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🎉🔥 Celebrate Your Wins 🔥🎉

Contemplating the incredible journey that lies behind us, I am filled with a sense of gratitude and pride. This picture, seemingly just a snapshot, encapsulates the depth of our experiences and the lessons we've learned along the way.

Man holding a trophy as a champion and winner
Celebrate Your Wins

In the year 2022, we embarked on a journey with a group of dancers who were relatively new to the scene. We decided to enter them into a new competition format called the Dance Sport Club League (DSCL), right here in South Africa. Our team was decent, and we prepared ourselves to the best of our abilities. However, despite our efforts, we found ourselves in the last position.

But rather than letting this setback discourage us, we chose to view it as fuel for our determination. I vividly remember reaching out to my head dance coach for Street dance, expressing our unwavering commitment to nothing less than a top three placing in the following season. We set the bar high, declaring that third place would be the worst result we would accept.

At the start of 2023, we made a conscious decision to narrow our focus. Our aim was to help our dancers earn national colors in dance. Official recognition of dance as a sport brought with it a newfound sense of purpose and a desire to stand shoulder to shoulder with more mainstream sports like rugby, soccer, cricket, gymnastics, and netball. We wanted to be recognized for the immense fitness, skills, and dedication that dance requires.

To achieve our goals, we honed in on two leagues - the DSCL & the IDO (International Dance Organisation) championships, maximizing our opportunities and odds. We understood that reaching provincial, national, and international levels would require our dancers to navigate a series of qualifying events with a narrowed focus.

But we didn't stop at setting goals. We made tangible changes to propel our progress forward. Here are a few steps we took:

1️⃣ We tripled the amount of training time invested in honing our team members' skills including additional fitness and mental training.

2️⃣ We sought out and thoroughly understood the exact requirements needed to tailor our training towards our desired outcomes. We studied the rules, styles, and what we could expect at the international world championships.

3️⃣ We continued to motivate and inspire our dancers, building upon the momentum gained during the initial success of the season.

Such a focused journey, though rewarding, is not without its challenges. We faced a high attrition rate due to the demands we placed on our artistic athletes. Many talented individuals had to step away as they couldn't commit to the required time and expectations. However, our determination remained unwavering.

We invested in innovative training methods, meticulous preparation, and a well-structured approach to maximize our time spent working towards our objectives. We sought fresh perspectives by bringing in new individuals who would stretch and challenge our team. We conducted assessments, providing raw feedback to help each individual understand where they needed to improve in order to contribute to the team as a whole. Some members initially fell short on dedication, but they stepped up their game and eventually became valuable members of the competition team.

This journey was not one we embarked on alone. We recognized the role parents played in our success and thus increased our communication with them. We held more meetings to keep them in the loop, understanding that they cover expenses such as competition entry fees and travel arrangements, not to mention bringing their children to training.

It's important to acknowledge that we also lost some incredibly talented team members along the way. We pushed them beyond their comfort zones, knowing that growth often lies just beyond the boundaries of familiarity. While this path wasn't for everyone, we firmly believed in their potential and desired to witness their personal growth.

Undeniably, this journey hasn't been easy. Some weeks, our dancers excelled, while others left them in tears due to disappointing results. Yet, we refused to place blame on judges or anyone else. Instead, we returned to training, pouring even more effort into our work. Life, after all, is a mixture of victories and defeats. As a team, we continued to persevere, understanding the power of collective collaboration and unwavering focus on our desired goal.

In August 2023, we achieved one of our goals. After an arduous season filled with competition fixtures, we emerged at the top of the table of the DSCL Gauteng Provincial competition league. From a mere 84 points in season one to an astonishing 798 points in season two, we were elated. 🏆

In celebration of this accomplishment, I shared a social media story featuring the quote from Matthew 20:16: "So the last will be first, and the first will be last." The verse came to mind immediately after realizing that we had indeed accomplished what we set out to do – securing a top three placing.

Over and above that, we had many dancers qualify for the IDO World Championships in Hip Hop Dance. In our first season of competing in this league, we had the second highest contingency in the country qualify for this prestigious international event. Our dancers were now international and representatives of the country. Official Protea Colours were earned!

Throughout this journey, I have consistently emphasized the importance of setting specific, measurable, and targeted goals, and tirelessly working towards them. Our dancers, these incredible kids, listened to us even when we pushed them to their limits, raised our voices at them, and demanded countless hours of practice. They put in the work, and the result speaks for itself.

But this journey is about so much more than just dancing. It is about personal growth, resilience, and the power of teamwork. We are not merely teaching dance; we are teaching life lessons through dance.

Every challenge we face is an opportunity for growth.

I have unwavering belief in each and every dancer that steps through our doors. Together, we can achieve amazing things. With the power of focus, we can delve so much deeper and achieve even greater things. So, let's keep dancing, keep pushing, and keep striving for greatness.

Quintus Jansen 🌟


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