How To Swipe: Your Basic Bboy Powermove (Part 2)
Are you ready to finish learning the swipe? Now that you have practiced holding the one-handed table position, as well as switching the supporting arms effectively, it should make your next progressions easier.
STEP 2: Arm Swings Over and Legs Follow
Get back into the one-handed table position. Make sure that your upper body is parallel to the floor, and that your knees are bent at 90 degrees.
This part of the move is where beginners get confused. Often times, it’s because they are trying to go faster than they should… so start slow, and then build up your speed.
You will take the arm that’s up in the air, and whip it straight over and across your body (while keeping it straight for momentum). This arm should be aimed at landing shoulder-width apart (on the side that you’re swinging it, obviously).
Here comes the tricky part.
As this arm swings up and over, you will push off hard with both of your legs (so they can follow the rotation of your upper body).
Once your legs are off the ground and rotating, try to keep them bent at the knees (90 degrees ideally). This will make it easier for you to land.
The arm that swung over will now land to the side your body (your legs should still be in the air). Put all your weight on that arm (once it has landed).
You can now lift up the other arm, as your feet hit the floor. Quickly readjust your body so that you’re once again in a one-handed table position (with the opposite arm in the air).
From this position, you can switch arms (just like we practiced in Part 1), and do it again. Keep practicing until it looks smooth.
If you’re doing it for the first time, I suggest that you read these instructions a couple of times and watch related videos, before trying it out. This way, you know what good form looks like, and you can practice it the right way, right from the beginning.
VARIATION: One-Legged Swipe
Some bboys find it easier to swipe with one leg constantly in the air. You can try it out using the following technique.
If you’re throwing your right arm over to your left when you rotate, then your left leg should stay in the air (for the one-legged variation). The opposite is also true if you're more comfortable doing it on the other side.
When practicing this move, the leg that’s in air should be kept relatively straight. This leg will also act as an axis for your body to turn around.
It becomes more difficult to keep a good table position (and nice form) when doing the one-legged variation because you’ll only have one arm and one leg on the ground (with the others up in the air).
Exercises for Perfection
1) Practice doing one or two swipes on one side, and then doing the same on the other side. This will quickly help you to develop the muscles and coordination needed for good form (if you concentrate on keeping a nice table position when your feet are planted).
2) Once you’re comfortable with your this move, practice transitioning into various other moves from it (windmill, baby freeze, chair freeze, handstand freeze, 1990, etc.).
3) Practice getting into the swipe from your toprock. This is done by swinging one leg back as you bring the opposite hand to the floor (this hand lands close to where the foot that’s swinging was).
As this hand lands, push off (upwards) with your second leg to get it up in the air. You can now put the second hand down as your body rotates on that first arm.
Put all your weight on the arm that just landed, and lift up the hand that had landed first. As you do this, you want to rotate your upper body so that your chest faces up as your feet hit the floor.
As you practice this, try to land in the one-handed table position. You will eventually be able to continue into the swipe without readjustments.
Remember to warm-up before practicing this… and have fun with it.
Go to How To Swipe - Part 1
Go from How To Swipe - Part 2 to Medium Moves
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