Fun, Friendly Hip Hop Dancing for Kids in Sydney
Are your kids interested in learning hip hop? Here at Dancekool, we offer lessons to suit children of all ages and abilities – whether they’re just starting out, wanting to try a new genre, or have been breaking, popping and locking for many years already!
We provide students with the option of private and group lessons, as well as courses that run for a number of weeks. As a hip hop studio that acknowledges the style’s street roots, our classes span a number of different styles – teaching a combination of traditional street moves, new style and jazz-funk.
When it comes to kids’ classes we select music that is age appropriate, ensuring the emphasis is on having fun and being at one with the music. Hip hop dancing for kids is a great hobby that allows children to express themselves, make friends and stay fit – all within a culture that’s less about strict conventions and more about individuality!
What are the main sub-genres of hip hop?
Just as hip hop culture is always changing, hip hop as a dance style is forever evolving. The music changes, and with it comes a new take on classic moves.
Early on, there were three main sub-genres of hip hop: breaking, locking and popping. Over time, different variations of these styles emerged and new moves were developed. Ever wondered how breaking, locking and popping differ? They’re all hip hop, yet they all have their own distinct characteristics! Below, we explain the three foundation styles of hip hop dance in greater detail…
Breaking (also referred to as ‘breakdancing’) emerged from NYC’s South Bronx in the 70s, and is considered the first-ever hip hop dance style – and for many, the founding style.
This dance style comprises four foundation moves: toprock, downrock, freezes and power moves. Breaking started out as toprock, which involves footwork-orientated dance moves performed while standing up. Toprock’s influencers are wide and varied, including tap dance, salsa, Afro-Cuban, and African and Native American dances. Today, toprock is still an important part of most breakdance routines and is often used at the beginning of a performance. From toprock, floor-orientated moves were introduced – which included downrock, freezes and power moves.
Traditionally, dancers perform in ciphers (a circular shape formed around the breakers by spectators), or Apache Lines (a line formation used when two crews are engaged in a dance battle).
Considered one of the ‘funk styles’ of hip hop (along with popping), locking originated in Los Angeles, California in the late 1960s and is therefore technically older than breaking. However, this style isn’t considered the ‘foundation’ of hip hop, because it didn’t evolve from hip hop culture. Rather, it was originally performed to funk music.
However in a similar way to breaking, locking evolved as dance crews were formed. Don “Campbellock” Campbell – who formed “The Lockers” in 1973 – is considered the founder of this dance style.
Locking is characterised by the dancer’s ‘locking’ movement (a brief freeze, before moving again). It’s believed that Campbell invented locking when pausing between dance moves by accident as he tried to remember the next step – and the craze took off from there!
Emerging from Fresno, California in the 1970s, popping is similar to locking.
This hip hop style is branded by the ‘popping’ technique which involves quickly contracting and relaxing muscles to create jerk in the dancer’s body. This move is referred to as a ‘pop’ or ‘hit’. Other dance styles that fall under the umbrella term of popping include liquid, tutting, waving, ticking, gliding, twisto-flex and sliding. One of the most well-known popping moves is the backslide, which gained popularity as the ‘moonwalk’ when performed by Michael Jackson.
Another funk style that is closely related to popping is boogaloo, which was foundered by The Electric Boogaloos dance crew. This crew is widely recognised as having a strong influence on the development of popping.
Hip hop enters the studio
As a dance style, hip hop varies considerably. Although the three main foundation styles are breaking, popping and locking, there are numerous different derivatives across the United States and around the world.
Here at Dancekool, we teach a wide range of styles originating from the American dance crews of the 1970s. With classes designed specifically for kids, we place an emphasis on having fun, making friends and simply learning to move with the music – after all, that’s what hip hop is all about!
If you’re looking for a dance studio that offers hip hop dancing for kids in Sydney, look no further than the friendly team at Dancekool!
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