Miley Cyrus helps everyone find their inner twerker

Twerking. We have all seen it, we have all tried it, but only Miley Cyrus can call herself the queen of twerking.

According to The Lapine, “Prime Minister Stephen Harper told a group of community leaders that he enjoys ‘tweaking’ but only with close friends and every now and then with President Obama.”

Twerking has been defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as “dance to popular music in a sexually provocative manner, involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance.”

While many are under the impression that tweaking was recently invented, it can actually be traced back to the 1993 bounce music scene in New Orleans.

Following this, musicians, such as the Yin Yang Twins, Beyonce and Justin Timberlake mentioned twerking in their songs, giving it more recognition.

Since then, Miley Cyrus has taken twerking to a whole new level.

It all started in 2010, when Cyrus traveled to New Orleans to film “So Undercover.”

According to Fuse, this is where Cyrus first learned the art of twerking. The rest is history.

The dance is so physically strenuous that some even consider twerking a sport. The Twerk Team, composed of three teenage girls from Atlanta, has reinforced the idea of twerking as exercise since 2009.

Can twerking actually be considered a sport, or even a form of exercise? “Anything that involves body movements can be considered a form of exercise,” said senior Kevin Tiller.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines sport as “a physical activity that is done for enjoyment,” so according to this definition, yes, twerking can be considered a sport.

“The booty dancing move is a good “twerkout” for your butt and thighs,” said Michelle Olson, professor of exercise science and a certified strength and conditioning coach at

Auburn University, in an ABC News Article. “It also works the deep muscles of the hips and the core muscles of the lower back and abdominals.”

Just imagine Monday night twerk contests on the ESPN. “If there was a competition with judges involved with different twerking teams and different categories of judgment, then I guess you could consider twerking a sport,” said sophomore Trenor Colby.

Many people cannot even begin to consider whether or not this dance is a sport due to their concern with the racial and cultural issues tied to twerking.

Following Cyrus’ performance at the MTV Video Music Awards, the public became outraged by her behavior on the basis that this was “cultural appropriation at its worst,” according to The Guardian.

While possibly unintentional, Miley chose to use only African American females as her backup dancers. “The African American women in Miley’s video were portrayed as ratchet,” said junior runner Jasmine O’Neill. “She created the stigma that these are the type of people that twerk, and she wants to twerk just like them.”

This is where Cyrus crossed the line into controversial and potentially racist territory. “She used the tedious trope of having black women as her backing singers, there only to be fondled by her and to admire her wiggling derriere,” said Hadley Freeman in an editorial for The Guardian. “Cyrus is explicitly imitating crunk music videos and the sort of hip-hop she finds so edgy,”

Did Cyrus have racist intentions in mind while performing, or was this simply a bold career move? The answer is most likely the latter.

“Miley’s been very smart in all of her moves,” said freshman Najha Zigbi-Johnson. “She knows that tweaking is going to give her attention, which she needs with her new album coming out.

“Everyone is saying ‘Miley’s crazy,’ but all of these people will buy her album.”

While there are right and wrong ways to do everything, Cyrus is an example of the wrong way to twerk.

Twerking should not be done to mimic African American culture, but rather to embrace this culture while partaking in a fun, physically challenging activity.

“Twerking is something that everyone should be able to enjoy,” said Christa Wellhausen, part-time lecturer in theatre studies and sports studies.