Competition Guidelines

Entries, Payments and Deadlines

All competing athletes must be listed on your entry. By submitting an entry, you agree that you have read, understood and accepted all competition rules, guidelines and terms.

The closing dates for competition entries are as specified on the Event Calendar listed in the competition section of our website.

Fully completed entries must be received by the specific closing date for the discounted Early Bird or On Time rate to be applied. Full payment must be received within 72 hours of the specific closing date for that rate to be confirmed.

Failure to comply may result in a higher rate being applied or your entry refused. Please be aware that late entries after the final closing date will only be accepted if approved by a BCA Director.

The contract of sale for entries is between the club/programme and BCA Cheer & Dance. We will not accept individual payments from athletes/parents.

Schools and Universities may secure payment using a purchase order number. Please allow sufficient time for funds to be released by the closing date, especially if an invoice is required in advance.

We reserve the right to close a competition early once capacity is reached with the venue.

 

Crossovers

For each additional team/routine that an athlete competes in within the same programme at a competition, a cheaper crossover fee will apply instead of another entry fee.

An athlete can also compete with more than one programme at the same competition in any division, however this is not a crossover and the athlete will need to pay two separate entry fees with each programme.  Also, the athlete cannot compete for both programmes in the same division.

We aim to give a minimum of 10 minutes between performances times so please bear this in mind when allowing crossovers within your teams, especially if a change of uniform is required.

The BCA also recommends that coaches are mindful of the total number of routines that an individual is performing in for health and safety purposes.  Please see the SCUK Age Grid for additional crossover restrictions.

 

Substitutions

Free substitutions are allowed provided:

  • The substitution is a direct replacement and the change does not invoke a change in division (e.g. a male replacing a female which would force a change to a co-ed division).
  • The new athlete is already a registered member of your programme and has had their age verified.

Any other changes will require approval from a BCA director and may incur a £100 admin fee.

All substitution requests must be sent to [email protected] for approval, and your entry updated before you compete. Any athlete found to be competing on a team when not listed on that roster will result in the team either receiving a 2 point deduction or disqualification.

 

Division Changes

Division changes are allowed free of charge provided the BCA is notified before the running order is released. Any changes requested after this time will be deferred to a BCA director for approval. If the change can be fulfilled within the event timeline a £100 admin fee will be payable.

 

Cancellations/Refunds

Teams or Individual athletes withdrawn from competition due to injury, illness, or other reason may do so at any time. However only withdrawals received via email to [email protected] prior to the final closing date by the coach (or nominated contact as shown on the eRegistration system) will be eligible to receive a refund. Individual requests from athletes/parents will not be accepted.

  • If you’ve already paid and the withdrawal is received prior to the final closing date, we will either transfer your fees to another BCA competition or refund you 100% of the entry fee.
  • If you have not yet paid, but you send us your withdrawal request prior to the final closing date, the invoice will be cancelled.
  • If the withdrawal is received AFTER the final closing deadline then no refund will be given.

 

Athlete Eligibility/ID Cards

We take the safety and fairness of all athletes seriously and will never ask you to sign a Medical or Liability Release form to waive our responsibility. To ensure everyone is registered and competing in the correct age category, all athletes are required to verify their eligibility.

NEW – For the 2020/2021 season physical plastic Athlete ID cards will no longer be issued.

Athletes will still be required to provide proof of age and a photo (and proof of university/school enrolment if applicable) and an “Electronic Athlete ID card” will be stored on our secure eRegistration system.

Athlete wristbands will be provided to the coach prior to arrival, instead of competition stickers, for each verified athlete on the roster and must be worn at all times during the event.

Electronic Athlete ID cards can be accessed by BCA competition staff for verification purposes at any time. Any athlete found to be posing as someone else will result in the team being disqualified from the competition, and further bans may be applied to the individual athlete and/or team. Information may also be shared with other UK EP’s which may result in a wider ban within the industry.

Any athlete arriving at a competition without previously providing their ID documentation for verification can do this on the day however a £20 admin fee will be charged. If an athlete arrives at a venue unverified and without the required documentation you will be unable to compete.  

A £20 fee will be charged to replace lost athlete wristbands.

 

Coach Passes

Each programme will be allocated complimentary coach wristbands based on a ratio of the number of athletes entering the competition:

  • 1-20 Athletes = 2 Coach Wristbands
  • 21-40 Athletes = 3 Coach Wristbands
  • 41-60 Athletes = 4 Coach Wristbands
  • 61-80 Athletes = 5 Coach Wristbands
  • 81-100 Athletes = 6 Coach Wristbands
  • 101-120 Athletes = 7 Coach Wristbands
  • 121-140 Athletes = 8 Coach Wristbands
  • 141-160 Athletes = 9 Coach Wristbands
  • 161+ Athletes = 10 Coach Wristbands

Additional Coach Wristbands can be purchased on the entry form at a cost of £20.00 per wristband per day.

Each programme will be allotted a maximum of 10 Coach Wristbands including complimentary and purchased.

 

Disqualification

Any team who deliberately violates IASF age eligibility requirements, submits inaccurate rosters, or violates a crossover rule will be disqualified and will also lose eligibility for bids to end-of-season events. Pending investigations and due process, a disqualification may occur after the competition is over.  Information will also be shared with other UK based EP’s which may result in a wider ban.

