WSDC Registry Event Rules


WSDC Registry Events (“Registry Events”) are events organized and hosted by Professional Members of the WSDC and approved by the WSDC Board of Directors (“Board”). WSDC Jack and Jill competitions at Registry Events will have their contest results tracked, and points awarded for placements will be included in the WSDC Points Registry.

The WSDC serves to promote and grow swing dancing on a national and global level. The WSDC respects the interests of both new and existing members of the entire swing dance community. The Registry Event rules have been developed to ensure integrity, consistency and fairness at Registry Events.

The information below provides guidance on the requirements for obtaining, maintaining and holding a Registry Event. Violations may result in fines and/or loss of Registry Event status.

Note: For additional information on WSDC Jack and Jill divisions, points, and tiers, please review WSDC Points Registry Rules.

Section 1: Promoting Entity Requirements for Registry Events

Promoting entities (i.e., Event Owner, Event Director) must demonstrate that their event is viable and of sufficient size and scope to warrant WSDC Registry Event status. Promoting entities must have an approved preliminary event (“Trial Event”) prior to applying for status as a Registry Event.

1.1. Maintaining  Registry Event:

Members of Registry Events must remain in good standing by completing the following:

  1. Follow WSDC Registry Event Rules.
  2. Be current with WSDC annual membership dues.
  3. Submit competition results and Competitor Surcharge in a timely manner.

Any Member whose event loses Registry Event status must reapply and receive Registry Event approval, starting with Trial Event approval.

1.2. Adding a Registry Event:

New Members who wish to hold a Registry Event must meet the following requirements:

  1. Receive approval from the Board for a Trial Event.
  2. If the proposed event is within 400 miles (640 km) of an existing Registry Event, then the start and end dates of the proposed event must be more than 30 days from the start and end dates of the existing Registry Event.
  3. Run the event following the WSDC Registry Event Rules.
  4. Receive approval from the Board for Registry Event status.
  5. Join the WSDC as a Professional Member.

Existing Members who wish to add a Registry Event must meet all the requirements for holding a Registry Event listed under New Members.

Existing Members with current Registry Event(s) who wish to add an additional Registry Event must also meet the following requirements prior to applying for an additional event:

  1. All of the Member’s existing events must have a minimum of two (2) years of history as Registry Events in good standing.
  2. All of the Member’s existing events must have a minimum of three (3) WSDC skill level Jack and Jill divisions with at least 120 WSDC skill level Jack and Jill competitors.

1.3. Registry Event Application Process:

Trial Event Application Process

  1. Submit Trial Event application with application fee ($50) to Board a minimum of 6 months prior to Trial Event.
  2. Trial Event application must include, but is not limited to, the proposed event criteria: Promoter / Member / Owner(s), event name, date, location (city, county), format, competition divisions, and staff (including Chief Judge).
  3. If the proposed event is within 400 miles (640 km) of an existing Registry Event, then the start and end dates of the proposed event must be more than 30 days from the start and end dates of the existing Registry Event.
  4. The Board will review the Trial Event application. Events are approved based on the proposed event criteria. The approved event will be listed as a Trial Event on the WSDC Events Calendar.

Trial Events are required to follow all Registry Event rules, especially Sections 5 (Registry Event Structure) and 6 (Competition Requirements). Trial Events must offer a minimum of two (2) skill level WSDC Jack and Jill contests at Tier 1 size with a minimum of eighty (80) unique skill level WSDC Jack and Jill competitors. Registry Event applications may be denied if any event criteria change during the Trial Event’s “year of history” and/or the Trial Event does not follow all Registry Event rules. If denied, a second Trial Event (another year of history) may be required.

Registry Event Application Process

  1. Within five (5) days after the close of the Trial Event, the Member must submit the following:
    1. Completed WSDC Event Reporting form.
    2. List of competitors, preliminary and final contest scores, and contest tabulation sheets. This information will be reviewed by the WSDC for verification of unique competitors, proper placement of skill levels, and proper scoring.
  2. Member must submit the Registry Event application.
  3. The Board will review the Registry Event application and supporting documents. If approved as a Registry Event, the Member must be a Professional Member in good standing (see Maintaining a Registry Event and Membership Dues and Requirements). The event will be listed as a Registry Event on the WSDC Events Calendar.

