1981 - 2019

Age categories historically for IDO World Championships have been as follows:


Mini Kids  (7 & under)

Children  (11 & under)

Junior  (12-15)

Adult  (16 & over)

Adult 2  (31 & over)

Senior  (50 & over)

*age is determined as of Dec 31 of the competition year

2020 and beyond

Age rule changes are coming into effect in the 2020 competition year.  This is good news!  New age categories will be:


Mini Kids  (7 & under)

Children  (12 & under)

Junior 1  (13-14)

Junior 2  (15-16)

Adult 1  (17 & over)

Adult 2  (31 & over)

Senior (50 & over)

*age is determined as of Dec 31 of the competition year


Mini Kids  (7 & under)

Children  (12 & under)

Junior  (13-16)

Adult 1  (17 & over)

Adult 2  (31 & over)

Senior  (50 & over)

*age is determined as of Dec 31 of the competition year



1)   CHARACTERISTICS AND MOVEMENTS: · Performed technique must be within character of dance technique that is listed in the rules under IDO Street dance department: Hip Hop, Disco Dance , Break Dance, Electric Boogie and Techno. · The performance presented by dancers can be done using the listed techniques as they decide so: either in a pure version or as a mix. Example: The performance that is being presented only in Hip hop dance technique will be equally adjudicated as a performance that mixes Hip Hop, Disco Dance and Techno. 

2)   All pieces MUST have a show case, theme or idea that MUST be clearly visible throughout the whole performance. ·  NOTE: Musicality, variety of dance and dance patterns, originality, together with a well-done and well performed stage and individual/ORIGINAL choreography will be highly evaluated. It is very important to present harmony of idea, music, dance, choreography, costumes and props. Presentation and the entire image will be evaluated.   

3)   In Children’s division: 

a. Any kind of jumps from props at the height of more than 1 m is prohibited (jumps from props can be equally dangerous as lifts) 

b. Break Acrobatics are not allowed (head spins, head slides).

4)   Acrobatic Movements: permitted as outlined under General Provisions of Street Dance Disciplines. Any floor gymnastic combinations that are composed of more than three (3) acrobatic elements should be kept to a minimum. 

Lifts: permitted as outlined under General Provisions of Street Dance Disciplines. 

NOTE: Lifts are not permitted in Children age division

5)   MUSIC: Dancers dance to their own music. No limits. Music genre needs to support the choreography that has to be done 100% in street disciplines as presented in the rulebook.

6)   Props: permitted as outlined under General Provisions of Street Dance Disciplines. One solid piece must not exceed the dimensions of a standard door (200x80 cm). In case of bigger size of props the team needs to contact the Organizer prior to the event (no later than 14 days before the beginning of the competition).

You can see an example HERE and HERE and HERE 



Show Dance in the broadest sense is based either on any Jazz/Lyrical, Ballet and/or Modern and Contemporary dance technique.    Other dance disciplines can also be incorporated but cannot dominate.   The dancer's personal interpretation should be clearly evident when using any of these disciplines or styles.   Show Dance allows the use of lifts (except for Children), acrobatics, props, lip-sync and other theatrical effects.   All Show Dance presentations shall be based on a concept, story, theme or idea. There must be a title of the Show. The concept, story, theme or idea must be fully understandable and will be expressed by means of dance movements that adhere to the piece being presented, along with being creative, imaginative and original. The piece must have Show Value and entertain the audience.   

Acrobatic movements are permitted as outlined in General Provisions of Performing Arts. Acrobatic movements will be evaluated under show criteria and must never dominate and must be in harmony with the idea or theme. Stage props are permitted as outlined under General Provisions of Performing Arts. Musicality, variety of dance and patterns, originality, total performance and individual choreography will be evaluated. It is very important to present harmony of idea, music, dance, choreography, costume and props in the presentation, as the entire image will be used in evaluating the performance.  