Any athlete, coach, or supporter of your team involved in any act of harassment or conduct deemed likely to bring Cheerleading into disrepute may result in your entire programme receiving a deduction or being disqualified.

 

Interruption of Routine

If your routine is interrupted because of a failure of the competition equipment you will be permitted to restart your routine from the beginning. In the event your routine is interrupted because of a failure of your equipment, supplies or personnel, you may either continue or withdraw from the competition.

The only individuals that may stop a routine for injury are:

  • Competition Officials
  • Coach from the team performing
  • Injured Individual
  • Safety/Head Judge

An injured athlete may create a potential safety hazard because of the inability to hold, support, spot or catch. For the safety of all athletes competing, a routine may be interrupted if:

  • An athlete is clearly injured.
  • An athlete is questionably injured and does not resume their role in the routine within 5 seconds of questionable injury.
  • An athlete leaves the competition floor due to an injury.

An Injured Athlete may not return to the competition floor unless the competition officials receive clearance from all the representatives listed below:

  • Event Medical Team attending to that participant
  • Parent/Guardian (if present)
  • Coach of the competing team/programme
  • In the event of a suspected head injury, the athlete cannot return to perform without clearance from a licensed medical professional that has training related to head injuries.

If a team is allowed to perform again following a routine interruption, the new performance time will be at the sole discretion of the Competition Official. The team must (pending the injury’s impact on the routine) perform the routine again in its entirety, but judging will resume from the point at which the injury/interruption occurred as determined by the judges. All skills must be performed full out from the beginning of the routine. All point deductions accumulated to that point (if any) would carry over.

If a team is permitted to perform again but fails to perform the routine in its entirety (example: throwing back tucks instead of the full twist thrown in the original performance), it is at the discretion of the Competition Official how that team’s scores will be affected.

 

Choreography

Suggestive, offensive, or vulgar choreography, costuming, makeup, and/or music are inappropriate for family audiences and therefore lack overall audience appeal. This may affect the judges’ overall impression and/or score of the routine. Vulgar or suggestive choreography is defined as any movement implying something improper or indecent, appearing offensive or sexual in content, and/or relaying lewd or profane gestures or implications.

 

Music

We now provide a service where coaches can submit their music files to us in advance of the competition which can be played from our sound system directly. Further information will be provided after each competition closing date.

Alternatively, a digital format is preferred. Please plan to bring your music on two devices for backup purposes. A representative of your squad must start and stop your music and remain at the sound desk during the performance.

 

Uniform

The athlete’s uniform is a garment that should be appropriate for the activity to minimise risk for the athletes whilst the BCA is not adhering to the IASF cover up rule, coaches should be aware that in the USA this season a cover and make up policy is being implemented please see the IASF website if you are intending to compete outside the UK.

 

Surface/Flooring

All Cheer team performances will compete on a 54’ x 42’ carpeted sprung or carpet bonded foam Cheerleading safety floor.

Dance teams will compete on a Harlequin/Marley style floor where possible. It may not be logistically possible at some regional competitions in which case Dance teams will compete on the Cheer surface.

 

Competing Order

The competing order will be determined by random selection. 

 

Penalties

Range sheets and/or deductions will be available for the coach to collect at “Coaches Corner” around 10 minutes after you have competed for review prior to awards.

 

Score Sheets

Score Sheets will be released to your coach portal following completion of the awards ceremony for that session.

 

Photography

The BCA reserve the right to refuse anyone from taking photographs and videos at any events and competitions and at any time, to protect the privacy of Athletes, Spectators, Teams and Programmes, as well as to stop professional photographers from using images for money and personal gain and to protect its own employed photographers and photo system.

It is possible as a parent or coach to film and take photos of your own children and teams using phones and amateur camera equipment and camcorders.

The BCA prohibits the filming of teams that you are not affiliated with or those that you do not have express permission from in advance.

The use of flash photography, continuous flash or any other lighting during competition is prohibited. This includes small flashes such as (but not limited to) those from a camera phone. Any person using flash photography of any kind will be asked to stop and may be asked to leave the competition halls. Flash photography is allowed outside the competition halls and during awards ceremonies at advised photo opportunities within them.

Professional Camera Lens usage - Use of telephoto/long distance and wide aperture rated professional camera lenses is forbidden at BCA events unless prior consent from the BCA has been received. This is to protect the privacy of all individuals by making sure long-distance photos cannot be unknowingly taken of other people, especially minors, without their knowledge.

Professional lens equipment is defined as:

  • Any lens (including non-telephoto) with a fixed or zoom focal length over 105mm.
  • Any lens (including non-telephoto) with an aperture rating of 2.8 or wider (enabling lower light photography).

The BCA work with specialist professional photographers at all of our events to ensure you have access to the highest quality and value for money professional photos of your teams and children. All our photographers are DBS checked and undergo specialist training for the competition environment.

 

Press

All press enquiries must be submitted to a BCA director for approval prior to the competition. It is the responsibility of the coach or nominated squad representative to supervise all Press and Media interviews involving members of their programme to ensure the wholesome image of the sport is upheld.

 

Last updated: 13th July 2020.
These guidelines are reviewed regularly and may change at any time.