1.4. Changing an Existing Registry Event:

Changes in ownership, event name, location, and/or date of a Registry Event are subject to the approval of the Board. Prior to a proposed change, the Member shall:

  1. Notify the Board and membership of the proposed change(s) six (6) months prior to the Registry Event.
  2. For event location or date changes: If the member’s event is within 400 miles (640 km) of another existing Registry Event, then the start and end dates of the member’s event must be more than 30 days from the start and end dates of the existing Registry Event (i.e., the change must not result in a new conflict).
  3. The original owner(s) must retain at least 50% ownership during the first two (2) years of running their event as a Registry Event. If the original owners sell more than 50% ownership within the first two (2) years, WSDC status will not transfer to the new owners.

The following exceptions do not require Board approval:

  1. A one (1) week change before / after an event’s original Events associated with a specific date / holiday may be held either the weekend before / after that specific date / holiday.
  2. A change from one city to another city in the same metropolitan area (and within a reasonable distance) will not be considered a change in location.

1.5. Existing Registry Event Hiatus:

Registry Events are allowed a one (1) year break without losing their Registry Event status. New Registry Events must hold two (2) Registry Events before being eligible for hiatus. Hiatus may be a cancellation of the current or upcoming year. The event may be listed on the WSDC Events Calendar with a note that the event is on hiatus. Events on hiatus will keep their date and location on the WSDC Events Calendar for assessing new event conflicts.

A one (1) year break is automatically allowed if the following criteria are met:

  1. Members notify the Board that their Registry Event is on hiatus for the current or following year in advance.
  2. Members maintain their WSDC Professional Membership during the hiatus (i.e., Members pay their membership fee). Note: Members will receive no partial or full refunds for a canceled event.

After an event has gone on hiatus, the event must complete a minimum of two (2) consecutive events before it may go on hiatus again. If no event is held in the year following the break (i.e., the event is not held for two (2) consecutive years), the event will lose its Registry Event status. Members would need to reapply for Registry Event approval.

Section 2: Membership Dues and Requirements

All Members shall agree to the following:

  1. Pay annual Professional Membership dues as established by the Board. Membership fees include the right to hold one (1) Registry Event (“Primary Event”).
    1. Initial membership application fee: $200.
    2. Membership renewal fee: $200 annually, due after the close of a Member’s Primary Event.
    3. Additional Registry Event(s) (“Secondary Event(s)”) fee: $100 upon approval as a Registry Event and $100 annually for each Secondary Event, due after the close of each Secondary Event.
  2. Conduct their Registry Event(s), contests and business functions in an ethical manner; provide fair, unbiased and untampered competitions, judging and scoring; and meet their financial obligations and stated rules & policies.
  3. Acknowledge that membership and membership changes (e.g., new applications, event changes, renewals, new event ownership entities, reinstatements) shall be at the discretion of the Board. The Board reserves the right to deny memberships and additional events.

Late submission of Membership Dues may result in penalties (see Penalty Chart for Late Membership Fees / Late Competitor Surcharge and WSDC Enforcement Policy and Penalties).

Section 3: Competitor Surcharge

Members must provide a Competitor Surcharge to the WSDC for all competitors entering WSDC Jack and Jill competitions. The Surcharge is $1 per competitor. The Surcharge may be included as part of or added separately to the event’s WSDC Jack and Jill entry fee.

Late submission of Competitor Surcharge may result in penalties (see Penalty Chart for Late Membership Fees / Late Competitor Surcharge and WSDC Enforcement Policy and Penalties).

Penalty Chart for Late Membership Fees / Late Competitor Surcharge

Date Submitted


31-60 days


61-90 days


91-120 days


>120 days

Loss of Registry Event Status

Section 4: Competition Results Reporting

Members must report results for all WSDC Jack and Jill competitions to the WSDC, using the Event Reporting Form provided by the WSDC. Competitors’ WSDC ID numbers (if assigned by the Points Registry) should be included. The Event Director and/or the Chief Judge shall verify contest results and the number of contestants.

