Champions choose AIDA. That catchy phrase has been circulating through the ballroom dance world for the past 4 years, representing the high quality caliber of our shoes and the dancers who choose to wear them. We are truly humbled by the response our #ChampionsChooseAIDA campaign has garnished and we are thankful for every single dancer who chooses to dance in our shoes! But not everyone couple can become a sponsored #AIDAChampion. So who are these #AIDAChampions? How do they help differentiate our brand? And what are there responsibilities when it comes to promoting the AIDA Dance shoe brand? If you’ve ever wondered about these questions, then read on!
There are countless AIDA Champions throughout the world (mostly in Russia, Ukraine, and parts of Europe), but this is AIDA Dance USA after all; and in this article we will only focus on the couples that AIDA Dance USA sponsors directly. There are a total of 35 couples that we sponsor directly! Ranging from Professional Latin to Theatre Arts, our AIDA Champions have accomplished some remarkable things. From multiple World Champion titles to National Champions titles to being featured on primetime television shows, our couples never cease to amaze us! Let’s take a look at some our couples’ most glaring achievements:
- Kiki Nyemchek makes it to the Final 4 of the hit TV show So You Think You Can Dance! this year
- Marat Gimaev and Alina Basyuk make the Blackpool final in their final competition ever
- Pasha Stepanchuk and Gabriella Sabler win Blackpool RS Amateur Latin
- Craig Smith makes it to the finals of America’s Got Talent
- Nick Cheremukhin and Vika win back-to-back World and National Champions titles in 2016 and 2017
- Anna Kaczmarski makes it to the final round of America’s Got Talent at the age of 9!
- Rickie Taylor becomes the only USA dancer to win Junior World Championships, at the age of 13 nonetheless
- Luka Milacic-Perusina (aka Wolf) and Jenalyn Saraza-Pacheco make it to the Semi-Finals of the hit TV show World of Dance in its first season on air
- Shane and Shannon Jensen becomes first couple to win multiple Theatrical Arts gold medals at the Blackpool Dance Festival
- Vlad Shakhov and Ekaterina Popova win Blackpool RS Professional Ballroom
- Andrei Kazlouski and Asta Sigvaldadottir become the first USA National Pro Latin Champions since 2007!
And this list goes on and on! We can literally type out a whole blog about our couples achievements, but this isn’t what this article is about. Having amazing results and achievements is only part of the story. The couple must meet the “AIDA quality test”. That means not only must they be high caliber dancers, but also high quality people off the dance floor. We do not want to associate our brand with people who don’t respect the dance world, are full of themselves, and do not give back to the world in someway. Humility is actually the first thing we look at when choosing our AIDA Champions. You will never find one of our AIDA Champions putting someone else down for their own gain; these are just not the type of dancers that we sponsor and want our brand associated with. In fact, we’ve had potential AIDA Champions who we chose not to sponsor because of the kind of personality they depict. So good results are not enough to become an AIDA Champion, you must also be a champion off the dance floor!
The fact that our couples are champions on and off the dance floor is what helps differentiate our brand. It goes to show that every part of the process is important in development, just like our shoes. Our couples are a true representation that quality is created in those moments that are not seen or advertised. On the practice floor practicing day in and day out or in the manufacturing room perfecting the craft of making a perfect ballroom dance shoe. Off the dance floor giving back to the community and teaching our younger generations or off the dance floor taking our dancers’ suggestions as to how we can improve our product. A lot of what our couples do is synergetic with our process of creating the perfect ballroom dance shoe for you! That is why we choose the highest quality dancers AND humans.
Our relationship with these couples isn’t only synergetic in its foundation, but also in its actual form. What we mean by that, is that not only do we promote our couples’ brand but they promote our brand as well! As an AIDA Champion, our couples hold a responsibility to constantly improve our brand. There are a number of requirements that our couples must meet in order to elevate our brand:
- ALWAYS wear an AIDA Patch during any competition. This is to physically show other dancers what ‘team’ our couples are affiliated with. As soon as dancers see the #AIDAPatch combined with the quality dancing, they immediately begin associating the high caliber dancing with our brand. This is why we put such high emphasis on this requirement!
- Our couples thank us (and other sponsors and their coaches) for helping them after a good result. It goes without saying that the majority of the effort in achieving these amazing results falls down on the couples’ work ethic, but that is not to say they did not have help. It takes a village. And although we are a small part of that village, our couples still find time to thank us, directly and publicly.
- Promote our shoes to their students. If you truly believe a product is so good that you would accept a sponsorship from the brand, then you should want your students to choose quality. Luckily our couples understand the importance of a perfect fitting shoe!
So there you have it. A brief synopsis of what it means to be an AIDA Champion! If you have any blog ideas that you would like us to share or would like to share yourself, please do not hesitate to contact us directly via email at firstname.lastname@example.org!