Hardcore Dancing: A How to by Matt Main

This was brought up at the first Travis meeting this year but I think everyone forgot about it.

Since Michael Burton is in a band called Mercenaries (they’re great and no, Michael didn’t put me up to this), it made me think back to when I used to be heavy into the heavy music. What did every teenager that was into heavy music do? Go to shows and Hardcore Dance!

“Matt, I know what dancing is…but what’s Hardcore Dancing?!”

Hardcore Dancing is sometimes referred to as Moshing, hXc Dancing or my personal favourite, Fighting Invincible Ninjas. This type of dancing is primarily done to Metalcore or Hardcore music. If a person is new to it, they may think it’s silly and takes no talent when actually; it’s harder than it looks. Plus, it’s also a great workout.

Hardcore Dancing moves:

Opening The Pit – Usually done by a bigger mosher, the person will stand at the front of the crowd and push themselves backwards into the crowd. This gets everyone to move aside which forms a circle known as “The Pit”.

Two-stepping – The mosher will take their right leg and cross it over their left then cross their left over their right and continue this.

American two-stepping – Much like Two-stepping, the American two-step is almost the same except you don’t cross the legs, you bring them to the inside of your opposite leg.

Windmilling – What you do is crouch down a tiny bit then swing your right arm in a 360 motion in the air followed by your left. Usually, people get punched during this.

Picking Up The Change – There are many variations of this move since you can bend over and do it or bend backwards and do it. When bending over, you try to grab the floor with your right arm then left. This is often referred to as picking up the change, picking fruit or picking whatever you want. After doing this, you can also do a relaxed backwards windmill and pretend to be throwing what you pretended to pick up. Another version is called “Floor Punching” where you do the same thing but instead of trying to grab the floor, you try to punch it.

Ninja Kicking – Some people struggle with this one because you jump in the air and do a 360 kick. If anyone would like a demonstration, I can still do it.

Pogoing – Before the breakdown of a song, there may be a build-up. During this time, moshers will jump up and down and sometimes into each other.

One-Handed Flips – It’s not usually done but some people will do one-handed flips

Horse-kicking – This can be done when Windmilling. When one arm around is up in the air, you bend down and kick with the opposite leg (Example, if your right arm is up, you kick with your left, and vise versa)

Combos – Just mix up some different moves.

Teamwork – If the venue has a high enough roof, people will usually think of clever ways to throw another mosher high into the air using their back. It’s complicating and rare to see, but it’s been done.

Hurricane Spin – I only know this one because of a guy named Alex from back home in Belleville. This move is done during a Two-step. You move to one side of The Pit and spin through the other dancers whipping your strongest arm whilst turning. This usually results in someone getting punched in the face.

Rules for The Pit:

  1. If you don’t wish to participate, move to the side before the band starts.
  2. Make sure you don’t go in The Pit alone, you’ll look like an ass flailing your arms in the middle of a big circle by yourself.
  3. You join The Pit to dance to the music, not to smack people.
  4. You will get hit so chill out when you do.
  5. People take it seriously; so don’t make a joke out of it.
  6. Mainly, oversized sweaty men will be fighting invincible ninjas. I’m not trying to be sexist but it’s probably best for girls to just watch and have their guy friends make sure they done get hit.
  7. If you do smack a pretty girl by accident, tell her you’re sorry and buy her a drink. See how that turned into a small date?
  8. When you’re watching, be sure to watch the dancers. If and when they get close of hitting you, stick your arm out so they’ll hit it, not your face.

Recommended songs for moshing:

Blind Witness – ‘Baby, One More Notch’
Born of Osiris – ‘Bow Down’
Carpathian – ‘Who the Fuck Taught You Snaps?”
Emmure – ‘I Thought You Met Telly and Turned Me Into Casper’
Never See Tomorrow – ‘Hope is Only Skin Deep’
OH! – ‘Hoes & Money’
To The Lions – ‘Breathless’
Whitechapel – ‘Possession’

I hope this showed you the finer points of this popular dancing style.

Matt Main

  1. this is hardcore dancing:
    1: side to side
    2: swinging
    3: 2-step

    • Anonymous
    • January 28th, 2012

    Recommended songs, not so great. But seriously, metalcore? It’s not called metalcore dancing for a reason. 2 step isn’t always over the other leg. You missed side to side and circle pits.(probably because metalcore doesn’t have any). And going into the pit alone doesn’t make you look stupid. It isn’t about how you “look”. The people who start the pit by themselves should get props for starting up the pit. And songs that are amazing to dance to are;

    Out Of My Face by Terror
    Your Loss, Your Regrets by Down To Nothing
    The Blood Stays on the Blade by Your Demise
    Dead Weight by Cruel Hand
    Count Me In by Death Before Dishonor
    etc. etc. etc.

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