Should Breakdancing Be An Olympic Sport?! Why The Hip Hop Community is Divided…

Should Breakdancing Be An Olympic Sport?! Why The Hip Hop Community is Divided…


100 Replies to “Should Breakdancing Be An Olympic Sport?! Why The Hip Hop Community is Divided…”

  1. i like watching breaking, but this is one of the dumbest ideas i have ever heard for an Olympic event.
    here's why I don't like the idea of it being in the Olympic; basically any form of dance to be judged will be almost completely subjective by the judges. in gymnastics there is a set-in-stone specific form that has to take place during a performance such as straight arms, legs, pointed toes, etc…. in breaking, there is some specific forms that are required, but the whole point of this form of dance is that it is an artistic expression of dance that is personal to the person performing said dance. so literally every move you make could be subjectivity what you think was the best you've ever done while the judges may see it as sloppy or too stiff, etc…. when i watch movies like step up or bring it on, all i see is people flailing around and the people of the same race that are watching are going nuts like they just watched a miracle happen before their eyes. it's mostly a popularity contest. if you're a known breaker, no matter what you do out there, the crowd is going to go nuts. if you're a nobody giving it your best, you're still expressing yourself in the same way as the 'known' breaker, but you may not get any responses, even if it was just as good of a performance. basically i don't see that there's any way to be objective about judging this form of dance.
    they as a community already have contests that are probably judged with a lot of bias, but it's just ridiculous to think they can judge this type of dancing objectively without any bias, whether that be by someone who is well known being scored higher than less knows, or by race, gender, etc.

  2. They can add it to the Olympics if they find a way to judge it. But that doesn’t mean I’m going to watch it. Not sure how it’ll be much different than the gymnastics floor routine.

  3. You're not a fit for the X games. This was an absolutely absurd thought to me… not a fit for the Olympics, yet you think it's a good fit for the xgames? Please, you are dancing… closer to figure skating than Xtreme sport.. consider yourself one of chicks with ribbons doing the dancing gymnastics with out a ribbon.

  4. I figure the biggest drawback to breaking being included in the Olympics would be the effect it has on the culture. I mean, this is probably what the one guy meant by "raw", but breaking is all about innovation and discovery and pushing the envelope. It's thinking outside the box, flattening that box and doing a spin on it near a street corner somewhere. The mere act of codifying the movements enough to create a judging scheme could stifle creativity in a big way.

    Then again, what do I know? I may have flirted briefly with hip hop dancing in the early 90s (a few bars of I've Got the Power still makes me want to risk back injury, LOL) but otherwise I mostly only know what they show in movies. So … yeah.

  5. Sure but first Cheerleading. That's been waiting in the wings for longer than Break Dancing and deserves to move up in prestige first.

  6. It would be like everyone looking at a picture, then having contestants paint that same picture at some point placing definitive rules on how to paint it. It might even hinder the emotion that comes with the music, even. When did they hit the drop? How long was the freeze? It's very technical and talented dancing for sure. It IS dancing and emotion. If somehow, you could give every single move a name, where, what would be the control? Where's the double-triple axel flip when all of it is amazing?

  7. As a (retired) bboy, I agree more with Grim on this one. If you're going to put breaking in the Olympics, fine. But you need the right judges, the right judging system, the proper format, etc. That's just to make it as faithful culture as possible.

    You're never going to get the rawness (not to be conflated with edginess, it't not about that). You're not going to be able to replicate the feel of a cypher on such a grand stage. And, more than likely, those new bboys/bgirls that the Olympics would bring in would be entirely battle focused; something that is a sore spot for a lot of verteran breakers who are tired of the excessive focus on battling.

    I do wish Ken Swift would've judged though. We'd need people like him involved if this is going to be done properly. As for judging format…IDK, Dyzee tried to come up with one many years ago , if I remember correctly. Maybe the Olympics could copy his.

    Great video though. As a former journalist and bboy, I appreciate this vid.

  8. while I personally would like to see it in the Olympics it also has to be done right and treated with the proper respect it deserves that one guy was right when he said that the Olympics need breaking, breaking does not need the Olympics

  9. I think that because breaking is so inherently free-form, it would be somewhat difficult to get clear judging criteria. Maybe that's just me, and I don't have much experience with the dance lol. Sick theorist pride tho B)

  10. If one dance style is made an Olympic event, why shouldn't others? All dance at its competitive levels is athletic. Various types of 'ballroom' dance have international competitions so why not add them, too, for the exact same reasons, other than the youth and inner-city draw, as breaking. I'm not being sarcastic. Various dance forms have been proposed in the past for Olympic inclusion.