See an example HERE and HERE and HERE

Difference between Showdance and Jazz

The difference between Show Dance and Jazz is very difficult, but not impossible, to define. Jazz Dance styles range from the early 1920s to the present, and most Jazz Dance pieces are created using pure dance without consideration to theme or story. This is an ever-evolving Performing Art dance, and one could very readily argue the point that all of the Street dances contain some elements of Jazz. How do we draw the line between Jazz and Street Dance? Definitely the music. The music dictates the style. Does that mean that Hip-Hop or Break Dance music cannot be used in a Jazz piece? No, because the style of the dance dictates what discipline it actually is. Therefore, a Jazz Dance piece can be done to Hip-Hop, Break Dance or Electric Boogie music, but never a Hip-Hop, Break Dance or Electric Boogie to Jazz music. Since there is no specific style of music identifiable as Jazz Dance or Show Dance, music cannot be used to determine if the discipline is correct. However: the difference in styles can be used to make this determination. Although Show Dance pieces may be based on a theme or story, there are many variables that exist. A Show Dance piece can be based on emotions, color and design, or even one word, such as ‘devastation’ or ‘jubilation.’ Jazz Dance does not have to convey any of the above criteria, and may be done based on pure dance only. For instance, a piece danced to ‘Bolero’ might be based on movement formation, color and costume. Another piece danced to the same or different music might be built on a theme of floating dancers, be enhanced by costume de- sign and originality, and feature terrific use of the music. Would a piece danced to ‘Bolero’ do well in a Jazz Dance competition? The answer to that would be in the eyes of the beholder, but a strong Jazz Dance piece would certainly give such a piece a run for its money if the former was not based on true Jazz technique.

Lyric or Modern may be the base technique for either Show Dance or Jazz Dance. It all depends on how much of a ‘show’ the piece really is. A straight lyric piece, performed in a Show Dance division to Whitney Houston, without a theme or story line, would not do very well, because the show value of the 4-D system would receive a low mark. When judging an IDO competition where the 3-D system of separate evaluations is used for technique, composition and image, the show quality of the routine may enter into all three of these separate dimensions. The ability to use technique to enhance the theme or story being told is very important. The choreography and the way the dancer performs it must be of show quality, and the image that the dancer creates is also very important to the show value of a given piece. But Adjudicators should not be influenced by the show value of a Jazz Dance routine. Their marks for technique should be based purely on technique, choreography purely on choreography, and image marks should be based on the total look of the performer


Jazz Dance Styles: 

Primitive: This dance form stemmed from early African Folk Dances that were done by slaves brought to America from Africa, West Indies, Cuba, Panama and Haiti

Early: Originated via the music of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. Dances included the Two-Step or Cakewalk, and later became the Grizzly Bear, Bunny Hug, Turkey Trot, and Texas Tommy. This evolved into the fast music and dances of the 1920’s, the One-Step, Lindy Hop, Charleston and Black Bottom.

Musical Comedy / Theatre Jazz: These forms of Jazz became very popular via movies / theatre during the 1930s and 1940s. Many dance forms were incorporated in Musical Comedy Jazz. Ballet with “On Your Toes”, and Modern Dance in “Oklahoma” and “Brigadoon”. During the 1950s and 1960s, dance became an integral part of telling the story in Musical Theatre, as illustrated in musicals such as “Flower Drum Song”, “Destry Rides Again”, “West Side Story” and “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers”. In 1978, the musical “Dancing” showed that the songs and books were secondary to the dancing; in fact, they are almost non-existent. 

Contemporary: Primarily performed to music of the day, it began in the late 1950s to the music of Contemporary Jazz musicians like Dizzy Gillespie, Art Tatum and Dave Brubeck. 

Today’s Jazz Dance: This discipline may be danced using many different styles and tempos, using themes based on Afro-Cuban, Oriental, Spanish or other national themes. It may be performed as a character, such as Cowboy, Sailor, Clown, etc. It may also be abstract in nature. Lyrical Jazz, performed to such music as Bette Midler’s “Wind Beneath My Wings”, may be included in Jazz Dance Discipline 

NOTE: Contemporary Ballet should not be confused with Jazz Dance, and may not compete in this discipline. Other contemporary styles such as Hip-Hop, Disco, Break Dance and Electric Boogie may be incorporated, but must never control / dominate Jazz Dance performances.

