Wall Street Journal reports on the hot new breakaway from Breakdance; it’s the new trend of FingerBreaking! No feet or shoes needed here, it is performed entirely with fingers. This year, the full-body break-dancing competition Red Bull BC One, now in its 10th year, added a slot for FingerBreaking Competition. FingerBreaking of course employs all kinds of clothes and shoes worn by the fingers, anywhere from hip-hip or tracksuits or baseball caps. While the gear adds to the finger show, it is the movement of the fingers, that really count. “Fingers can approximate everything from the moonwalk—the classic backward foot slide made famous by Michael Jackson—to windmills, the full-circle spins with the upper body on the floor and legs in the air.”
Red Bull of course did its part in adding to the excitement for the upcoming competition; Red Bull sent contestants and registrants mini-shoes along with a tiny boom boxes and backdrops including subway stations, alleys and warehouse, that mimic places that street dances are supposed to portray. “Quite apart from the competition, FingerBreaking has practical applications; it helps a dancer understand the mechanics of a full-body move before trying it, just as ballet dancers will move their hands to learn a pattern before executing the footwork.” Nonetheless, FingerBreaking has a long way to go to reach the popularity of its closest rival, FingerBoarding, which is done on miniature skateboards. It is the subject of more than one million videos, according to Tech Deck, a popular brand that claims to sell about three million of the toys per year.
Asian teenagers emerged as a key demographic for DancePad, a gaming app that teaches finger-dancing users to hit marks in time with music, similar to the videogame “Dance Dance Revolution. Launched by the Los Angeles tech startup Moonshark in 2012, the game saw more than 1.5 million downloads. About 40% of the users were in Asia, and roughly half were between 13 and 24 years old. The actress and singer Jennifer Lopez helped launch it, and 75% of the users were female. Andrew Chan, chief executive of Moonshark, says FingerBreaking is popular because it is so accessible. “You don’t have to be that strong, but it retains traditional skill-based elements,” he says. “The barriers to entry are low, which has led to a global following.” Another trend to catch the fancy of the young and restless!