Don’t let his age fool you ‚Äď 21-year-old Franklin Yu, ex-co-director of ACA Hip Hop, has¬†led the team to multiple victories and taught¬†workshops around the world.

It can’t be easy¬†balancing his role as a full-time student at UCLA, but his love for dance makes the hustle worth it.

See Related Video: How To Balance School And Dance | Dancer Rants #3 | STEEZY Originals

First learning about choreography on the Diamond Bar High School All-Male Dance Team, Franklin then segued into dancing on teams like Miniotics, GRaVy Babies, GRV, and ACA.

But before the teams, he started with freestyle dancing.

“Having experience with freestyle gives you an artistic foundation because¬†you’re already making things on your own.”

See Related Article: 7 Exercises To Boost Your Popping Fundamentals From Charles Nguyen (Poreotics) 

Because his freestyle foundations were largely popping-based, his choreography incorporates a lot of quick, powerful, controlled movements.

He lets us in on some secrets that help him dance fast, strong, and with (almost) super-human precision.

Core Control and Power Distribution

Engage (but not necessarily flex) your core, throughout the piece.

There’s never a moment when you’re not using your stomach and chest.

If you flex too hard, you’ll lose control and end up looking shaky.

If you don’t tighten¬†enough, you’ll undershoot and have little control in your movement.

See Related Article: Want To Dance With More CONTROL? Read This

It’s about actively thinking about your stomach to find that balance between too tight and too loose.

This will help you achieve that “dime stop” look.

You can do sit ups and push ups to help make that engagement and control come more easily.

See Related Article: The Ultimate Guide To Execution Of Movement For Beginner Dancers

Precise Timing for Precise Pictures

When it comes to timing your stops, stop right ON the beat.

The “stop” was designated a specific count- the¬†peak¬†of that sound. Not the beginning nor the end.

If you try to stay “in the pocket,” you’ll be late. All of the counts in Franklin’s¬†pieces require that precision.

See Related Article: What Is The “Pocket”? And How Do I Dance In It?

To look clean for sequences of combos and moves, you have to focus on stopping on each point¬†of that “da-da-da” to make your moves more distinct.

Start slow. People think certain pieces are too fast, but that’s because they only see the final product.

Any piece that’s executed quickly has been worked up to that speed.

So start at a slow tempo, and drill. Work your way up by going quicker and quicker.

If you see someone doing it, know that it’s possible!

See Related Article: How To Dance Bigger, Stronger, And More Full Out

The Big Picture

When there’s a lot of arm movements in a piece dancers tend to focus only¬†on the limbs that they’re emphasizing in that moment.

But in the process, that makes you lose track of the entire picture.

See Related Article: How To Be A Cleaner Dancer

Every picture and every part that is involved, whether it’s your torso, a dead arm, your stance.. those are all intentional.

So don’t forget about the rest of your body!

Even if it’s not “a part of the move,” be aware of what it’s doing or where it is.

See Related Article: 8 Things Great Dancers Do Differently

 

These tips aren’t just restricted to popping or iso pieces ‚Äď they’ll¬†help you become better at executing any choreography that comes your way.

Thanks for sharing with us, Franklin!

 

Learn any (or ALL) of these pieces from Franklin on STEEZY Studio! Click here to get a free week!

Got any thoughts on being a conscientious and clean executor? Comment below and share with us! 

This article was originally published on October 1, 2015.