Competition results are due to the WSDC at the close of the Registry Event. Submission of contest results within a timely manner is required out of respect for our competitors, so the WSDC can provide the most current Points Registry to upcoming events.

Late submission of competition results may result in penalties (see Penalty Chart for Late Submission of Competition Results and WSDC Enforcement Policy and Penalties).

Penalty Chart for Late Submission of Competition Results

Date Submitted


6-30 days


31-60 days


>60 days

Loss of Registry Event Status

Section 5: Registry Event Structure

Registry Events must comply with the following event structure, unless otherwise approved by the Board:

  1. Registry Events must have a minimum of three (3) days of swing dance activities / functions (e.g., social dancing, lessons, workshops, competitions).
  2. Registry Events must be open to any dancers. Restricted or closed city, state or regional events are not eligible.
  3. Registry Events must be held in a hotel with ballroom and guest rooms available, unless otherwise approved by the Board.
  4. Registry Events must offer a minimum of two (2) skill level WSDC Jack and Jill contests at Tier 1 size with a minimum of eighty (80) unique skill level WSDC Jack and Jill competitors. (See WSDC Points Registry Rules for additional information.)
    1. If the event has less than 80 unique skill level competitors, the competition results will be posted and Registry Points awarded, but the event will be placed on probation for one (1) year and must increase its competitor numbers to meet the required minimum.
    2. If the event has less than 80 unique skill level competitors during the probation year’s event, the event will lose its status as a Registry Event. The event’s results during probation will be posted and Registry Points awarded. Member may reapply for Registry Event approval.
  5. Registry Events must occur annually and maintain the same date and location. Any changes to ownership, event name, location and/or date must be approved by the Board. (See Changing an Existing Registry Event.)

Section 6: Competition Requirements

Registry Events must follow all contest, event staff and scoring requirements outlined below, unless otherwise approved by the Board.

For the purposes of this section, Event Director and Owner are defined as follows:

  • Event Director is any person involved in a strategic planning or decision-making role related to the hiring of judges and/or scoring staff.
  • Owner is any person with >20% ownership in the event.

6.1. Contest Structure / Format Requirements:

  1. Each Registry Event may offer only one (1) WSDC Jack and Jill for each skill level or age-based contest.
  2. Each Registry Event must offer a minimum of two (2) skill level WSDC Jack and Jill divisions.
  3. Each competitor may enter only one (1) skill level WSDC Jack and Jill.
  4. Each competitor may enter either as a Leader or Follower, and maintain that role throughout the contest, at Registry Events that allow this option or as traditional Male / Leader or Female / Follower at Registry Events that maintain traditional roles.
    1. Competitors may compete as a Leader / Follower in a skill level Jack and Jill contest and as a Follower / Leader (in the opposite role) in an age-based level Jack and Jill and/or other contest(s), if permitted by the Registry Event.
  5. Events must use the Points Registry to determine competitors’ appropriate skill levels. Competitors wishing to dance in a different division must receive formal approval through the petition process (see WSDC Points Registry Rules).
  6. Events may not artificially balance their competitions (i.e., make their Leader and Follower numbers the same in a division). Unacceptable examples include, but are not limited to, shifting competitors from one division to another (including the use of petitions), changing / combining divisions, adding “walk-on” competitors (e.g., audience members who did not sign up in advance), and adding stand-in dancers.
  7. The integrity of random and unbiased selection must be maintained.
    1. Rotations (e.g., in preliminary heats) shall be determined at random (e.g., roll of dice, drawing of number cards, random number generator).
    2. Determining which dancers dance more than once (e.g., in uneven preliminary heats) shall be random.
    3. The pairing of partners in finals and determining the order of dance shall be random (e.g., drawing dance partner names and/or dance order shall be done “on the floor,” random computer function).
  8. Posting of results shall be open to all competitors for a predetermined, limited time period. If results are inaccurate (e.g., scoring issues, violations), corrected results must be posted.