  11. A level of athleticism isn't enough to warrant something to be called a sport. Yes, you have to be seriously athletic to be a b-boy or b-girl, but then that's true for ballet dancers and traceurs, the latter I think is closer to what I would expect to see in the Olympics than breaking. Breaking is a dance, which for me lands it under art.
    There are artistic elements in some sports like figure skating and rhythmic gymnastics but I see those as to highlight the athleticism of the athletes involved. In breaking, I see it as the opposite where the athleticism is there to show-off or allow for the artistry to come through.
    I guess, for me (who is neither an athlete or a dancer), it breaks down to this: do b-boys and b-girls primarily want to be known as athletes or as dancers? Or, so as not to say they can't be both, do they want to be known as athletic dancers or creative/artistic/aesthetic athletes? (It's a fine distinction but the line is there)

  12. I think it is incredibly difficult to implement Olympic events from those competitive acts that stratal the line between sport and art. I’m all for breaking in the Olympics, but even 5 years seems too short to pull together a legitimate and comprehensive “rule book” and “required elements” list like found in ice dancing or rhythmic gymnastics. Not to mention legitimate judges and a crop of dancers who will compete on a level dance floor. Then again you have to start somewhere.

  13. Another fantastic deep-dive. Should Breaking be in the Olympics? For me, the answer is yes, It at its core is everything an Olympic sport requires. How it should be judged and the rules are for far more knowledgable people than me to decide. Does the Olympics need breaking? I can't answer that and the conversation requires far more space than the average person reading the YouTube comments section will allow.

  14. If breaking dancing were to be included in the Olympics, wouldn't it be as a demonstration sport? I think break dancing would be a great demonstration sport– a sport that is included out of general interest, to demonstrate the wide variety of sporting endeavors in the world. Unfortunately, I don't think the Olympics sees it that way– they see being a demo sport as an initiation into being a regular Olympic sport like track and field or swimming.

    Ballet dancers go through a rigorous training process that has to start in their preteens and cannot stop until retirement. Then why isn't ballet dance an Olympic sport? I agree with another commentor– breakdance, like ballet, is an art, not a sport. Art is about expression, sports is about competition. I'm okay with demonstrating it to show how these artists are incredible athletes as well– the Olympics does have a cultural component. But to be made permanently an Olympic sport, then we have to include ballet, ballroom dancing, square dance, Chinese opera (very athletic)– where does it end?

  15. I mean, they added golf to the Olympics. Breaking is more of a sport than golf. Life, you don't even need to be in shape to play golf. And it's boring. (No offence to actual golfers out there. I'm just not a fan. You do you).

  16. Yeah except the Olympics is a corrupt, money sucking community destroying, people destroying entity. Does anyone remember what Brasil did to hide certain parts of their community. And the massive structures and arenas that dot the world that go unused, and huge money pits only used for two weeks. Look at salt lake cities losses and that was winter Olympics, and Atlanta's losses.

  17. I think it's interesting that it was the OG breakers who didn't want breaking in the Olympics. It makes sense. Breaking is relatively new enough that it is still very personal to the artists who created it. All forms of art evolve as they grow but it can be hard to watch something you love, that you created and has a history, become more impersonal and more disconnected from its origin.

  18. Would really appreciate it if you touch upon other dances in later videos! This was really informative and interesting to me as a person interested in dancing

  19. We've seen a similar discussion in the ballroom dancing world.
    Some even say that the push for ballroom to be in the olympics caused the biggest split in the global Ballroom dancing league, the WDSF and the WDC. One views the sport more as art, and therefore incompatible with the olympics, the others see it more like ice dancing (which is in the winter olympics) as both sport and art.

    Personally, if you are competing in such an event there is always a sports element and an artistic element. It is a sport you can judge on artistry. I am in favour of more dancesport in the olympics, ballroom, breaking or otherwise. I hope that more people will see dance as a sport, and take it more seriously. And everybody always hopes that it will inspire more people to dance in any style.

  20. The younger dancers don't realize that the Olympics will make them their art in order to comply with decency standards. Breaking can be raw because it's real. They are going to not allow that.

  21. There are so many huge dancers that have been trying to make it into a career and have especially because of all the competitions all over the world. I know Les Twins aren’t flipping b-boys but they are the best in the world and dancing is hard. They are athletes to the fullest by far and if they were t in good condition they wouldn’t be able to do it.

