Pole Art Competition

Sandton Convention Centre, Maude Street, Johannesburg, South Africa.

Please contact us if you have any questions that have not been answered below.

Saturday 16th May 2020
13:00-19:30 (approximate times)

‘Organiser(s)’ refer to the organisers of Pole & Aerial at Arnold Classic Africa 2020, as well as the overall Arnold Classic Africa organisers.

‘Competitor(s)’ refer to those entering this competition.

Competitor Entry Information
Video entries open 1st February 2020.
Video entries close 6th April 2020.

Entry Fees:
R450 per competitor.
R600 per duet.
An optional R150 per competitor can be added for a Pole & Aerial at Arnold Classic Africa vest or T-Shirt.

Entry forms will open in February 2020. Watch this space!

Additional Competitor Information:
Final divisions to be announced by 17th April 2020.
Competitors to submit music, props and MC information by 27th April 2020.
Competitor rehearsals 15th & 16th May.

What is Pole Art Performance Competition?
It is a pole competition taking place on a stage within one of the main exhibition halls at Arnold Classic Africa. During this event each Pole Art Performance competitor will perform a choreographed 3-3.30 minute routine to music displaying their technical and artistic ability in a pole performance. Competitors will be judged by experienced judges.

Who can take part in Pole Art Performance Competition?
Solos and Duets (including same or mixed gender pairs).
Age Groups (on the day of final) for Pole Art Performance Competition include:
13-17 Girls
13-17 Boys
18-39 Women
18-39 Men
40+ Women
40+ Men
50+ Women
50+ Men

Divisions/Levels for Pole Art Performance Competition include:

How do I know which level I am and which division I should enter for Pole Art Performance Competition?
Please read the Division Descriptions and see which one suits you best. Please also refer to Scorecard and Scorecard Breakdown to understand the competition requirements. Your own evaluation of your current level counts. The organisers do not outline any compulsory or prohibited moves. This is because advanced performers may incorporate lower level moves and amateur performers may incorporate advanced level moves. The ability to perform certain tricks and spins doesn’t necessarily determine a competitor’s level.
This competition is judged on various technical and artistic factors. Please see Scorecard Breakdown.
Competitors will have to send a recent video to enter this competition. Our panel will watch all of the videos and change a competitor’s division if necessary. Competitors will be contacted directly by the organisers to discuss any division changes.

Division Descriptions

Amateur Solo & Amateur Duet Division Description:
I have trained on the pole for approximately 3-18 months.
I may or may not have previous experience in a regional competition at beginner / amateur level.
I am not a professional performer or experienced competitor in pole art/sport or a related discipline
If I do compete in a pole competition after entering Pole Art Performance Competition, I know I have to inform the organisers, in case I need to move up a division.

Intermediate Solo & Intermediate Duet Division Description:
I have trained on the pole for at least 12 months or more, or I have less than 12 months experience but I progressed fast through the levels.
I have recently competed in an intermediate level national or regional competition.
I have not actually competed, but I believe I am intermediate level after chatting with my instructor and comparing myself to my peers.
If I do compete in a pole competition after entering Pole Art Performance Competition, I know I have to inform the organisers, in case I need to move up a division.

Advanced Solo & Advanced Duet Division Description:
I have trained on the pole for at least 24 months or more.
I have recently competed in advanced/elite/professional level international, national or regional competitions.
I have not actually competed, but I believe I am at an advanced level after chatting with my instructor and comparing myself to my peers.
I may or may not perform on the pole professionally.
I am choosing to compete at advanced level to push myself.

Can I enter from another country?
Yes, both local and international competitors are invited to take part. International competitors are responsible for their own visa, travel and accommodation requirements. We can offer guidance on where to stay in the area.

Does it matter which studio I train at and what if I do not belong to a studio?
Everyone is welcome to enter on behalf of themselves or any studio! If you want to come and advertise your studio at the event please talk to the organisers.

What is required to enter Pole Art Performance Competition?
Video entry, entry form, payment, ID copy or passport copy, parental consent if under 18.

What are the video entry requirements?
Videos are due by the specified deadline and no later.
Videos may be up to two minutes long.
Videos do not have to contain the performance proposed for the final competition.
Videos should not be more than 12-months old as the organisers need to see recent footage.
Videos should display some of the elements on the scorecard, as seen under ‘Finals Information’.
Videos may show spinning and static pole moves but not necessarily both.
Videos should show the competitor’s highest level of ability, so the organisers can allocate competitors to the correct divisions.
Videos must clearly show the competitor at all times.
Videos must be uploaded to Youtube ‘Unlisted’ URL or Vimeo or Google Drive or WeTransfer on or before the entry deadline. You will be asked to enter your video URL on your entry form, please only enter when you have this. Emails containing video attachments will be disregarded.
Videos will not be displayed publicly by the organisers.
Videos will only be considered if the full entry form has been completed including payment, by the specified deadline.

