Contrary to popular (and mainstream media) belief, there is more than one way to dance at a metal event. Heavy metal has been around for close to 50 years and for sure it doesn’t sound the same as back then, so it’s only obvious that dance styles have also evolved.
Dancing is not a minor detail either: knowing the moves can make or break someone’s reputation, and there have been issues of people ending in brawls because their moving was getting someone nervous or was being criticized.
There are mainly three styles of heavy metal-inspired dancing:
- Headbanging, the most famous one, consists of shaking violently one’s head back and forth in time with the music. A variation called Demon’s Whip has people shaking their heads from side to side;
- Moshing (derived from “Mosh Pit”) isn’t made on one’s own but rather includes a large number of participants, who slam their bodies into those of the other people present. It can feature someone jumping on the crowd (“Crowd Surfing”) after climbing on stage – as this happens at concerts;
- Thor’s Hammer is a variation of headbanging. While shaking one’s head, a fist hits rhythmically a knee or a leg.