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Lacombe teen hopes to represent Canada in breakdancing at Youth Olympic Games
Published Wednesday, September 13, 2017 3:48PM MDT
Next year will mark the first time breakdancing - or breaking - will be considered a sport in the Youth Olympic Games, and 15-year-old Jayden Adler is hoping she’ll make it to the international stage.
The Lacombe teen has only been enrolled in dance for three years.
She fell in love with hip-hop and breaking when she saw a group from Red Deer’s Pound It Dance Studio performing.
“The attitude is a lot different, you want to be super cheeky and it’s really fun to watch people do it, and it’s a lot of fun to do as well,” explained Jayden.
Next month she’ll compete for a spot to represent her country in the 2018 Games in Buenos Aires.
“It’s actually kind of astounding actually, I didn’t expect to get into it,” she said.
She submitted a video to Breaking for Gold earlier this summer, and was accepted to take part in the next qualifying round.
She’s now taking here training to the next level, practicing two hours a day to get ready for the competition in Philadelphia in October.
“I went from learning how to do the simple steps, and now I’m starting to learn how to do power which is a lot harder,” Jayden explained power moves include work on the floor, doing headstands, windmills with your legs, and more.
For her instructor Rico Martinez, helping his dancers reach new heights is a dream come true.
“It means everything to me. When I opened this studio I opened it with a purpose, I wanted the youth and the kids to do something positive,” said Martinez.
But he’s helping her get both her dance moves and mindset ready for the competition.
“She’s battle ready, and its nerve wracking and I know she's nervous but I think that it's important for her to have fun with it,” he explained.
Jayden’s mom Sharon Adler is proud of her daughter’s accomplishment.
“She’s shown so much growth and so much strength, she's developing more confidence in herself and her abilities,” said Sharon.
The teen, who’s now managing school and a busy training schedule, is still trying to wrap her head around it all. “I have to convince myself, ‘you're here, you're going’ and my brain still hasn't processed it.”
Still, Jayden’s excited for the new challenge and has some advice for young girls like her:
“You got to remember to believe in yourself when you do it.”
Should Jayden make it through the October qualifying round, she’ll head to Japan in the New Year for the last stage before the Youth Olympic Games.