A dance squad or dance team, sometimes called a pom squad or drill team, is a sport team that participates in competitive dance. In a routine, a squad will incorporate a specific dance style (i.e. hip-hop, jazz or lyrical), technical work (tumbling, leaps, turns, kicks, splits, jumps) and, depending on the routine, pompon and/or cheers. A pom squad slightly differs from a regular dance squad in that it uses pom-poms in all its dance routines, whilst a regular dance squad may or may not do pom work in a dance routine. Dance teams are also popular in performance dance, especially at sporting events, most commonly performing during the pre-game and halftime periods (and, in a number of cases, on the sidelines) of football and basketball games.
Dance is a highly competitive sport. Youth/association, middle school, high school, collegiate, all-star, and professional teams compete on local, regional, state, national, and international levels. Teams are judged on a number of criteria including form, team unison, showmanship, precision of motions, jumps, leaps, turns, choreography, enthusiasm, and, in the case of pom squads, visual use of poms-poms.
Dance squads emphasize precise, synchronized motions along with technical dance skills (such as jumps, turns, and leaps). Their routines encompass various styles of dance including the more usually incoprorated hip hop, jazz, lyrical, and kickline styles, to the more unusually used styles like disco, rock and roll, and gospel. A key feature of the dance is the ability to change formations very smoothly.