A Look at the Fundamentals of "Breaking" With Red Bull

We learned from the pros this past weekend in Orlando

Red Bull

Orlando. The home of Disney World. A place where people dream big and those dreams come true. For some, those dreams are a professional dancing career, and for Red Bull’s 32 BC One Finalists, their biggest wishes came true this past weekend as they competed for an opportunity to have a spot in the Red Bull BC One World Finals taking place this November in Gdansk, Poland. Since we’ve already covered the history of breaking as an art form and the backstory of the B-Girls, we decided to take a closer look at the fundamentals of breaking.

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RoxRite / Red Bull

Now we could have just talked to all the legends about what it really takes to be a successful breaker, but since it was the Finals, I figured I would take it a step further by actually trying myself since I am a complete novice (actually lower). This past Friday I met up with Red Bull BC One All Star B-Boy Victor and B-Girl Kate" for a breaking jam session where they tried their best to teach me everything they know. I wasn’t “successful” by any means and you guys will never see that video footage, but they did give some important tips that are super helpful to learning the technical elements of breaking.

Disclaimer: If you are a beginner, we recommend you start off taking a class or connecting with local breakers in your area to ensure you are doing these moves properly and safely.

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B-girl Shortbread / Red Bull

B-Boy Victor and B-Girl Kate’s Tips For Success:

  • First things first, you have to get the footwork nailed down. Everything boils down to the basic footwork steps, because it lays the groundwork for all breaking moves. Victor and Kate taught me a crossover step that they described as the modern day Running Man. From there they showed me a series of arm moves that I could mix and match which leads me to their next point.
  • Arms can be what differentiates breaking movements and styles, but it can’t look too technical. Victor and Kate started off counting the arm movements it help me out, but very quickly stressed that the moves should be freestyled as opposed to a "routine". In general, dance is about your individual personality and what you are feeling. Victor and Kate did taught me the exact same combination, but it looked like two different routines due to their differing styles and personalities.
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B-Girl Powerflow / Red Bull
  • Next up, you need to have a little swag. The origins of breaking center back to New York, and breaking is ultimately a street dance art form. Swag comes in the form of movements, expressions, and even your personal fashion. Swag can be what gives you those “ooh and aah” moments from the crowd, which can of course give you extra style points from the judges.
  • By now you’ve probably watched numerous videos of the breakers at their cyphers, so you’ve more than likely seen them hit the ground for various floor moves including kicks, spins, flips, and headstands. Those moves require muscular endurance and core work, which can be achieved through many different ways. Some dancers get their strength from a gymnastics background, light weight training, or even Capoeira like B-Boy legend Neguin.
  • Pick a focal point while doing spins to avoid getting dizzy. Breakers are highly trained and have been doing this for years. Beginners, however, will have to train themselves over time to not get dizzy while doing routines. You can avoid this by picking a specific area to lock in on while spinning. Obviously this takes time to master, but with practice you’ll become a pro at it.
  • Last but not least, you can’t overthink it. Once again this is freestyle breaking, so your moves shouldn’t be over planned. At a certain point I definitely began thinking too much, which Victor and Kate noticed. They pointed out that I’ve done some variations of these moves at one point or another in my life which is true. Some of these steps have been incorporated into classic dances such as the electric side, and as mentioned earlier, Victor and Kate had me start the routine doing the running man to get the footwork down. Don’t over think, just go with the flow!
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B-Boy Keebz / Red Bull

So now that you have the basics down, you can start to get in on the breaking action as well. And speaking of getting in on the breaking action, the 2021 Red Bull BC One Matchups are officially set. It was a showdown this past weekend with 16 B-Girls and 16-Boys vying for that coveted Poland spot, but there could only be one winner for each. B-Boy Maurice and B-Girl Isis both took home the trophy. 

2024 Summer Games hopeful b-boy Morris crushed the top 16 b-boy bracket, in addition to eight wildcard invites, ultimately being crowned the Red Bull BC One B-Boy National Champion. Born and raised in Sacramento, CA, Morris Isby has competed around the globe for over two decades. Whether competing solo or alongside crew members, b-boy Morris has maintained his status as a champion competitor, boasting over 120 competitive wins under his belt to date. When he’s not competing or performing, Morris is dedicated to ushering in the next generation of breakers through volunteering and mentorship. He is currently training to compete in the 2024 Paris summer games.

Beating the top 16 b-girls in the country, in addition to eight wildcard competitors, b-girl Isis reigned supreme at the U.S. Red Bull BC One National B-Girl Final. Born in Ecuador, now based in Kissimmee, Florida, Isis Alexandra Granda has danced her whole life. Upon discovering breaking while training ballet and contemporary styles, Isis fell in love with the style of dance and has been breaking for eight years. She currently represents The Last Freestylers Crew.

You can re-watch the B-Girl National Final below.

And you can find the B-Boy National Final here as well.

In the meantime we’ll be keeping you posted on updates between now and the World Finals in November. 

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