Twerking (/twɜrkɪŋ/) is a type of dancing in which the dancer, usually a woman, shakes her hips in an up-and-down bouncing motion, causing the dancer's buttocks to shake, "wobble" and "jiggle".[1] According to the Oxford Dictionary Online, to twerk is "to dance to popular music in a sexually provocative manner involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance".[2]

The word twerking is of uncertain origin. Possibilities include a contraction of "footwork", or a portmanteau of twist and jerk.[1]

Twerking received recognition in national releases at least as early as the year 2000, when the Atlanta-based Ying Yang Twins released their debut single "Whistle While You Twurk", which received national airplay peaking at #17 on the Hip Hop Chart and was further referenced in their 2002 follow-up release, "Say I Yi Yi", which prominently features the lyrics "She got her hands up on her knees and her elbows on her thighs, she like to twerk and that's for certain I can tell that she fly". In 2011, the Twerk Team was mentioned in the song "Round of Applause" by Atlanta-based rapper Waka Flocka Flame featuring Drake, including the line, "Bounce that ass, shake that ass like the Twerk Team".[3] Bandz A Make Her Dance rapper Juicy J has a lyric, "Start twerking when she hear her song",[8] while French Montana questions the ability of a girl to twerk by asking, "What you twerkin' with" in his song "Pop That" featuring Drake, Lil Wayne and Rick Ross.[9] The song, along with "Express Yourself" by Nicky Da B & Diplo, "Made twerking the most popular dance move since the Dougie".[10]

In 2013, 33 students from Scripps Ranch High School in San Diego were suspended for using school equipment to make a twerking video on school grounds that was later uploaded to YouTube.[11][12]

In August 2013 a song featuring Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber called "Twerk" leaked online.[13]

Juicy J has announced via Twitter that he is giving out a $50,000 scholarship for the girl who can twerk the best. The competition is inspired by the track "Scholarship" on his upcoming album Stay Trippy, which contains the lyric "Keep twerking baby, might earn you a scholarship."[14]

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