Dancers around the world are neither appreciated nor recognized within the sports community. Last year, LSU refused to fund and send the Tiger Girls to the competition. This year, though, the LSU Tiger Girls Dance Team competed and won the 2022 UDA D1A Hip Hop National Championship. Dancing to Ciara’s “Like A Boy,” the Tiger Girls shared a message with LSU and the entire dance community: men's sports are funded and praised, yet "women's sports" must fight for their position. This win was a win for the entire female dance community. Every team cheered on the Tiger Girls and pushed more ambition towards one another. Dance connects ambitious collegiate women; this connection leads to success and growth.
Gender inequality in sports is an issue that has had more attention within the past decade. It is known throughout the world that gender inequality occurs in all countries. In the U.S., female collegiate athletes must fight for their position in a game they are more than qualified to play. The Tiger Girls’ dance showed strength through the movements and a level of professionalism. From the beginning to the end of the piece, the women showed strength in their performance, and had a clear sense of purpose, as shown in their facial expressions. Dance tells a story, and a story was most definitely told.
TRIBE 99, which came up with the iconic choreography, “is a dance company that exists to inspire and build authentic relationships with dancers and coaches across the globe.” The dance went viral on TikTok for its “fire” choreography and energy behind each move, thanks to the TikTok algorithm.
Not only are young girls learning this dance, but they are also reading up on the significance behind it. Take a look at this stellar choreography! Social media is allowing for the Tiger Girls’ story to be shared with the world. It is essential to acknowledge the inequalities that occur, to push and advocate for what is right.
Carsen Rowe is the founder of TRIBE 99 and built up her dance company with her experiences. Not only has she had her own big moments, but she is giving the opportunities to other dancers to make their own.
A win for one female dance group is a win for all. Many dance teams experience the same inequalities brought upon them by their universities. Dance is a sport; women are strong, ambitious, and deserve the same opportunities given to men’s sports teams.