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SOAR Guidelines:

We are so excited to have you join us for a SOAR Aerial Competition!

Aerialists and Studios are welcome to participate in as many routines as they would like. Please read the below criteria regarding to learn more about our Competition Platforms, Age Divisions, Performance Categories, Judging, and so much more.

Disclaimer: You must be affiliated with a registered studio in order to compete in SOAR’s Aerial Competitions. 


Age Divisions


​Petit: 7-9    Juniors: 10-12    Teens: 13-15    Seniors: 16 -19     Adult (1): 20-35      Adult (2): 36-50      Adult (3): 55+

For Duo, Trio and Group Routines, please drop the average decimal when applying. SOAR may split categories containing more than ten routines into two groups. This will be based on both the average age in the group, as well as the individual ages within the group.​ Any routines with an aerialist over the age of 20 will compete in the adult division, regardless of the average age of the group.  Any instructors, assistant teachers, or studio owner over the age of 20 may compete for an adjudicated award, but will not qualify for overall awards. Teachers are individuals who are compensated for teaching classes and/or choreography for 3 or more hours per week. Teachers must compete in the adult age division.

The age of the performer will be determined as of January 1 of the competitions year. For duets, trios, and all groups including production, please average the ages of all the performers. If the average age contains a decimal; drop the decimal. (For example, if the average age is 12.7 drop the .7. The average age would be 12 and that routine would compete as a junior entry.)  Duet, Trio and Group entries cannot compete in an age division more than one division younger than the oldest aerialist; regardless of the average age. For example, if an 18 year old (senior) aerialists in a group with an average age of 10 (junior), the dance would be scored in the teen age category, since the teen category is one level down from the oldest aerialist in the group.

Entry Types

·       Solo– 1 performer

·       Duet– 2 performers

·       Trio– 3 performers

·       Small Group– 4-8 performers

·       Large Group– 9-15 performers

·       Super Group– 16 and up performers

·       Production– unlimited amount of performers and must have a theme

The difference between Supergroup and Production is a Supergroup routine may depict a theme but should not depict a story-line, plot or narrative, while a Production routine must depict a story-line, plot or narrative throughout the routine or have resemblance to a musical, play, film, book etc.

Competition Platforms



The Competitive Platform is for students with less than three hours of aerial per week. These students are new to performing and competing.



The Advanced Platform is for students with 3-6 hours of aerial per week. These students are more experienced and have a few years of performing competition experience.


The Elite Platform is for aerialists with 6+ hours of aerial per week. These students are very experienced and have several years of performing and competing experience.

Routines containing a combination of levels such as, Duets, Trios, and Groups Acts should be entered in the level in which the majority of the aerialist fall. We expect all studio owners and directors to give honest level placement for all performers and groups. Routines that are visibly under-placed will be moved to the appropriate category by the judges. All decisions are final.



The Showcase Category is a non-leveled showcase category for anyone who wishes to perform, but does not wish to receive feedback or judging. Performers of all ages and levels will be featured in this category with no judge feedback given. This is ideal for performers who love to perform for the sake of performing, who dislike competitions, or who want to dip their toes into a competition environment. We understand how nerve wracking it can be to put yourself out there, especially if you’re new to performing or to an apparatus in general.



This category is also a non-leveled category, but it includes judges' feedback on the performance. Performers will perform within the Showcase Category; however your piece will also be judged using our general judging criteria. Our judges will provide you feedback on your piece as well as their opinion on what level you would have fit into for your chosen apparatus. This is a great option for those who may be new to competing and want to see how they do with being judged and receiving feedback but do not wish to be placed against other performers at this time.



Performance Categories


The height of the Sling, Lyra & Trapeze Apparatus will be adjusted by age category. Aerialist may use rosin when performing on any apparatus and may use liquid chalk when performing on the hoop and trapeze. Lyra skills incorporating the spanset are encouraged. There will be two lyra sizes available for performers to choose from. 

Sling - Rigged as a loop from a singular point with a swivel.

Silks - 15 yards of medium stretch fabric will be hung from a single point with a swivel from 18 ft, with 8 ft of excess fabric on the ground.


Lyra - A steel hoop rigged as a single tab, with an auto locking carabiner connecting the hoop to a 6-8 ft span set. Hoop will be wrapped in smooth cable tape.


Trapeze - Both thimbles will be attached to a singular rigging point with a swivel. The elbows will be padded and wrapped with a soft suede fabric and the bar will be taped with smooth cable tape.


Open - Incorporating more than one aerial apparatus during the same performance. Example: Tying your Silk into a Sling Knot with your feet or hands, then continuing the routine as if the Silks apparatus is a Sling OR attaching a Silk to the bottom of a Lyra.


Acro - A routine containing acrobatic technique with dance steps to connect moves.

*Please note that SOAR will not be hosting competitions for non-traditional aerial apparatuses at this time. Please contact SOAR directly regarding any question about non-traditional apparatus being offered in the future. For more information on rigging safety, visit our rigging page.




Props must stand alone or be held by performers. Props will have two minutes to load on and off stage for Solo, Duet, Trio, and Small Group Entries. For Large Group, Supergroup, and Production entries, props will have four minutes to load on and off stage. If more time is needed, please inform us prior to the competition. Please Note SOAR will allow studios to purchase more time if needed per routine.

Time Limits


Solo/Duet/Trio  (1-3)              4 Minute Maximum

Small Group  (4-8)                   4 Minute Maximum

Large Group  (9-14)                 5 Minute Maximum

Supergroup  (15+)                    6 Minute Maximum

Production  (15+)                      8 Minute Maximum

Judging and Awards


Each competition will have three experienced judges critiquing every routine based on technique, execution, choreography, skill difficulty and presentation including performance, musicality, overall appeal and costume.


Each entry will be adjudicated and will receive an award based on the scoring system per level of competition.  Overall awards will be presented to the top scoring entries in each level of competition.


Our Judges and SOAR staff will also be looking for the following awards: Entertainment, Costume, and Choreography. Every completion we will give out a special award to the performance that embodies what SOAR stands for though the modesty, talent, intentionality, creativity of the overall performance.


All solos, duet/trios and groups will be judged on a point system. In the case of a tie, the Judges will select the highest technical score.  Overall appeal and performance will be averaged if a tie still exists. Each studio will receive a digital video recording of the judges' critiques of their studio's entries.  Judges scores may also be accessed online. All scoring is completed electronically through DanceComp Genie. In the event of technical malfunctioning, judge scores/feedback may be provided in another format and emailed to the studio within a week of the competition. 


Title Winners


Our Title Winners are selected for each age division (Petit through Senior) from all solo platforms (Competitive, Advanced, Elite) at every SOAR Competition. Titleists will show intentional stage presence, give 110% to their routine, and have outstanding showmanship. SOAR Titleists will be announced and awarded during the On-Stage Award Ceremonies.

There is no additional entry fee or registration for our Title Category!


                                               Competitive         Advanced            Elite 


         Diamond                      277-300               282-300               287-300

        Elite Platinum               260-276               266-281               272-286


         Platinum                       243-259               251-265               257-271

        Elite Gold                     226-242               236-250               242-256

        Gold                             200-225               200-235               200-241



​If you have any additional questions please do not hesitate to contact us at

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