This document outlines the formation and development of Worth the Weight, or WTW, a platform that seeks to sustain the Breaking community in Phoenix, Arizona and connect the generations by bringing them together in a newly and never before seen event in Breaking, an all weight class and division competition. In the last five to ten years there has been a noticeable decline in the local Breaking community, in part due to the introduction of new dance categories, economic and social changes, the cross over of academia and traditional studios in Phoenix; all combining to create a lack of longevity in veterans of the culture to pass on the tools of the trade to the next generation.
WTW is an event that occurs monthly for three consecutive months followed by a month off, totaling nine events and three seasons per calendar year. At each event dancers go head to head in battle in a single elimination style bracket, where they will add a loss or win to their overall season record. The goals of WTW are self-empowerment as well as ownership and investment in the community by those involved through participation in both the event and the planning process; all built on a foundation of trust within the Breaking community. This researcher has thirty years of direct involvement in the Breaking culture with twenty-two of those years as a practitioner in Phoenix, Arizona and co-founder of Furious Styles Crew, Arizona’s longest running Breaking crew. The development of WTW was drawn from this experience along with interviews and observations of Breaking communities worldwide. WTW intends to provide a reliable and consistent outlet during a time of instant gratification, allowing a space for self-discovery and the development of tools to be applied beyond movement. It is hoped that the format of WTW will be a model that can be adapted by other Breaking communities worldwide.
- Worth the weight: the sustainability of breaking culture in Phoenix, Arizona