1)  Characteristics and Movement: Jazz Dance is a multi-faceted art form. The above-mentioned types of Jazz Dance are examples of what is permissible in this category.   The entire routine must consist of Jazz work. Jazz technique, turns, jumps isolations, stretch, as well as use of port de bras, legs and upper body. Timing and rhythm will be considered in marking. Suitable footwear must be worn. 

2)  Acrobatic Movements: In Jazz Dance limited acrobatics will be allowed as long as a body part is touching the floor, and does not dominate the routine. 

3)  Lifts: Permitted as outlined under General Provisions in Adult and Junior divisions. 

      NOTE: Lifts are NOT permitted in the Children’s age divisions. 

4)  Stage Props: Hand, stage and floor props will be allowed under the following conditions: Clothing: All costume accessories, such as hats, scarves, gloves, belts, etc., may be worn if they are an integral part of the costume. They may be taken off, exchanged or discarded, but not left to litter the stage. Meaning, the dancer cannot leave the stage at the end of the routine leaving clothing behind. If a dancer discards or drops a scarf on the state, they must pick it up and take it off when they leave. Hand Props: All hand props such as canes, umbrellas, hand bags, brief cases, mirrors, flags, etc., may be used as long as they are an integral part and used throughout the routine. They may be set down on the floor as long as it remains part of the routine and picked up when leaving the stage at the end of the routine. Hand props can never be used as floor props. In other words, you cannot enter the stage with an umbrella, set it on the floor, dance your entire routine without utilizing the umbrella and then pick it up at the end of the routine and leave the stage. Floor Props: Necessary floor props such as a chair, stool, box, ladder, etc., may be carried on by a dancer in one trip, but must be an integral part of the routine and utilized throughout the entire performance. Items used to decorate or embellish the stage are not permitted. The dancer must carry the floor prop off the state at the end of the routine. Scenic or stage props: Any items such as a scenic background, back drop, tree or other such prop, used to create a scene or embellish the stage are not permitted. 

5)  Lip-sync is not allowed in Jazz Dance.



Time limit is one (1) minute minimum for male and female solo variations, maximum 2:15 minutes. All other time limits see in General Provisions of Performing Arts. 

Characteristics and Movement: Classical Ballet is the most formal of the ballet styles; it adheres to traditional ballet technique. There are variations relating to area of origin, such as Russian ballet, French ballet, British ballet and Italian ballet. The Vaganova method, named after Agrippina Vaganova and the Cecchetti method, named after Enrico Cecchetti are Russian and Italian respectively and derive from the original French method. Classical ballet is best known for its unique features and techniques, such as pointe work, turn-out of the legs, and high extensions; its graceful, flowing, precise movements; and its ethereal qualities. This discipline must be performed using the Classical Ballet Technique and style and may be performed in soft ballet slippers or Pointe shoes. Although choreography may be of a modern nature, it may not deviate from what is commonly known as Classical Ballet. Lyric, Modern and Modern Jazz pieces may not be performed in this discipline. 

Pointe work is not allowed in the Children's category. 

Acrobatic Movements: Not permitted in the Ballet discipline.

Lifts: Permitted (and encouraged) as outlined under General Provisions of Performing Arts. Any lifts used must remain in the Classical Ballet tradition, and may include drop-falls, supported turns and jumps resulting in catches. However, all dances are in a constant evolution and growth, so experimental and original choreography is encouraged.

Stage Props: Permitted as outlined under General Provisions of Performing Arts but dancers cannot use cumbersome scenic material and must carry on and off the stage themselves in one trip.


Modern dance is an artistic form with many styles that has undergone development over a relatively long period of time. Modern dance is a more relaxed, free style of dance in which choreographer’s uses emotions and moods to design their own steps, in contrast to ballet’s structured code of steps. It has a deliberate use of gravity, whereas ballet strives to be light and airy. 

