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80s Popular Dances

by Kim

The 1980s was the era of disco and the great dance music that evolved from it. The definition of what constitutes a dance move is so broad, that in many cases, you could say that any random move you did in high school was a dance move you can use for many years to come.

Some people may find these dances hard to remember and some may not understand them at all. However, if you have ever been interested in learning how to do the most popular dances from the 1980s era, then this article is probably for you.

The Moonwalk

An interesting dance move that people perform is the moonwalk. The moonwalk, also known as the backslide or the glide, is a dance move in which the dancer glides backwards, but the dancer appears to be walking forward. This is a trick that Michael Jackson first performed during a live performance of Billie Jean. It then became one of his most prominent signature moves.

The Wop

The wop is a dance move where the dancer punches up to the opposite side of the room. During the 80s, it became popularized by the song “Woppit” by B-Fats, where it was then performed by many people. The song, released in 1986, described how to do the dance move. You can see this cool groove in many music videos from the 1980s.

The Cabbage Patch

Another quirky dance move found in the 80s is the Cabbage Patch move. It is a dance move that involves the dancer moving their fists in a circular motion, in either a clockwise or counter clockwise direction, sometimes including the shoulders and upper torso. The movement is also similar to the act of churning butter, as an example.

This dance is a result of the popular doll that children played with, called the Cabbage Patch Kids. However, the people who created it were the Gucci Crew II, who released a song of the same name in 1987.

The Sprinkler

Sprinklers are another imitation dance move that resembles the motion of a garden sprinkler. You must hold one of your hands over the back of the person who is dancing, and wave one of your hands to the side of the person who is dancing. Then that person spins in a circular motion. This routine first appeared on MTV in 1987, and it has been performed many times ever since.

The “Thriller” Move

Following the signature moonwalk, Michael Jackson also popularized the signature movement from his hit song “Thriller.” The dance move is a lot simpler, and is made to mimic the movement of a zombie, referencing the zombie concept of the song’s music video.

The dance continues to be performed in pop culture, even making appearances in some movies and TV shows. This includes a scene from an episode of Glee, where characters performed a mashup of the song, as well as a dance scene on 13 Going on 30 (2004), a movie by Gany Winick.

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