WATCHING breakdancers seemingly defy the laws of physics, it is easy to see why Rush Wepiha says there are no shortcuts to mastering the craft.
The Victoria Park-based dance teacher, with a resume that includes choreography for television shows and five Australia Bboy Championships, began his career on the streets of New Zealand.
He credits the dance element of hip hop with keeping him from following a more troubled path in life.
“It kind of kept me on track because when I got into it I was like ‘damn, I’ve got to practice to be good. I can’t hang out with the guys I am anymore,” he said.
“I knew I was going to have to train a lot.
“It teaches you a lot of good things; it teaches you to be healthy, be strong, respect.”
Breaking has taken Wepiha to all parts of the world, but one of his major focuses now is bringing through the next crop of future stars.
“Out of all the cities in Australia, Perth is probably one of the most talented in terms of what the youth have here,” he said.
Among those following his every move is Piara Waters junior Taj Ransom.
He took up breaking two years ago and mum Tara said he could not get enough.
“As soon as he saw Rush doing what he does, he just said ‘I want to do that’,” she said.
“He’s a shy kid but he’s completely different when he’s breaking.”
Taj, along with Seville Grove’s Matvey Orlov, will be among more than 100 kids taking part in the Junior Breaking Championships at the Cockburn Youth Centre this Saturday.
Wepiha said the competition would “open a lot of people’s minds to what kids can do”.
Junior Breaking Championships.
12pm to 5pm Saturday, September 12.
Cockburn Youth Centre, 25 Wentworth Parade, Success.
Tickets: Spectators – $15, competitors – $10, under 5 – free.
For information follow the WA Junior Breaking Champs on Facebook or email .