Sport or Not: Moshing

Art credit: Greta Hahn

I’ve contracted more bruises from feral flailing in a pit of sweaty, Zeppelin muscle-tee-styled indie boys in a dingy New Paltz basement to Foo Fighters’ covers than from any officially recognized quote-unquote sport.

Any college kid who attended a school with a bustling underground music scene knows to mosh (and doing so safely) is a skilled art that takes as much practice — if not more — as tackling a running back.

To mosh successfully one need to remember three things: stamina, strength and STAND UP!

Stamina — You need to have an endless supply of energy from the moment you step into that pit to the time you sprint or get knocked out. If you can’t match the energy of the crowd around you, you’ll be a goner before the second chorus of “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”

Strength — You have elbows — use them. You need to know how to get the aggressively feral metalheads off of you if things are feeling a little too “bumper cars” for your liking … but also … There’s nothing worse than a half-hearted mosh, so if you’re looking to get the blood pumping, push that irritatingly looking Sid Vicious wannabe with everything that you have. To incite chaos in the pit is to be a hero.

STAND T.F. UP — If all your moshing fails you and you find yourself on the beer and sweat-stained floor seconds from being trampled … STAND UP! Screw The Cranberries, do not let it linger, get on your feet and get right back to head banging.

Moshing is a beautiful sport of pure energy, passion, rage and camaraderie. If you’re prepared for the responsibility, get ready to step into the most exhilarating, filthy sports there is — it even comes with its own built-in soundtrack!

*Disclaimer: I didn’t mean what I said about The Cranberries.