Street dancers express themselves through body movement. You can learn the steps by rote, but you have to supply the soul that turns steps into personal representation. Best place to learn to street dance is in front of a full-length mirror. Put on the tunes and start moving. There are some standard hip-hop moves you can use, but let the rhythm guide you.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Full-length mirror
- Loose clothing
Watch several examples of street dancing before you start rehearsing. You will break down the complicated movements into single steps and short sequences. Stand facing the mirror, legs apart, head and arms loose. Count, one and two and three and four, and repeat until you have a rhythm going.
On the count, bounce on the balls of your feet on one, turn a quarter turn to the right, legs still loosely apart, on two, back to centre on three and to the left on four. This is an easy hop. Now bend at the hips into a partial squat. Your knees will also bend a little. With the hips slightly bent and the knees bent, repeat the previous move. Instead of hopping, use the lead foot in whichever direction you move to make the quarter turn. Don't let your torso angle too far forward. Keep your head upright. Swing the hips slightly in rhythm to the music.
Put your legs apart, arms comfortably out the side, hand flat in a "stop" gesture. Elbows slightly bent. Push left and extend the arm on one, push right and extend the arm on two, hands together in a clap in the middle of your chest on three, keep hands up in the clap position and on four cross across your chest first with the right hand forward and then reverse and cross with the left hand forward. Combine this move with the two leg combinations. Stay on the beat. Modify this move by bending your arms and closing your fists.
Continue arm work by bringing the hands to the centre, held flat together, fingers up, move them up to the sky on one, bend at the waist and move them down toward the ground, head down as if following, on two, left arm extended out and right arm pointed at the ground behind the right leg on three and same arm extended to point at the floor in front of the left toe, left arm remains extended, on four. Swing them back and forth, elbows bend and fists balled as if you were skiing. Hips sway side to side during this set. Be more vigorous. Punch the air to make the movements sharp.
Drop flat onto the ground and try a windmill. Gather your arms to the side of your body and hands flat, faced forward on either side at the waist. Lift the body up on the forearms and bounce on the one count. Legs open for balance and spin the body a quarter turn on two. Jump into a squat on three, arms out to the sides, hands up. On four jump up into a standing position, legs apart, arms bent and hands together in the middle. You may need to gain arm strength to do this move correctly.
Practice these basic moves and add more footwork. Kick your left leg out in front and spin around on the right leg. Extend the arms during the spin of counts one and two and bring them in close to your body, hands in the middle fingers pointed up on three and four. Combine these easy steps and change them or add different sequences of the same steps as you continue to stay in rhythm to the music.
Tips and warnings
- Go to dance workshops to learn more moves. Dissect each move you see into one and two and three and four count. You will soon find that your neck and shoulders find their own rhythm as your feet and legs follow new steps. Remember that if you create unique moves in rhythm you may be inventing the next new dance craze.
- Stay off your head until you have built up sufficient neck and shoulder strength. It is best to learn head spins at a studio with someone to help protect you from injury.
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