Competitors should please note about video entries:
Video judges and organisers may change the competitor’s division having watched the video entry.
No feedback or scores will be given on video entries.
An organiser will be in direct contact with the competitor in case of a division alternation.
No refunds will be given in any circumstances.

Pole Art Performance Competition 2020 Finals Information

All finalists in Pole Art Performance Competition get free entry to Arnold Classic Africa 2020.

All spectators and chaperones will need a ticket to the exhibition to enter and watch the event. http://www.arnoldclassicafrica.com/.

All final competitors will receive communications directly from the organisers in the run up to the event. This will include music submission, prop approval, MC information deadlines, schedules, event details, entering the exhibition and other necessary information.

How many winners will there be and what are the prizes?
The top three places in each age group and each division will be awarded Arnold Classic Africa 2020 medals – Gold/First Place, Silver/Second Place, Bronze/Third Place. Trophies will be awarded to the overall winners of the whole event.

Judges will deliberate to decide upon the top female (over 16 years old) advanced level winner to qualify for the Pro-Division Pole Championship Series 2021, OH USA.

Judges will deliberate to decide upon the top male (over 16 years old) advanced level winner to qualify for the Open Championships at Pole Championship Series 2021, OH USA.

Judges will deliberate to decide upon the top duet (both must be over 16 years old) advanced level winners to qualify for the Open Championships at Pole Championship Series 2021, OH USA.

To learn more about Pole Championship Series at Arnold Classic, Columbus Ohio USA visit https://polechampionshipseries.com/ .

Music and Performance Time for Finalists in Pole Art Performance Competition
Music is due on or before the music deadline which is normally two-three weeks before the final event.
Competitor’s music and performance for the final competition may be between 3 minutes and 3 minutes and 30 seconds long (3 -3.30).
Music can be with or without words.
Explicit or offensive lyrics are prohibited.
Competitors may not reserve a piece of music for their exclusive use. If two competitors use the same piece of music they will be separated in the running order.
If music is over 3 minutes and 30 seconds long it will be stopped at the 3 minutes and 30 seconds mark during the performance.
Competitors must send their music via email, WeTransfer, OneDrive, Google drive, Dropbox or similar on or before the music submission deadline.
Music submitted must be in MP3 format.
Music must be titled with the competitor’s name and song name. E.g. JaneSmith_SongChoice.

Competitors may perform without shoes, or wear ballet shoes, jazz shoes or other suitable gymnastic style shoes.
No high heels may be worn.
Make-up and costume must be age-appropriate for competitors under 18.
Competitors may not perform in obvious underwear, lingerie or a G-string as their costume.
Female competitors may not perform topless.
Costumes may not expose the nipple (female), excessive breast/cleavage, buttocks or groin area.
Outer costumes such as jackets, capes, and hats may be removed, providing that the competitor is suitably dressed underneath.
Exotic style or sexually provocative performances are prohibited.
No rings are to be worn by competitors at any time while performing or competing.
No jewellery is to be worn by competitors at any time while performing or competing.
Costume, hair & make-up must not be negatively discriminatory, ethically, politically or morally questionable.
Competition costumes or props may not promote a dance studio, business or individual.
Studio advertising at the event may be arranged with an organiser.

Fire, liquid, powder or other potentially dangerous props are prohibited.
Props may be used if they can be set up and cleared away in under 2 minutes, and do not leave any mess or residue on the stage.
No props are allowed that could damage the poles, stage or cause harm to people.
No animal props or other morally, politically or ethically questionable props are allowed.
All props must be approved by the deadline which will be the same as the music submission deadline for finalists.

Grip Aids and Grip Enhancers
The following products are acceptable:
Infinity Grip (Recommended)

Chalk based grips like liquid chalk, powder chalk, Dry Hands, Mighty Grip etc.
-Gloves may be worn.
-Grip enhancers that leave a residue on the pole that cannot be easily cleaned off may not be used.

Competitors agree to be filmed throughout the competition at the venue before, during and after competing and any time they perform or rehearse on stage. All photography and footage remains the property of Arnold Classic Africa and the organisers. Competitors agree that all photography and footage can be used by Arnold Classic and the organisers for promotional, advertising and commercial purposes. Individual competitor photos may be available for sale after the event. The photographer will contact the competitors individually.