  22. Breaking is doing good on it's own. I agree that it doesn't need the olympics the olympics needs it. I also feel though that Breaking should be on TV. The talent these people have is amazing and it should be showcased.

  23. If breaking becomes part of anything, it makes more sense for the x- games.
    Also, figure skating is an art/sport, so breaking the art/sport is perfectly valid

  24. The culture of Breakin will do what it will do, the point is to Enjoy all the motions of it. Playboy Breakin Crew 2000 "Booger" was here. 😁🤘

  25. The physicality and artistic expression involved in breaking have similarities to the floor events in gymnastics, synchronized swimming and ice skating. I believe breaking has a place in the Olympics.

  26. In general i prefer the olympics stick to things that are objective, speed, strength, endurance, etc. When its subjective, judges are involved, and they score it on personal preference. And i dont trust the olympics because the whole committee is corrupt and that probably filters down to the judges.

  27. This was dope ppl these days barely know bout the 4 pillars glad they promiting it now as for the question. I can see the issue cause a sport nees regulation and you cant "regulate" breaking it wasnt madr for regulation its like how do you "regulate" on a international scale rapping, its expressive, its better in the raw.
    But, it does have a great competitive element and theres already a space like the Olympics for it. So like they said before how do you have the competition but respect the history?

  28. I think it would be cool to see breakdancing in the Olympics, but i do have to wonder, how long will it be until people push for other dance styles to be a part? We have ice skating and ice dancing, but why shouldn't other genres of dance be included?

  29. I prefer objective sports (like a race for example) vs subjective ones (where someone does a dance and judges give scores). I know the Olympics already has subjective arts sports like that (figure skating and whatnot) but I'm not as huge of a fan of those either. It's cool to watch the people perform, but as a competition I don't like it as much as it's left to judges giving scores, vs an objective outcome like a race (where it's who's fastest rather than what scores judges decided they should have).

  30. I will answer this for you as a veteran b-boy. The reason why the hip-hop community is divided is due to the old head vs. young head mentality. The old heads just hate! I know I'm going to catch flack for this but I lived it myself and I can tell you that the older generations while some were great mentors and inspirations, a lot of them just straight up hate on the younger generation. I won't name any names because this isn't a snuff piece, but the fact is that the younger generation of b-boys & b-girls have thought of new ideas and have new physical abilities that they never had. Instead of supporting us they would always tell us that we aren't real and we aren't doing it right. They never liked that fact that we took the dance in new directions that they couldn't imagine. It's called progress. However, the old heads felt threatened that it was going in a new direction. First it was power moves they would hate on. Then it was new styles they would hate on. The old heads also felt threatened that they were no longer on top. The fact is that b-boying is a young man's sport. Over time you lose your strength & speed. Unfortunately that's just a part of life. Instead of passing the torch, they wanted to still be on top, so they would try to convince us that they were still better, by saying our ideas were wack & we weren't respecting tradition. Nowadays b-boys have new opportunities that were never available in the old days. I get that in their generation it wasn't about the money and the fame during their time, but I truly believe that if they were presented with these opportunities during their time, they would've absolutely jumped on the chance to be in the olympics, movies, commercials, music videos etc. Pass the torch, grow old with dignity & let your experience, perspective & wisdom be why you are respected. The fact is that some old heads are just bitter, and it really sucks. I am so proud that I contributed to hip-hop culture during my generation, but it is no longer my time, & I would rather see it progress, than stay in the same place or fall off. I would hate for my generation to be as far as it went. For b-boying to survive it needs to go mainstream to reach more people, which will ultimately help more people to learn about where hip-hop came from. It's about time for b-boys to be able to make a living just like these DJs & Rappers are able to. I understand that their fear is that commercialism leads to inauthenticity of the culture, but I believe that it is better for more people to participate in this activity. If they don't participate then it will definitely die off. More people participating creates more opportunity for people to be reached & educated about the history. As long as the people judging are non-biased veterans, let the evolution proceed!

  31. What about ballet? or ballroom dancing then? Bit weird this… Dancing is as much of a sport as it is art, I feel like this is a bit silly. Also feel like this is another example of people taking inclusion a little bit too far, even the article wrote ''a more urban crowd'' saying you want an urban crowd is just a nice way of saying you want more people of colour to tune in. Jus sayin'

  32. Great job on this video Phil and everyone at Rogue Rocket. I wasn’t aware that Breakin had such a worldwide following. What’s the name of the music playing through a major portion of the video? I’ve heard it on hot ones and especially as the theme song in curry shop both from first we feast and now I hear it here. It’s very catchy but I cannot seem to find a name for it. Thanks in advance and keep up the amazing work on all these videos.

