The Latin American competitor must have all of the same physical and artistic requirements as detailed in the page on competitive Ballroom dancing.
Where the ballroom section shows very high levels of body discipline in their ability to maintain their shape, or silhouette, and body contact with their partner, latin dancers have many solo sections as well as "together " variations in their routines. Being able to synchronise with each other and the music, often from metres apart, requires a high level of sympathy with and for each other, to the point where you can actually feel the moods and emotions of your partner. It goes without saying that lots & lots of practice helps!
Where the ballroom style is elegant and classical in nature, latin is exotic, exciting and a whole lot sexier!
Each dance has its own unique character and the competitor is required to portray these characteristics when performing the dance in question.
Rhumba is the slowest of the five dances and is the most sensuous. The movements are sinuous and fluid, coupled with fast movements and stops etc., all performed in a romantic, intimate, sexy manner, which is designed to enhance the dance's reputation as The Dance of Love.
Samba originates in Brazil and shows the mood of Carnival.
Cha Cha Cha is very much a dance of today. Greatly influenced by the music of today, much of which has a latin flavour, it could be called the Street Dance of the latin field.
Paso Doble, The Dance of Spain, represents the Bull Fight. Most of the movements are similar to and are based upon, cape and flamenco movements and are very Spanish in nature. In fact, Paso Doble is the term used for the march music, which is played when the matador and his entourage enter the Bull Ring.
Jive is a development of Swing, Jitterbug and of course has been influenced by Rock & Roll in latter years. Although considered as the Fun Dance, it requires very high energy levels and as the last dance, places a great strain on the stamina of the competitors.
Competitive Latin American is a high energy, exiting and breathtaking spectacle, which has been known to have audiences on their feet applauding the participants, even before the conclusion of the final dance.
A WOW of a spectacle.