6.2. Event / Competition Staff Requirements:

  1. Chief Judge and Scoring / Tabulation functions and duties must be provided by separate individuals.
    1. An Assistant Chief Judge may assist the Chief Judge and is subject to the same Chief Judge requirements.
  2. The Event Director and/or Owner must not perform Chief Judge, Judge, or Scoring functions or duties.
  3. The Event Director, Owner, Chief Judge, and Score person (or Contest Administrator with automated scoring systems) must not compete in any swing contests at the event, with the following exceptions:
    1. Any contest of a different dance genre and/or sponsored and run by a separate organization. Exceptions must be authorized by the Board prior to the event.
    2. Exhibitions only.
    3. At UCWDC events only, Event Director, Owner, Chief Judge, and Score person may dance in a UCWDC Pro-Am West Coast Swing contest. This exception is allowed since it is permitted under UCWDC rules.
  4. Judges must make decisions independently and scores must be properly compiled, tabulated, and reviewed.
    1. Group judging decisions (whether “on the floor” or “in the back room”), “tap out” eliminations during the contest (by an individual judge or as a group), or instantaneous (“on the floor”) are not permitted.
  5. All real and/or perceived biases must be identified and avoided. All issues of bias or conflict (e.g., positive / negative favoritism, personal (family, spouse, significant other), business, or dance partners) between any judge (including Chief Judge) and competitors should be submitted to the Chief Judge and/or Event Director. Judging assignments must be made to avoid potential conflicts.
    1. Exceptions are allowed for Pro-Am Jack and Jill and Pro-Am Strictly Swing competitions where judges are judging the Ams only.
  6. Judges for contests must meet the following standards:
    1. For preliminary Jack and Jill contests, a minimum of six (6) judges (plus Chief Judge) are required. A minimum of three (3) judges shall be assigned to each role. The WSDC recommends Registry Events use four to five (4-5) judges per role in preliminary contests to get more consistent results. The following exceptions are allowed:
      1. Where there are 15 or fewer couples, events may use three to five (3-5) judges. Judges must judge both roles.
      2. Where there are 16-20 couples, events may use five to seven (5-7) judges. Judges must judge both roles.
    2. For final Jack and Jill contests, a minimum of five (5) judges (plus Chief Judge) are required. An even number of judges shall not be used. The WSDC recommends Registry Events use seven (7) judges for finals.
    3. The Chief Judge may join the general judging panel only if there is an unforeseen / unavoidable shortage of general judges.
    4. Self-judging contests are allowed only in the Champions division. Self-judging should occur only if there is an insufficient number of available judges.
  7. Contests must use the Callback System for preliminary competitions and Relative Placement scoring system for finals.
    1. The Callback System for preliminary competitions has been standardized. The following point values must be assigned to judges’ callbacks: Yes = 10; Alternate 1 (Alt 1) = 4.5; Alternate 2 = 4.3; Alternate 3 = 4.2; No = 0. The outcome for callbacks must be determined by the sum of the values.
      1. Scoring systems should not use more than 3 levels of Alternates (e.g., no Alternate 4).
      2. At their discretion, the Chief Judge may ask judges to use only Alt 1s or Alt 1s & Alt 2s instead of Alt 1, Alt 2 & Alt 3s, for any specific contest. In larger contests, if more alternates are desired, the Chief judge may ask for two or more Alt 1s; Alt 1 & Alt 2s; or Alt 1, Alt 2, & Alt 3s.
      3. In the event of a tie, the Chief Judge continues to break ties.
  1. All scoring shall be computerized and tabulated by someone thoroughly trained and knowledgeable in the Callback and Relative Placement scoring systems. Information on Relative Placement is available on the WSDC website (com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Relative_placement).

Section 7: WSDC Enforcement Policy and Penalties

The WSDC recommends that all events have a Sexual Awareness policy. A suggested policy is available on the WSDC website (see for more information).

Registry Event rules are enforced by the WSDC Board. Unless otherwise approved, any WSDC Professional Member or Registry Event that does not comply with the WSDC Registry Event Rules will be considered in default of their membership and subject to penalties and/or loss of Registry Event status.

Members who violate Registry Event rules, including late submission of their Membership dues, Competitor Surcharge, or competition results, will be in default. Default may result one or more of the following options:

  1. Warning
  2. Fine
  3. Probation
  4. Loss of Registry Event status
    1. Event may be listed as Trial Event for the following year at the Board’s discretion.
    2. Event may be required to reapply for Registry Event approval, including requiring a new Trial Event.