  33. You guys suck for not involving/interviewing Michael "Boogaloo Shrimp" Chambers and Adolfo "Shabba Doo" Quinones. They pioneered breakdancing by bringing it to the forefront and to a new generation.

  34. If Breaking is a sport .. why then isn't Ballet consider a sport and in the Olympics too?

    Breaking is an extremely athletic art and I am certain that the top flight train as hard as any Olympian. I feel the IOC is doing this for the chance to bring a focus to themselves and not to Breaking itself

  35. Philip DeFranco covering breakdance?!?! Im so ecstatic! It's hard to find others around me who are also interested in breaking, hopefully it's push on the mainstream stage will change that.

  36. Progress really is inevitable and the more the veterans support change the more likely it is to stay true to it's roots, if they don't support it and are included in it's future I feel like it will lose its authenticity and become commercialized

  37. I just hope that this doesn't create a divide and conflict between those who focus on the original platforms it is performed on and those who will go into the Olympics. If it does, the issues could last for generations :/

  38. I personally think that break dancing is fine as both a sport and a cultural and artistic expression. Although I believe that the two will most likely diverge pretty hard in the Olympics (which has its own host of massive issues to begin with) I also agree that including it will help further normalize break dancing the world wide, which at worse is harmless. I also get the hesitation to see it become so mainstream however. It started out as a pretty specific cultural icon, and it will only become more mainstream and marketed as time goes on. But the cultural and artistic heart of it will remain nonetheless. I think…

  39. Surely ballet should also be included as a "sport" then. Surely any form of dancing requires athletic fitness to perform jumps, poses, holds, throws etc. The difficulty with dance is that there are many interpretive elements that make judging very subjective vs the objective measurement of who jumps highest, swims fastest, lifts heaviest etc.

  40. I hold it very highly as an art and respect it as a sport. Still… For some reason it just looks silly to me. Its like the ugliest form of dance in my, obviously, objective opinion. Ill never knock this an as art, its just a genre of dance that looks cringey to me.

  41. Wait so he can judge competitions sponsored by red bull but he can’t judge a competition sponsored by the Olympics bc of…. Art? It’s literally the same idea as ice skating or gymnastics, the old school guys don’t want it bc “nah man breaking is too real for the olympics… the world can’t handle our sick moves and devil may care attitude…”

  42. If you want to be critical of "that's not an Olympic sport!" Just remember that Dramatic Literature was once a competition at the Olympics. Sculpture, painting, all Olympic competitions in the past.
    The Olympics DEFINITELY isn't getting any 'new' viewers. If they want to stay relevant after all their current viewers have died off they'll need to adapt and add something fresh.

  43. They are bringing lightsaber fighting in the next Olympics, so at that point why not? A few events like gymnastics, ice skating…ect bridge the gap between sport and art (those are the only ones I care to watch anyway). I do think that X Games might be the best fit but either way I don't really have any strong feelings about it.

  44. Short answer….. Yes.
    Long answer……. It's a form of gymnastics. While it'll prolly lose it's essence in an olympic setting, EG: not being a battle dance form, it's still going to be a floor dance.

  45. Olympics is so corrupt, they add & remove categories each time, its all to drive publicity. I'd prefer if the olympics was restricted to individual traditional athletic categories.

  46. All this documentary about the history and no mention of how young black kids were heavy into breakdancing. They made us feel like shit for dancing and staying off the street except when some white girl or boy wanted to do it. Crush Grove who where they teaching, step it up movie who are they teaching…. Cultural appropriation at it's finest. Million is kids stop dancing and got into street life because it wouldn't lead to anything for us. imagine is instead of gun battles in Chicago you had break battles, but no it only is something worthy of international money and competition when whites and Italians and who ever else gets into it.

  47. So the elder generation would ask why tf is this in the Olympics & the younger generation would believe its cringe. Leave it out of the mainstream media cause CNN can barely wrap their minds around Obama’s little swag walk & Putans sad attempt at a rap career 😂

  48. Wait isn't breaking already added in the Olympic program for Paris 2024? Like it was already proposed this June, so there's another loop the culture has to jump?

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