Air flare innovator seeks recognition
The 2012 Olympics has been and gone after taking place in London this August and brought back many gold medals for many of the nations involved.
But another thing the Olympics has brought back for b-boys is a matter that means a lot - the ownership of one particular move: The Hamminator. At least, that’s what b-boys fear it may become misrepresented as: The actual move in question is the continuous air flare, and it’s sparking online debates and a movement to get the correct name recognised by the International Olympic Committee through an online petition organised by Charles "Goku" Montgomery and Curtis "Pan" Hedges of Soul Control.
We were only a few days into the Olympics when we re-posted a grainy, self-shot video of the men's gymnastics event on our Facebook page that featured a move that looked suspiciously like an air flare.
Max Whitlock's gymnastic set included many b-boy repertoire moves: air tracks to a flare into what was definitely an air flare - even the comments underneath the video claiming "he's a bboy!"
For the sake of the argument it would be unfair to judge and assume that gymnasts have never crossed paths with b-boys in the past – in fact Morgan Hamm, the American gymnast in question who many fear the air flare will be mislabelled as, learnt the moves from b-boys himself!
It’s no secret that many iconic dance moves, including the Moonwalk (or the backslide) were taught to the stars by a dancer that passed on their knowledge. But this is hip hop, a culture that champions being revolutionary and making sure the innovators are always remembered.
In 1998, Pablo Flores, a member of a dance team called Climax Soul Control was recorded on video doing two air flares in a row for the first time in b-boy history.
A little research on YouTube uncovers home videos of the development of the move from 1998 as Flores threw in the move into 90s, 2000s and flare transitions.
The objective of the petition by Goku and Pan of Soul Control is to get 100,000 online signatures - a mean feat and a steep challenge - to make sure that the air flare is accredited and recognised as a b-boy move and not a gymnastic repertoire.
Attention is paid to the title of “continuous air flare” in respect that earlier versions of an air flare may have only included one repetition.
Want to sign the continuous air flare petition? See here
What do you think? Is 100,000 signatures an impossible feat? Are b-boys worrying over something that might be forgotten until the next Olympics?
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