Note: Penalties specific to late submission of Membership fees, Competitor Surcharge, and competition results are detailed in Sections 2, 3, and 4, respectively.

Members in default may reapply for WSDC membership or Registry Event status, subject to approval by the Board.

The WSDC reserves the right to revise / add / delete rules, add Registry Events, and assign penalties and violations at its discretion.

WSDC Penalties for Registry Event Rules Violations (effective March 2017)

Penalty Level


Level of Responsibility


Penalty Level 1



The event, promoter, or associated person(s) did not know and reasonably should not have known of the violation.

Penalty Level 2

Possible probation

Reasonable Cause

The event, promoter, or associated person(s) knew or, by exercising reasonable diligence, should have known that the act or omission was a violation.

Penalty Level 3

$500-750 and Probation


The violation was the result of failure or indifference to follow WSDC Registry Event rules.

Penalty Level 4

$750-1000 and Probation


The violation was the result of conscious, intentional failure or reckless indifference to follow WSDC Registry Event rules.

Penalty Level 5

Loss of Registry Event status


The violation was the result of purposeful intent or indifference to WSDC Registry Event rules.


Section 8: Event and Competition Recommendations

The WSDC makes the following recommendations (not requirements) for Registry Events:

  1. If an event has multiple partner competitions, competitors should have different partners for each partner competition.
  2. If a partnership consists of competitors at different skill levels, the couple should compete at the higher skill level.
  3. Events should avoid combining skill level divisions, when possible.
  4. Event should hold separate Junior contests.
  5. With the exception of Junior contests, contests should be limited to adults, defined as 18 years or older by the close of the event.
  6. Posting of final callbacks should include the finalists’ WSDC Competitor ID number, if assigned, from the Points Registry.
  7. Posting of results should include the following:
    1. Judges should be referred to by designations, with a separate list linking the designations with the judges’ names.
    2. Posted callbacks should include only competitors with a minimum of one (1) callback or one (1) alternate.
    3. Posted finals should include only the top 10-12 placements.

Section 9: Computerized Scoring System Requirements

A computerized scoring system should do the following tasks:

  1. Place competitors within the various divisions and contests.
  2. Randomly assign competitors to heats in preliminary rounds.
  3. Create preliminary and finals contest judging sheets with pre-populated information.
  4. Tabulate and rank callbacks. See Section 6.2.7 on new requirements for ranking callbacks.
  5. Create callback announcement sheets.
  6. Transfer competitors to finals.
  7. Randomly assign partners (if needed).
  8. Place paired competitors in random dance order or place competitors in numerical order for “draw for dance order,” as needed.
  9. Tabulate and rank finals contests for placement results.
  10. Provide results / announcement / posting sheets.

Current version dated 1.1.2020.

Previous versions dated 11.1.2007, 1.1.2009, 9.1.2010, 1.1.2012, 7.1.2015, 1.1.2018, 2.15.2019.

Addendum to Registry Rules May 2021

 Non-dominant Role Competing and Tracking

Based on the input from our dance community, in February 2021, the WSDC Board announced that competitors would be allowed to compete as both Leaders and Followers in skill level Jack & Jills at any given event (previously, competitors had to choose to compete in only one role for the skill level J&J for that event).

Here are details on how it works:

· Leader and Follower points will be tracked separately in Points Registry.

· Competitors qualify for their dance level based on either their Leader or Follower points, whichever is   higher.

· Competitors are allowed to compete in their non-dominant role one level down, as long as they don’t qualify in both for the same division. No petitions will be approved for dancing more than one level down.

· Competitors will not be permitted to dance both roles in the same division.

Current competitors whose combined points as both a Leader and Follower would have moved them into a higher skill level will be offered a one-time option (to be “grandfathered” into the higher level).

Competitors – please contact us at [email protected] if any points are/were incorrectly allocated to the wrong role in the system.

The WSDC Board is updating our Points Registry database to reflect a competitor’s dominant role level (“Dance Level”). To keep it simple for contest registration, we will also reflect a competitor’s eligibility in their non-dominant role.

This rule is not mandatory for events. Events may allow competitors to dance in both roles or limit competitors to one role only.


