Breakdancing is a popular form of dance often seen executed in street dance competitions. Originally, it was called as B-boying or breaking since the dance was executed based on the breaks in records that were connected together by street DJs. The breaks provided the DJs a chance to bring their creativity in mixing good rhythms which the dancers could use to exhibit their breakdancing skills. The history of breakdancing goes way back some 30 years ago at that time that hip hop culture was flourishing among African Americans. Nevertheless, certain elements of the dance can already be seen in some cultures specifically that of West African countries. The original steps were quite raw jumping and jiggling which was modified later when it was adopted in the west.
In fact, the history of break dancing in the US can be traced back as early as late 60s. The group Zulu kings can be credited for introducing break dance in America as a form of settling violence that normally happened between gang fights. The Zulu kings led by Africa Bambaataa was able to create a community of rappers, dancers, graphic artists that came from the Bronx. The Bronx is also known as a place where gangs thrived and battled for supremacy to control certain territories. Bambaata conceptualized the idea that fights can be settled in the streets by redirecting aggression into performing arts such as dance; hence, the term “break it down” meant breaking up a fight by showing breakdancing skills.
Indeed, the young men would “get on their foot” and engage in a showdown of strength, creativity ,and agility as shown by breakdancing. Another person who popularized breakdance was the singer James Brown. He would get on his foot when he sang: Get on the Good Foot’’ which was mimicked by young people . Eventually, this practice became a culture propagated by “break bets”. This break bets were also called break boys which are also known as b-boys. Technically, breakdance is performed using hip-hop music. In the 70s, even Latinos immersed themselves in hip-hop culture and adopted breakdance into their streetdance competitions. It was even made popular by Rock Steady especially when it was introduced in Japan. Later on the whole world caught the breakdance fever as it spread across US, Japan , and Europe. Streetdancing competition was held as annually where thousands of crew members performed to show their skills.