Mastering the Halos move in breakdancing represents a significant milestone for any dancer seeking to elevate their skill and creativity. This dynamic maneuver, characterized by circular leg motions while balanced on the head, not only showcases technical prowess but also demands exceptional control and strength. Originating in the vibrant era of early 1980s breakdance, the Halo has evolved into a hallmark move, admired for its visual appeal and the athleticism it requires. This step-by-step guide is designed to equip beginners with the foundational techniques and exercises necessary to confidently execute the Halo, paving the way for artistic expression and advancement in breakdancing repertoire. Whether you’re just starting your breakdancing journey or looking to expand your skill set, mastering the Halo will undoubtedly add flair and finesse to your performance.

What is the Halo Move?

The Halo Move in breakdancing is a complex maneuver where a dancer, known as a breaker, rotates their legs in a circular motion while balancing on their head’s edges. This motion creates the visual effect of a halo around the breaker. Achieving this requires exceptional control, balance, and physical strength.

Mastering the Halo Move is considered an advanced skill in breakdancing. If you are already proficient in moves like the flare or windmill, incorporating the halo into your repertoire can elevate your dance technique and creativity.

For beginners in breakdancing, while there may be some similarities between learning foundational moves and the halo, each presents unique challenges. It’s crucial to focus on mastering fundamental techniques before attempting more advanced maneuvers like the halo.

What is the Halo Move?
What is the Halo Move?

The History of Halos

The history of the Halo in breakdancing traces back to the vibrant era of the early 1980s, often referred to as breaking’s golden age. During this pivotal period in breakdance history, iconic moves solidified their place in the scene, alongside legendary figures such as Crazy Legs and Ken Swift.

The originator of the Halo, Icey Ice, introduced this distinctive move to the world in 1983. Its name derives from the motion resembling the halo of an angel, created as the head rotates in a circular manner. By 1985, the Halo had become a staple among top b-boys, marking a significant evolution in breakdancing technique.

Fundamentally, a Halo involves rotating the head clockwise while supporting the body with the right hand, or counterclockwise while supporting with the left hand. Any deviation from this basic form is classified as a variation.

Over the years, breakers have innovated numerous variations to enhance their skills, including:

  • Double Halo: Involving two complete rotations before the hands touch the ground, with some dancers pushing the limits to perform triple or quadruple halos, like Orko and Lil Cesar.
  • Drilled Halo: Also known as deadman or straight-leg halo, characterized by keeping the legs straight and together during the rotation.
  • Inside Halo: Referred to as the reverse halo, performed similarly to the standard halo but executed clockwise with the left hand supporting, and vice versa.
  • One-Hand H: Originating from Lil Alex of the New York City Breakers in 1984, this variation involves performing the halo with only one hand touching the ground.
  • Shoulder Halo: Starting on one shoulder and transitioning to the other without using hands to support the body throughout the move.
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The versatility of halos allows breakers to mix and match variations according to their personal style and skill level. Once adept at the standard halo, integrating these variations into one’s repertoire enhances artistic expression and technical prowess in breakdancing.

The History of Halos
The History of Halos

How to Do Halos for Beginners

Mastering the Halo move in breakdancing requires a systematic approach to build the necessary speed, momentum, and control. Unlike debates over style versus power, executing a successful halo revolves around precise control and unwavering confidence.

Prepare yourself with your breakdancing shoes and follow this comprehensive guide to learn how to perform your first halo:

Step One – Master Your Handstand

Achieving a solid handstand forms the cornerstone for executing the Halo move. Begin by practicing against a wall for support or under the guidance of an experienced breakdancing instructor to ensure correct form and stability. Focus on these key aspects:

  • Hand Positioning: Place your hands on the ground shoulder-width apart, palms flat with fingers spread. Your wrists should align directly under your shoulders to support your weight effectively.
  • Entry Technique: Approach the handstand by squatting down and placing your hands firmly on the ground. Use a controlled motion to kick your legs up while simultaneously pushing through your shoulders to achieve a vertical position.
  • Stability and Balance: Maintain a straight line from your wrists to your hips and legs, engaging your core muscles to stabilize your body. Adjust your hand position or use a spotter as needed to achieve and sustain balance.
  • Practice Drill: Perform repetitions of entering and holding the handstand position, gradually increasing the duration to build strength and endurance in your shoulders and core muscles.

Step Two – Familiarize Yourself with Leg Movements

Once comfortable with the handstand, focus on developing control over your leg movements while maintaining stability:

  • Leg Lifts: From the handstand position, practice lifting and lowering your legs smoothly and with control. This foundational movement prepares you for the dynamic leg motions required for the Halo move.
  • Range of Motion: Aim to lift your legs to varying heights, adjusting the intensity of the movement while keeping your core engaged to stabilize your body.
  • Timing and Coordination: Coordinate the movement of your legs with your body’s position in the handstand, ensuring fluidity and control throughout the exercise.

Step Three – Integrate Circular Leg Movements

Transition from leg lifts to performing circular motions with your legs, essential for executing the Halo move:

  • Visualize the Motion: Imagine drawing a large, smooth circle with your legs while in the handstand position. This visual cue helps in conceptualizing the trajectory and shape of the Halo move.
  • Controlled Rotation: Initiate the circular leg motion with precision, focusing on maintaining balance and stability in your handstand. Visualize extending your legs outward and then bringing them back in, tracing the shape of a halo around your body.
  • Gradual Progression: Start with smaller circles and gradually increase the diameter of the motion as you gain confidence and control over your leg movements.
How to Do Halos for Beginners
How to Do Halos for Beginners

Step Four – Putting It All Together

Now, combine the elements of the handstand, leg movements, and circular motion to perform the Halo move seamlessly:

  • Starting Position: Begin in your preferred b-boy stance or incorporate footwork essentials to transition smoothly into the starting position for the Halo move.
  • Hand Placement: Squat down and place your hands on the ground, ensuring proper alignment with your shoulders. Spread your fingers wide and press firmly into the ground to support your body weight.
  • Enter Turtle Freeze: Transition into a turtle freeze position by shifting your weight onto one side and lifting your hips slightly while keeping your head to the side. Begin the circular leg motion to initiate the Halo move.
  • Execute the Halo: Push your hips up and initiate the circular leg motion while maintaining balance and control in the handstand position. Focus on completing a full rotation, tracing the halo shape with your legs as you rotate around your head.
  • Smooth Transition: Aim to return to the starting position or transition into another move fluidly after completing the Halo. Maintain focus on body alignment, core engagement, and controlled breathing throughout the entire sequence.
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By breaking down each step into detailed components, you can progressively build the skills and confidence needed to master the Halo move in breakdancing. Regular practice, attention to form, and patience with each stage of learning will contribute to your success in achieving this advanced breakdancing maneuver.

Summary

Learning how to perform the Halo move in breakdancing involves mastering the art of balancing on your head while executing circular leg motions. Originating in the early 1980s, this advanced maneuver requires precise handstand techniques, controlled leg movements, and a strong core. This step-by-step guide provides beginners with essential drills and practices to develop the necessary strength, balance, and coordination. By breaking down each component—from mastering the handstand to integrating circular leg motions—dancers can progressively build towards executing the Halo move with confidence and fluidity. Emphasizing technique and practice, this guide aims to empower dancers to incorporate this impressive skill into their breakdancing repertoire, enhancing both performance quality and artistic expression.

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