· Chris has 5 Int points as a Leader; 1 Nov point as a Follower. Chris may dance in Int as a Leader and in Nov as a Follower.

· Alex has 20 Adv points as a Follower; 0 points as a Leader. Alex may dance in Adv as a Follower and in Int as a Leader (one level down).

·  Jordan has 10 Adv points as a Leader and 10 Adv points as a Follower. Jordan may dance in Adv as either a Leader or Follower, but not both. Jordan may not petition to dance in Int in either role.

· Taylor has 30 Int points as a Follower and 16 Int points as a Leader. Previously, Taylor would have been required to dance Adv with a 46 combined point total. Taylor will make a one-time choice whether to dance in Adv as a Follower going forward or to remain in Intermediate for both roles.

Virtual judging is not allowed

During this pandemic, we have been advised that some Jack and Jill competitions were judged virtually. To clarify, this option is not allowed by the WSDC. Virtual judges cannot replace in-person judging – this can impact the integrity of the contest.

No New Trial Events will be approved in 2021

 Continued “freeze” on Advanced / All Star 3 year window for points

Competitors will continue to be awarded points, but no competitors will be penalized for not having the opportunity to compete due to Covid-19. We will continue to leave this window open for the foreseeable future.

Registry Events must meet certain minimum standards and requirements to maintain the integrity of the event (e.g., size, staff, judging process, contests, venue). The WSDC Board is the governing body for WSDC Registry Events and administers the Points Registry for competitor Jack and Jill points.

Lower Competitor Requirements for 2021

In early 2020, the WSDC Board announced the required number of competitors would increase to 80. To encourage the safe and slow re-entry of dance events, the WSDC Board is lowering that number for 2021. 

· For 2021 only, WSDC will require 60 unique competitors. These can include both skill level and age-based competitors.

· Registry Events will need to submit their full roster of competitors with their reporting form.

Venue flexibility for Registry Events

Over the past several years, the WSDC Board has discussed the option to expand approved venues for  Events from hotels to “other venues”. For the past year, since our January 2020 Board meeting, we have spent time   researching our current Events’ venues and listening to our membership’s concerns and recommendations to develop our new guidance. Exceptions to holding Registry Events in hotels will still need Board review and approval – especially this year.

We wanted to give our Event Directors more flexibility with location and costs, while maintaining the brand and integrity of a WSDC Registry Event.

Below are our requirements for an acceptable alternate venue:

· The venue must be special – with either architectural style or character “above and beyond” (e.g., castle,  stadium / sports facility, performing arts / cultural centers). Dance studios and warehouse-type facilities are not acceptable and will not be approved.

· The venue must have enough dance floor and space for attendees. The following are minimum requirements:

· Ballroom must accommodate a minimum of 150 occupants (as defined by local building codes)

· Ballroom must have a minimum dance floor of 2000 sq ft / 186 sq meters

· Venue must provide full service (food) and/or options must be available nearby.  We strongly recommend our Event Directors provide information on nearby hotels and available transportation on their website /Facebook.

Over the years, the WSDC has held the U.S. to the hotel-only standard because they are readily available (exceptions are a handful of grandfathered events). Outside of the U.S., we have been flexible in markets (cities/countries) that do not have access to appropriate hotels, and have worked closely with the EDs on these choices.  The markets that do have multiple hotels, we have held them to the same standard as the U.S.  We are now opening this flexibility of non-hotel locations to all events in the world. 

We are not stating you must be in a hotel (although it’s preferred when possible for a variety of  reasons), but we continue to say no to a dance studio.  Studios present a conflict of interest.  This is similar to the conflict of  interest you would see if an Event Director were to be allowed to judge or compete at their own event. If the    studio owner is the ED or is affiliated with the event  director, there is an appearance of influence on judging or  other aspects of the event.  Studios do not provide a neutral setting for the entire community to be welcomed and encouraged to attend.  Hotels and other venues, though not perfect, help to lessen the fractions in different communities and allow different instructors that don’t get along personally to come to a neutral place to compete and to socialize.  Hotels also provide more “safety” since everything is contained in one space. Studios are where you have your weekly and monthly dances.  A Registry Event is designed to be a special  experience at a different place that draws interstate and/or international competitors from around the world.