OLYMPICS

Get In The Games: ‘Breaking’ Olympic sport has a home in Utah

May 16, 2024, 2:42 PM | Updated: 2:42 pm

PROVO — A strip mall along the 3200 block of University Avenue in Provo has several businesses. However, every time the front door opens at one in particular, you can hear the fun coming from the inside.

And if you take a step inside, it is almost as if you have taken a step back to the 1980s.

“Yooo! That was fresh!” said one instructor.

“Nice!” said another.

It was just five years ago when Deon Thomas decided to open the Breakin Circles Dance Studio. Only, it is not called break dancing anymore.

It is simply “breaking” and it is now an Olympic sport.

“We are just on this giant trajectory of massive growth. It is incredible,” said Thomas.

Ever since opening day, Thomas says classes have been filling up.

Especially with kids.

“The studio is about finding your individuality it is about confidence,” Thomas said.

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It sure takes a lot of confidence to do these moves in front of others, making up your routine as you go along with the beat of the music. But that is also the point. Here, the only laughs are when you see someone pull off a move.

“It is absolutely safe and everybody here is respected and they are loved and they are valued for who they are,” Thomas said.

That is what 12-year-old Vivian McCarty loves about breaking, especially when you are in a dance battle with someone who pushes you even further.

“It is really fun to battle people because you can show how confident you are when you battle someone, and you are going against them, and there is showing your emotions, but then after the battle, you show them love and support,” McCarty said. Her parents drive her from Heber to Provo for lessons.

She thinks the respect toward your opponents are lessons in life beyond the dance studio.

“Yeah, it is so cool,” McCarty said.

With breaking having its Olympic debut in Paris this summer, Thomas is expecting a lot more parents wondering how they can get their kids into it.

“And once kids get a taste of it, I think it is really going to take off because, again, the positivity, the inclusiveness, it is just so powerful,” Thomas said.

The sport is also a lot of fun.

And it is another “breaking” Olympic sport, with a place to learn in Utah. that can be done right here in Utah.

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Get In The Games: ‘Breaking’ Olympic sport has a home in Utah