The development of modern dance was the logical consequence of the dancing styles that existed at the start of the 20th century, when the modern dancers of that period attempted to break free from established ballet forms, which they considered to be stiff, strict and restrictive and therefore they started searching for new trends and techniques to give dance a new direction. 

This particular dance discipline concerns using modern dancing techniques that were created for the most part during the first half of the 20th century by renowned dance teachers and choreographers, /e.g. Martha Graham, José Limon, Alvin Ailey, Merce Cunningham, Lester Horton and a host of others on the American continent, and Kurt Jooss, Mary Wigman, Hanya Holm and many others in Europe.

 In view of the fact that all dance remains in a constant state of movement and development, this does not mean that we have to use only the aforementioned techniques in their original forms.   On the contrary, it is also about using contemporary trends in modern dance techniques that either goes back to the foundations established by the aforementioned dance instructors or we can use totally new, experimental and original concepts for modern dance. Contemporary dance brings new information about body and how the body works, offers new quality of movement, new shapes of body in area, brings new composition process and space for experiment.

1)   Characteristics and Movement: the entire routine must consist of modern dance techniques and current trends, and should correspond with age categories and the movement skills of the dancers. Contemporary Ballet should not be confused with Modern Dance, and may not compete in this discipline. Other contemporary styles such as Hip-Hop, Disco, Break Dance and Electric Boogie may be incorporated, but must never control / dominate Modern dance performances. 

The main point of assessment for this discipline will be the level of the dance movements carried out, as well as the theme and story line. The story, the building of a plot, is possible, but not so much emphasized here as, for example, for Show dance. It is primarily about pictures, moods. 

In Modern Dance, a story, theme, idea or concept may be used but must always be in good taste for children, junior and adult situations, but human situations, especially those dealing with intimate or personal relationships should acceptable to viewing by all ages.

2)   Acrobatics and Lifts: Acrobatic movements are allowed, but should only be used to enhance the routine. Gymnastic lines are not allowed (multiple gymnastic moves, travelling from corner to corner). Modern and Contemporary Dance should not look like an acrobatic dance routine.  Lifts are allowed in Junior and Adult age divisions and are prohibited in the Children age division

3)   Props and Backgrounds: Stage props are allowed to the extent that the stage setting for the choreography does not overshadow the dance itself. Backgrounds are prohibited. 

4)   Clothing: aesthetic, tasteful and age division appropriate.



1)   Characteristics and Movement: Although the primary emphasis should be on the harmonious blend of the dancer’s footwork (sound), many variables exist. All forms of tap will compete against each other, such as: Rhythm, Hoofing, Buck and Wing, Waltz Clog, Military, Precision Kick Line, Latin and Musical Theatre.

2)   Jingle taps, double taps or double claques are not permitted.

3)   The music must not contain prerecorded taps.   Personal amplification devices are not permitted

4)   No more than 30 seconds of a cappella or tacet (silence) may be used in any one routine. The absence of music must occur within the music and not at the beginning or end. “Stop Time” is an open part of a measure of music, not played but silent, with some notes being played. “A Capella” is an open phrase of multiple measures in length, but completely absent (silent) of any/all music. 

NOTE: Music must be played at the beginning and end of the music and the A Capella must be no longer than 30 seconds. A Capella can also be defined as “Tacit.”

5)   The dancer’s taps and the music must be clearly audible to the audience and adjudicators. NOTE: The Organizer must make sure the stage has adequate floor microphones and speakers to make this possible.

6)   Acrobatic Movements that are an integral part of the routine are permitted as outlined under General Provisions of Performing Arts, but will not enhance the dancer’s score.

7)   Regarding health and safety issues in Tap dance, it is not allowed to dance or perform toe work (dancing on pointe) in the Children’s age division for longer than one beat of music. The definition of this being dancing or standing on the tips of the toes in weight-bearing steps on one or both feet.  Toe work/dancing on pointe will be for no longer than one beat of the music on one or both feet in Children’s Division. 

NOTE: No more than one beat and NO weight bearing pointe work at any time. This is stated strictly to clarify the rule already in effect