Dancing is one of the purest forms of human expression. Live Science suggests that dancing became a part of our evolutionary advantages, as humans who were coordinated were better able to survive. There have been hundreds of styles of dancing all across humanity's history, and they all had more or less the same goal - to offer people a way to express themselves. Social media channel TikTok is the latest method dancers use for getting their moves out to a broader audience. These impromptu dancers usually don't take dance classes, nor are they part of the traditional idea of dance. They each have their own style. From this social media soup, a technique called "waaking" has emerged, particularly among Gen Z people, who are also the most active taking group travel options for 18-30-year-olds. But what is this type of dancing, and what makes it so attractive to young people across the world?
The Roots of Waaking
While many people may think that waaking is a new phenomenon, it's actually been around for a long time. The Radio Times mentions that waaking was initially coined as a style in the 70s. It shares a lot of culture with the period's struggle for gay rights and acceptance in society. Unfortunately, it was during the 70s that a virus also almost wiped it out. The AIDS pandemic dealt blow after blow to the practitioners of the art. luckily, some of the pioneers of the format found themselves on the famous TV show Soul Train and managed to pass on their legacy through the moves.
Falling Into Oblivion Temporarily
The early 80s saw waaking fade into oblivion, with only a handful of people keeping it alive. The style was closely related to Vogue, and when Madonna released her single of the same name, that dance style took over. But waaking wasn't dead. It re-emerged years later, as a force for empowerment. Modern dancers are adopting the style and meshing it with their own individual types of dancing. It's wild and freeform, making it easily adaptable to almost any move set. The popularity of this dance art seems to be picking up momentum thanks to its visibility on TikTok.
Social Media Breathes Life into Waaking
Social media stars have combined the freeform dance with whirling movements and seemingly strange choreography with their own styles. One practitioner, Kumari Suraj, has blended the technique with her Southeast Asian roots creating something she called Bollywaack. In Taiwan, people see it as a way of self-expression they've never witnessed before. Some see it as a way to help them be themselves. If anything, this newfound resurgence of popularity has led to the dance achieving its goals to free people's spirits.
Not Over Yet
Some of the older practitioners of the art are dying off. Yet they successfully passed on their love of the dance style and their sick moves to their students. This new wave of waaking might see it become even more popular than its original iteration. It's a testament, not only to the power of waaking as a style but to the outreach of TikTok as a social media giant.