Bboy Speedy Legs, born Ricardo Fernandez Jr, is widely accredited for creating the blueprint for competitive breaking competitions in the United States. His lifelong mission was always to get the art form of breaking recognized as an athletic sport.
He has been the driving force of the Florida Bboy scene since 1981 and he’s considered one of the leading Hip Hop Dance innovators in the world, due to his contributions of founding the B-boy Masters Pro-Am and Hip Hop Elements.
first clothing line exclusively for Bboys & Bgirls and started getting involved with community Hip Hop events.In 1986, he came up with the name Hip Hop Elements for a live performance piece. In 1992, he launched the
In 1996, Speedy Legs founded the Bboy Masters Pro-Am with Zulu Gremlin.
It was the FIRST and ONLY annual battle in the United States at the time, the FIRST Bboy conference in the world with educational panels and the ONLY event in the world that INNOVATED separate dance categories for: Bboys, Bgirls, Crews, Poppin’, Lockin’, UpRockin’, Power Moves, Bonnie & Clyde, Veteran, Abstract dance styles etc. It was also the ONLY event to showcase battles in all the other elements of Hip Hop consistently and held yearly DJ, MC, Beatbox and Graffiti contests.
In 1998, he asked DJ Trails to join him and they took Hip Hop Elements to the next level.
Speedy has over 40 years of experience as a professional dancer and choreographer. His performances include motion pictures, the off-Broadway show Jam On The Groove, and countless concerts alongside great artist such as: Run DMC, Afrika Bambaattaa, Kool Herc, Wu-Tang Clan, Mos-Def, Tony Touch, Beaine Man, & Buju Banton. In 2003, he was hired by Wyclef to choreograph and perform in the opening show of the SOURCE AWARDS Live on BET. In 2005, Richard was commissioned to choreograph a 70 minute theater show titled, “Scratch & Burn” for the Miami Light Project. He was also the first artist to bring Hip Hop into the Miami Light Project organization in 2002. During his long career, Mr. Fernandez has made numerous media appearances on ESPN, UPN, NBC, Unavision, Telemundo, The New York Times, Washington Post, Miami Herald, Sun Sentinel, Stress, Source, Rap Pages, Blaze Magazine and hundreds of websites.
While he mostly grew up in Miami, he spent the later half of the 1980’s and early 1990’s living in New York and pursuing his dreams of battling the originators of the dance. It was during this time that he grew close roots and won the respect of organizations like Zulu Nation and members of historical Bboy crews. While the scene in New York was dying out, Speedy Legs returned to Florida, started the Pro-Am with Zulu Gremlin, and put Miami on the map by inspiring a whole new generation of bboy superstars in crews like: Street Masters, Ground Zero, Flipside Kings, Skill Methodz, Illmatic Flow, Unique Styles, Mind 180, Future Force, Raw Meat and many more. His website, HipHopElements.com was also one of the first Hip Hop Dance websites on the net, up since 1999. Once the host of his own radio show and a DJ since 1987, Richard was constantly working as an entertainer and deeply involved with the community. Mr. Fernandez spent 25+ years teaching dance classes to underpriviliged children and young adults at centers like the Hollywood Police Athletic League, The Boys & Girls Club and various Miami recreation centers. Local newspapers and television stations have done story after story about his efforts to keep kids off the streets and involved in positive recreational activities.
Currently, Speedy Legs is retired from dancing due to a hip replacement surgery in 2011. Although he still gets down a little bit, he mainly works on producing the Miami Pro-Am and is frequently invited as a guest speaker, judge and award recipient at other major dance events across North America. The Miami Pro-Am, which he founded in 1996, is an annual event and one of the largest dance competitions on the East Coast of the United States. It consists of a 4 to 5 day conference with panels, performances, art galleries, several categories of dance competitions and MC/DJ Battles. Guests have traveled from all over the world and have even included many of the founding fathers of Hip Hop Culture. The DVDs and Videos from these events have been distributed internationally and helped set the standard for dance competitions world wide. Many famous dancers that are featured in today’s hottest films, television shows, music videos and concert tours have been directly influenced by Speedy Legs and his events. A documentary about his struggle to have Hip Hop Dancers treated with the same respect and professionalism as other dance styles is set to release in late 2021. Mr. Fernandez is a pioneer of the art and is internationally recognized as the Godfather of the Florida Hip Hop Dance Scene. He remains an icon and positive role model to dancers and hip hop fans world wide.
The History of Breaking as a Sport
Read more about the evolution of Breakin as a sport.