The best way to choose a dance instructor is to experience them in person – give them a try!

That said, we’ve got some strong credentials to tempt you as well:

Teaching Credentials

Maria Ford is an experienced teacher of adult education in college, corporate and dance studio settings.


PDIA Master Instructor

Maria Ford is a Master Instructor certified by the Global Professional Dance Instructors Association. She was tested and certified in 2012 by Michael Kiehm and Robert Royston. The certification recognizes her experience and skill in advanced adult dance instruction and enables her to train, test and certify other instructors for the GPDIA.

Maria provides structured teacher training to all of Smoothstyle’s instructors.

GPDIA Certified Judge

Maria Ford is also certified for Level 1 as a Judge by the Global Professional Dance Instructors Association.

She is an experienced judge of Jack & Jill, Strictly Swing, and routine divisions at events in Canada and the United States.

Performance Credentials

Our experience includes choreographing and coaching for ourselves, for couples, for students (Pro-Am routine) and for teams. Some highlights include:

  • Vincent & Maria’s “Harder” WCS routine, which earned several first-place standings in the Rising Star tour, 2018-19
  • David & Maria’s “Tore Down” WCS routine, which remained undefeated in the Rising Star division and which advanced to the Classic (professional) division in 2013 – Watch it here >> 
  • Pro-Am routine with Ken Lemoire and Maria,  “When You Say Nothing At All” – Watch the video >>
  • Many popular lead-follow demonstration performances at events and dances. Visit our YouTube Channel to watch many of these.


Maria her former partner, Andre Danis, founded, choreographed and coached Swing Dynamite’s Westie Bombers team in 2008 and 2009. During our tenure, the team took 1st place at the Swing Niagara Dance Championships 2009, and was the top-ranked WCS team in Canada.

Watch the team’s 1st-place performance at Swing Niagara 2009 >>

Watch the team’s top-ranked performance at CSC 2009 >>

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Competition Credentials

Our instructors and many of our students are successful dance competitors. You can see their West Coast Swing competition results by searching by name on the Word Swing Dance Council points registry.