Dancing has over last decade taken a prolific rise in popularity all thanks to the various social media platforms available to us. Over the last fifty to sixty years we have also witnessed a steady rise in dance classes for so many genres. These have always been well attended either after a workday, or over weekends, to the point where available spaces are often too difficult to find. The internet has further added to the wide range of opportunities where online classes can now be taken from anywhere in the world. Dancing features in so many sports at every Olympic Games. Examples include Aesthetic Group Gymnastics, Ice Skating, Artistic Swimming, and Artistic and Rhythmic Gymnastics. It was no surprise then for Dancesport to become competitive and emerge as one of the fastest growing sports in the world. One of the main reasons for the name Dancesport to be created, it to gain recognition by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). It is effectively competitive ballroom dancing, in contrast to social or exhibition dancing. With wheelchair dancesport, at least one of the dancers is confined to a wheelchair. The styles of competitive dancing can best be categorised to four areas, International Standard, International Latin, American Smooth, and American Rhythm. Dancesport is a team sport with an emphasis on gender equality. This involves mostly a couple but is often also a team of couples in formation. The earliest recorded unofficial world championship was held in 1909, while the first television broadcast of Dancesport was done in 1960. Today there are several organisations who manage the development of the dancing worldwide. Some of these include the World Dancesport Federation, the World Dance Council, and the World Swing Dance Council.
The World Dancesport Federation (WDSF) is the international governing body of dancesport and is also recognised by the IOC. Founded in 1957 as the Council of Amateur Dancers (ICAD), it then restructured to become the International Dancesport Federation (IDSF) in 1990. Two decades later, the professional division was created in 2010 that heralded the focus on professional dancesport. The following year, the current name was adopted to reflect the global character of the organisation. WDSF oversee several competitions each year and its members are only permitted to take part in events on WDSF’s calendar. On some occasions, the federation will allow members to enter competitions not on their calendar. WDSF is based in Lausanne, Switzerland and currently has over 90 member nations.