Glossary of Terms

  • 2-Step

    The 2-step is a dance move that is often the first sequences learned by breakdancers.

    Many breakdance moves begin from the 2-step position.

  • 2000

    The 2000 resembles a quickly spinning handstand.

    This move is considered a power move due to its flashy nature and significant momentum.

  • 6-Step

    Like the 2-step but with more structure.

    Each of the six steps places the body in a different position, which can then be used as launching points into other moves.

  • A

  • Advanced Level

    The next level of square dancing above Plus which consists of a total of 81 calls.

    This is in addition to the Mainstream andPlus level calls.

  • Angel

    An experienced dancer who attends classes to fill out squares and help the caller demonstrate the proper way to perform various movements.

  • APD

    All Position Dancing.

    Dancing either the belle's or beau's position from standard formations of square dancing calls.

  • B

  • Banner Stealing

    The practice of a square or more of dancers (8+ dancers) from one club attending another club's dance and receiving the other club's banner until the visit (or raid) is reciprocated.

  • B-Boying

    The history of these terms is obscure. "Break" may have been popularised by the DJ Kool Herc, who used the call "B-boys go down" to cue dancers to start moving to the virtuoso percussion breaks he mixed on his turntables.

    The term "boying" may simply reflect the overwhelmingly male profile of the break scene, hence the recent PC introduction of the term B-girling. But some argue the term derives from the African word "boioing" meaning hop or jump.

  • Beau

    The dancer in the left-hand position, relative to his (or her) partner.

  • Belle

    The dancer in the right-hand position, relative to his (or her) partner.

  • C

  • Caller

    The person who directs dancers through a square dance.

  • Caller Lab

    The International Association of Square Dance Callers.

  • Crash and Burn

    A term used when your square need to return to your home positions.

  • Cuer

    The person directing round dancers during a round dance.

  • D

  • Dancing Calls

    The following are the levels of square dancing calls and the order that they are taught:

    • 1. Mainstream
    • 2. Plus
    • 3. A-1 (Advanced)
    • 4. A-2 (Advanced)
    • 5. C-1 (Challenge)
    • 6. C-2 (Challenge)
    • 7. C-3A (Challenge)
  • Dangle

    A small plastic or metal object which attaches to a badge, using only a single metal ring.

    This object can symbolize a variety of things, including such items as visitations, callers, special events, etc.

  • DBD

    Dancing By Definition.

    Where individual calls can be broken into their component parts, so that a call can be danced from any position on the floor, including dancing a call from a different starting position.

  • Down Rock

    Breakdance style that places all footwork and moves on the floor.

    Downrock is usually performed with the feet and hands on the floor. Downrock’s counterpart is “Uprock.”

  • H

  • Home Position

    Your position within the square at the beginning of the tip.

  • Hot Hash

    A special tip with no pauses between each of the formations, and is generally considered a challenge.

    The tempo of the music is also increased, adding to the difficulty.

    This is usually done to basic/mainstream calls (i.e. no Plus).

  • L

  • Locking

    A playful staccato style developed by Don Campbell on the west coast and originally called the Campbell Lock.

    Dancers move rapidly through a series of split second poses that are often taken from everyday life - such as tilting a hat or looking at a watch.

  • M

  • Mainstream Level

    The beginning level of square dancing which consists of 68 calls.

  • Moonwalk

    Name wrongly given to the robotic glide popularised by Michael Jackson.

    Jackson actually danced a backslide; the moonwalk, a typical move from the Boogaloo style, doesn't travel.

  • N

  • New Skool

    Late freestyle phase of hip-hop fusing a wide range of moves.

  • O

  • Old Skool

    Early phase of hip-hop in which dancers retained clear distinctions between close-to-the-floor moves and more vertical styles.

  • P

  • Patter Call

    A single tune, used by a caller as background for a series of calls, with no lyrics accompanying the music.

    Couples will be moved in a variety of formations, but brought back to their home position before the next set of calls.

    This may occur several times during the patter call.

  • Plus Level

    The next level of square dancing from Mainstream which consists of 32 additional calls in addition to mainstream calls.

  • Popping

    Variant of locking in which poses are linked into more fluid movement, credited to Popin Pete, dancer with the Electric Boogaloos.

  • Power Move

    Power moves encompass a variety of moves using momentum, speed and acrobatic elements.

    These moves are often the main focus of routines featuring other dancers and elements of hip hop.

  • S

  • Stab

    A one handed handstand or spin in the Down Rock position.

    With the elbow pushed against the side of the ribs, or if strenght permits, a fully extended arm in a power move or hold position.

  • Singing Call

    A single call where the caller will mix square dance directions with singing.

    Ladies will rotate between each man in the square during the song, usually in a counter-clockwise direction.

  • Square

    A square consists of four couples.

    The couple who's back is to the caller is referred to as the couple

    #1. The couple directly in front of them is couple

    #3. Both couple #1 and #3 are called Head Couples.

    The couple to the right of Couple #1 is called Couple #2.

    The couple to the left of Couple #1 is called Couple #4.

    Both Couple #2 and #4 are called Side Couples.

    The person to your left is called your Corner.

  • Square Ware

    Preferred square dancing attire.

  • Square Your Sets

    The caller is requesting you return to your home positions.

  • Stir the Bucket

    Where each couple in a square moves to the next counter-clockwise position.

  • Suicide (b-boy)

    A sudden drop in the dancers back often with a break at the knees.

    Designed to look as if the dancer were going to fall completely on their back.

  • T

  • Tip

    A square dance session consisting of two parts, a patter call and a singing call.

    The patter call consists of a rapid-fire sequence of spoken calls which lead the dancers through intricate and unpredictable patterns.

    There is usually background music to provide a basic beat, but the emphasis is on dance as an intellectual exercise.

    In the singing call, the moves are much more predictable and usually consist of sequences practiced during the patter call.

    The caller usually sings a popular song with the calls interspersed between the phrases and the emphasis is on dancing to the music.

  • U

  • Uprock Mock (Top Rock)

    Combats staged by early dance crews, which resembled fast, rhythmic versions of a kung fu fight.

    The dancers had to remain as close as possible without touching and often traded moves.

    Rocking is also a generic term for early hip-hop dance with the subcategory "down rock" denoting moves performed close to the floor, and "top rock" denoting those where dancers remain standing on their feet.

  • W

  • Windmill

    A sustained backspin, one of hip-hop's most distinctive power moves.

  • Y

  • Yellow Rock

    A friendly hug