Judges will award competitors from 1-10 points per section on the scorecard.

Errors are deducted for per time or overall, as per the Scorecard.

The winner is the competitor in their division with the highest score. In the case of a tie, the winner will be the competitor with the least ‘Errors’ or the highest Artistic Score. Judges and organisers have the right to stop a performance at any time for breach of Rules and Regulations, health and safety concerns or for any other reason.

Duets are judged using the same scorecard as Solos, with the additional requirements being; Synchronicity and Partner Moves. See Scorecard and Scorecard Breakdown for details.

In the interest of fairness, at least two judges will judge each section of the Scorecard, excluding Errors (deductions) where there will be one judge.

Whenever possible judges will not judge their own students, friends or family members.

The judges’ decision is final and may not be entered into.

The winners will be announced at the end of the event, all competitors must be present at prize-giving in their performance costume.

Before and during the competition the competitors may not be in contact with the judges.

Any queries must be directed to the organisers or the person assigned by organisers.

Competitors may request to receive a copy of their Scorecard after the competition.

The overall ranking may be made public at the discretion of the organisers.

Scorecard for Pole Art Performance Competition

Choreography, originality, transitions on and off the pole. Synchronicity of Duets. 10 points
Movement off the pole. 10 points
Interpretation. 10 points
Costume, hair & make-up. 10 points
Stage presence and X-factor Bonus Star. ‘Star’
Clean movement, posture, lines and feet. 10 points
Overall strength. 10 points
Dynamic movement. 10 points 
Flexibility. 10 points
Difficulty level of Partner Moves (duet requirement only). 10 points 
ERRORS Less points
Costume malfunction (per time). -3 points
Fall (per time). -5 points
Slip/loss of balance (per time). -2 points
Sloppy feet (majority of performance). -5 points
Hand wiping during the performance (per time). -3 points
Contact with rigging (per time). -5 points
Stopping to ask for applause (per time). -3 Points 
Explicit sexual moves or inappropriate exposure. Disqualification

Scorecard Breakdown

Choreography, originality, transitions on and off the pole. Synchronicity of Duets.
The performance should appear balanced in terms of tricks, spins, transitions between pole moves and transitions between floor work movements. Competitors should present balanced choreography utilising both poles, the majority of the stage space, including, back of stage, front of stage, centre of stage and both sides of the stage. Originality relates to the competitors’ unique interpretation and expression of movements on and off the pole. Competitors should avoid repetition of the same moves and transitions, unless repetition itself specifically relates to the story being told within the piece. Competitors are encouraged to seek unique ways of presenting movements, to create original movements and surprise the judges with their innovation.

Duets must present some elements of choreography in synchronicity. If there is no synchronicity or it appears as if the duet should be in synchronicity and they are not, it will result in a lower score.

Movement off the pole.
Movement off the pole refers to the lines, postures and shapes created by the athlete on the surface of the stage. This can include dance choreography, sequences, gymnastics, and acrobatics. To achieve the highest point allocation, the competitor should create movements that reflect and work with the music and contribute to the theme of the piece. Off pole movements should demonstrate flexibility, strength, and dynamics whilst being engaging and entertaining. Movement between poles should be creative and flowing.

Interpretation refers to the competitor’s ability to interpret the music. Judges take into account the competitor’s facial expressions, their emotions and the creation of a character, story or theme portrayal. The performance should reflect the light, shade, and emotion of the music. There should be a connection between the performer and the music. The choreography should work with the beat and phrase of the music.

Costume, hair & make-up.
Costume, hair, and make-up must show thought and effort. Competitors must choose an appropriate costume while taking into consideration the style, cut and decoration suitable for a pole competition at an international sporting event.
Costume, hair, and make-up must be age-appropriate for minor competitors.
Costume, hair, and make-up is reflective of the performance, theme/story/character, and music.

Stage presence and X-Factor ‘Bonus Star’.
The Bonus Star will only be given out by a judge who is truly moved by a competitor’s performance. Judges will go by their feeling! Competitors should project confidence, charisma, and authority while being poised, engaging and captivating.
In the event of a tie, the Bonus Star contributes to the overall Artistic Score and will help the judges deliberate upon the final winner.

Clean movement, posture, lines and feet.
Movements should appear clean and effortless from start to finish. Extension, alignment, body positioning, and placement of the limbs are technically and aesthetically correct.
The angle at which a move is presented is ideal for the judges to view. Arms, legs, hands, feet, toes or fingers must not appear clenched, or out of correct alignment.
Lower scores shall be awarded in Execution for poor lines, lack of extension and sloppy feet.
Competitors must note that ‘Sloppy feet’ also falls under Errors on the Scorecard and will therefore be deducted for by the Errors judge.

