Darren R. Wong receives many questions regarding how to break dance.
Here is a list of frequently asked questions Darren R. Wong receives and his answers to them.
Darren R. Wong's FAQ
Break dancing seems like it would be an intimidating skill to jump into learning. However, in my experience, it is actually the dancers who don’t have any previous dance experience who progress the best. The reason for this, in my opinion, is because they approach break dancing without any previous “bad habits” or preconceived thoughts as to what is right vs. what they have been taught is wrong. The more open to learning a person is, the easier it is to teach them the basics they need to begin their journey of mastering the art of break dancing
A common misconception of break dancing is that you have to be really strong to learn how to break dance. This is because most people associate break dancing with the more athletic skills such as flares, windmills, and headspins.
The art of break dancing consists of so much more than just these tricks (also known as power moves)
You do not have to be strong to learn how to break dance. Most basic techniques (if learned in the proper order) can be executed without the need for strength. Most basic movements utilize momentum and an understanding of the distribution of one’s weight. Once you understand the basics, you will be prepped and primed to take on the more advanced movements because you will understand everything that goes into a so-called “advanced” movement.
Also, as a side bonus, you will gain significant strength by practicing the basic movements, so you will be more prepared to take on those more advanced moves that are usually associated with break dancing then you would have been had you just jumped into learning those movements with the proper understanding of the basics.
The short answer is no. Of course, some factors come into play when learning how to break dance (for any age range). What kind of injuries have you suffered from before? Do you have certain mobility issues preventing you from getting into an optimal position? Has your doctor recommended that you not participate in certain movements/activities?
Everyone has certain things they can and cannot do. However, the beauty of break dancing is that you can always make adjustments to your movements in order to still enjoy the art of break dancing.
If you have the right teacher who understands how to work around certain obstacles that you are facing (ankle mobility, back problems, knee problems, etc.) then you can still learn how to break ance and be keep your body safe at the same time.
To be cliche… Age truly is just a number when it comes to learning how to break dance
Like I mentioned in a previous FAQ, break dancing is not all about strength. It is understanding how to control your body through momentum and weight distribution.
With that said, here are some suggestions on how to strengthen your joints and muscles for the tasks that break dancing asks for
- Your leg muscles are very important when it comes to footwork. practice air squats, lunges, cossack squats and pistol squats will be very beneficial to your footwork training [3-4 sets of 8-12 reps]
- Since you are on your toes, for the most part, strengthening your calves is highly recommended. Perform both straight leg and bent leg calve raises to target your calves muscles to build up there strength [5-6 sets of 15-20 reps]
- Your core is very important when it comes to footwork. Various types of plans are recommended over crunch movements because you will be in a plank type positions vs. a crunch position most of the time when it comes to break dancing [3-4 sets of 30-60 sec holds]
- Arm strength will help improve the speed and long-term stamina of your footwork so be sure to strengthen your shoulders, chest, and triceps. This can be done via pushups, handstand pushups and diamond pushups [3-4 sets of 8-12 reps]
- For freezes, practice holding a freeze position for time so you can both strengthen your muscles and increase the endurance of your muscles [5-10 sets of 15-60 holds]
- If stamina is your focus, choose a movement and perform HIIT intervals of it (High-Intensity Interval Training) [start with 5-10 rounds of 15 sec high intensity and 45 second rest for the first few weeks and then gradually increase the high-intensity interval and decrease the rest time every few weeks]
Technically, the answer is no. Everyone’s break dance goals are going to be different. Some dancers want to learn tricks that come from the style of break dancing and other are really interested in becoming a “b-boy/b-girl” and therefore want to learn the entire style of break dancing.
There really is no right or wrong path. If you just want to learn a certain move from the style of break dancing, I will say you should learn the concepts, technique, and any prerequisite knowledge that goes into executing that move. Diving in and hoping for the best is a good mentality to have, however, you will run the risk of getting injured which is never a good thing.
If you want to truly learn the style of break dancing the, yes, you should learn the basic fundamentals that created the style so you will have an understanding of everything that goes into how a move works, is executed and the thought process behind it. Taing the time to understand the basics will pay in the long run when it comes to learning more advanced movements because you will have a clear understanding of how a movement is being done because of your strong understanding of the fundamentals.