When it comes to dance team, you know you've got the “dance" part of the equation down cold. But the pom work? Not so much. Maybe you're afraid it'll be too much like cheerleading, or that you won't understand the terminology. To help, we spoke with three college dance-team coaches to find out what you can expect in practices, and how dancers can easily transition to working with poms. You'll be surprised at the strength, sharpness and body awareness that can be learned from this flashy style!
Most of the time, the NFL isn't a big fan of over-the-top end-zone dances. And by "isn't a big fan," we mean "charges players who have too much fun out there $30,000 fines." (No, really! That's what then-New Orleans Saints wide receiver Joe Horn got after one particularly nutty 2003 celebration.)
From now until the Super Bowl on February 2, however, the organization is changing its tune. In fact, the Super Bowl Host Committee's "Huddle Shuttle" is traveling the tri-state area during the next few weeks, encouraging fans to show off their own end-zone moves. Participants at each of the Shuttle's stops will be entered in a sweepstakes, and the prizes are $500 and $50 gift cards. From fining $30,000 to awarding $500—not a bad turnaround, NFL!
In honor of this epic dance-off, the New York Daily News even got Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's Alicia Graf Mack to share her own touchdown dance, the "Rocka My Soul" (which, from the sound of it, is based on choreography from Alvin Ailey's iconic Revelations).
Mack showing off her moves (Susan Watts/New York Daily News)
Click here to find out when the Huddle Shuttle will be heading to your neighborhood. And for those of you who need a little more inspiration, here's a mashup of some of the best/most ridiculous end-zone dances in the NFL. Enjoy!
As the girlfriend of a football-loving dude, I've spent many an uncomfortable Sunday afternoon watching big guys in serious padding beat up on each other. (To be fair, the dude has also spent many an uncomfortable Friday evening watching tiny girls in serious tutus pirouette around each other, so.) But maybe NFL showdowns aren't as far out of my comfort zone as I thought. These days, the right football game can almost qualify as a dance event.
Yes, the intricate plays these NFL teams are running are a kind of choreography. And many of the players do take ballet classes to improve their grace and agility. But that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about the celebratory dances.
In the end zone or after a sack, football players seem to be breakin' it down more than ever these days. Take, for example, the Steelers' Ziggy Hood, who lived up to his made-for-dancing name after sacking Eagles quarterback Michael Vick yesterday:
And then, of course, there's the Giants' Victor Cruz, who celebrated each of his three touchdowns against the Browns yesterday with his trademark salsa (a tribute to his grandmother):
Cruz, by the way, is apparently considering adding some even spicier moves to his salsa routine. “Stay tuned,” he said after the game. “I am not quite ready to let the cat out the bag, but there might be a little something.” Maybe I can review his new and improved choreography after the Giants' next game?
Anyway: The point is, these guys make football more fun to watch. And on that note, I'll leave you with this compilation of some of the best, and wackiest, gridiron dancers. Enjoy!