition which is known as formation team dancing.
What is formation team dancing?
Formation teams are organized into groups of typically 6-8 (or sometimes 4) couples who act like a ballet corps or chorus line to create synchronized movements, lines and patterns on the floor while performing ballroom dances. The most simple of movements, like raising an arm, takes on a much greater impact to an audience when done simultaneously by eight couples filling the dance floor. Typically each member of the team has a similar costume and some competitive teams from other countries go so far as to color their hair the same color and have their height match as closely as possible.
Though formation teams perform ballroom dances, they are not always in typical dance hold doing conventional ballroom dance steps…especially at the intro and exit to their routines. A team is designated as either a performance team (having greater freedom of steps and done for the joy of performance), or a competitive formation team (where greater restrictions apply and routines are judged at ballroom competitions).