Hey you!

Via Alfons, I found out that one of my nephews is breakdancing. Better yet, according to sources, breakdancing is actually still pretty popular over in Europe.

I find this hilarious, because over 20 years ago, both yours truly and his bro were pretty good breakdancers (previously on xsamplex). Hey, we didn’t dance on ‘Hey You’ (audio fragment [600K+] ), but we did on ‘Uprock’. I was one of those fearless headspinners. In my top days, I could do a clockwise headspin, stop in the middle, and then go counter-clockwise without a helmet: a feat that appeared to be so shocking to other breakdancers and onlookers. As a kid, naturally, I didn’t care. We did dance on a schoolnight too (we were invited): the stage event was played as a ‘cool guys’ vs. ‘uh-nerd guys’, and I fondly remember how after a couple of Alfons’ backspins and my headspins, the crowd started to pull out their hands for us. I can’t remember being nervous either, I just remember it was a long song we were dancing on.

The good part, is that we lost interest and returned to focus on our homework, school and more important matters, like reading books. Maybe we just tried to prove that there was after all a scientific point to breakdancing. It’s all about balancing, motion and gravity.

Anyways, if you really want to headspin, the first thing you need to learn is to balance on your head. The best way to do this, is with the help of a wall (so you won’t fall): I thought this was the hardest part of mastering the headspin. Having somebody trying to hold your legs is probably a good idea too: if you break your neck, at least someone can call the ambulance. Doing the spin is actually the easiest part: if you move your legs from spreaded to closed position and back (the ‘scissors move’), you’ll notice your body wants to move automatically. The trick is to gain speed by swinging your legs back and forward: while one leg tips, the other leg should move backward to maintain that precious balance. Oooh. Headspin!

Science matters.