Types of Moshing

By Shelly Barclay ; Updated September 15, 2017

Moshing is a type of dance that involves groups of people. It is most common among fans of hardcore, punk, metal and death metal music genres. Most forms of moshing involve violent movements and/or shoving, so there is some danger involved with moshing. Moshing can even result in death if the crowd is violent or a mosh pit gets out of control.

Slam Dancing

Slam dancing is the forerunner to modern moshing and is often a synonym for moshing. Slam dancing involves thrashing around in mosh pits -- circular clearings, typically on the dance floors of concert venues. Slam dancers swing their arms and kick their feet to the music. While slam dancing technically does not involve hitting other people, it often happens anyway, due to accidents or aggressive mosh pit participants.

Circle Moshing

Circle moshing involves running or marching around in circles. A group of audience members will all start moving in a circular motion together. There is sometimes pushing involved, but this type of moshing does not involve thrashing or hitting.

Wall of Death

The wall of death is a relatively new form of moshing. Participants move to either side of the dance floor -- typically at the request of the band -- and then run at each other from either side. Once the group meets in the middle, there may be pushing, hitting, thrashing, slam dancing or any form of moshing. Walls of Death get their name from their sheer violence and size.

Hardcore Pit Dancing

Hardcore pit dancing is an amalgam of three types of moshing and hardcore dancing. There is head banging, which is jerking your head up and down to the rhythm of the music and pogoing, which is rapidly jumping up and down. There is also slam dancing in hardcore moshing.

Ninja Moshing

Ninja moshing is a form of moshing generally disliked by participants of other kinds of mosh. It involves frenzied mimicry of martial arts, such as kicking, punching and karate chopping. It also involves a move known as windmilling -- moving both arms in vertical circles. The goal is not necessarily to hit other moshers. However, the nature of ninja moshing often leads to accidents and often causes fights when other moshers are injured.

Push Moshing

Push moshing is moshing that does not involve hitting or thrashing. Moshers in these pits jump around and bump into each other. The pushing can be more like shoving and may be violent, but most of the danger in these mosh pits lies in falling down. It is common etiquette to stop moshing and help up any person that falls in a push pit.

About the Author

Shelly Barclay began writing in 1990, focusing on fiction. She has been writing nonfiction articles since 2008. Her work appears on various websites, focusing on topics such as history, cooking, scrapbooking, travel and animals. Before she began writing, Barclay was a line cook for 10 years.