Overall strength.
Overall strength refers to the power of the arms, core, and legs. In order to display the highest level of difficulty to the judges, the athlete should perform upper body, core, and lower body strength tricks and combinations. Deadlifting into positions will contribute to higher strength scores. Holding and controlling strength moves for three or more seconds will display a higher level of difficulty.

Dynamic movement.
Dynamic movement refers to the competitor’s ability to execute momentum-driven, explosive and powerful moves on the pole, or when mounting or dismounting the pole. The competitor must show intentionally dynamic movements using the spinning and/or static pole. Dynamic movement can include leg/body switches, drops, catches, tumbles, descents, swings, powerful re-grips, flips, jumps on and jumps off the pole. Spins that take the body far away from the pole and/or involve re-grips and obvious changes in the body position are also considered to be dynamic movement. Combining dynamic movements in seamless, rapid succession will also contribute to a higher score.

Flexibility refers to the range of motion of the legs, back, and shoulders. In order to display the highest level of difficulty to the judges, the competitor should perform tricks, combinations, and transitions with full extension and mobility.

Difficulty level of Partner Moves (Duet requirement only).
Partner Moves refer to tricks, transitions, and skills both on and off the pole that could not be executed without the partners physically relying on each other. Timing, flow, and ease of Partner Moves will be taken into consideration by the judges.
Partners should equally ‘base’ (be the lifting partner) and ‘fly’(be the lifted partner).

Additional Duet Guidelines.
Duets must consider their overall synchronicity throughout the whole routine to achieve the highest scores. This can include synchronicity of moves on separate poles, on the same pole or on the floor. Duet performances may include identically timed tricks and movements or similar/different tricks and movements that complement each other visually.
Duets must be able to move and transition around each other in a fluid way to react accordingly to each other’s movements.

Errors will be deducted for by the Errors judge. Errors are per time or overall as stated on the scorecard.

Scoring Rubric.

0 1-2 3-4 5-6 7-8 9-10
Absent Poor Average Good Great  Excellent

Staging, Poles & Spacing for the finals of Pole Art Performance Competition
2 x 4m high 42mm. Powder-coated. There will be at least 3m in between and around the poles.
For solos, there will be 1 x static pole and 1 x spinning pole. The static pole will be on the competitor’s right and the spinning pole will be on the competitor’s left, when standing on the stage looking out to the audience.
Duets may select either both static or spinning, or use the above-mentioned

Competitor Rules and Regulations
The following Rules and Regulations form part of the agreement entered into by all competitors taking part in Pole Art Performance Competition 2020.
Any breach of Competitor Rules and Regulations results in competitor disqualification.
Competitors under 18 years old must be chaperoned by a parent or guardian. Parents and guardians must purchase tickets to enter the exhibition.
The competitor must submit a copy of a valid ID document/ Passport upon entry.
Payments must be received in order to enter the competition.
Drugs and alcohol are prohibited before and during the competition and prize-giving ceremony.
Exotic style or sexually provocative performances are prohibited.
Nudity and sexually explicit actions are prohibited during performances and at all times during the event.
Costume, hair & make-up, routines or actions must not be negatively discriminatory, ethically, politically or morally questionable.
Respectful treatment of other competitors, judges, organisers, venue staff, helpers and spectators is expected at all times.
All competitors must be present at prize-giving in their performance costume.
All competitors must be willing to represent the competition and all affiliated parties/sponsors in a positive light before, during and after the competition.
All competitors must observe Costume, Hair & Make-up and Grip Aid Rules.
The judges’ decision is final and may not be entered into.
Competitors may not be knowingly pregnant on the day of competition.
Competitors must show up on time. If late, participation may be refused.
No refunds for entry fees are given under any circumstances.

Rights of the Organisers
Organisers reserve the right to:
Change the judging criteria and division information.
Change the rules and regulations.
Change the division in which a competitor is taking part.
Record and photograph the competition and distribute the material.
Eliminate videos or photographs that are unsuitable for publication.
Change the guidelines, divisions, rules, and regulations of the competition.
Changes made to Rules & Regulations and divisions can be made up until one week before the competition.
Written notice must be provided to the competitors to inform them of the changes.
The organisers do not take responsibility for any loss, damages or injury to the competitors when training for the competition, or on the day of the competition.

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