Catch up : What is fist bumping and why we use it?

History of the fist bump

The history of the "fist bump" is a little hazy. We should all know by now --by reading the outstanding article on the hand shake-- that the handshake originated in the dark ages as a sign of peace. The history of the fist bump on the other hand, is not so cut and dry.

Historians believe that the fist bump, also known as Power five, dap, fist pound, and brofist, is an evolution of the "handshake" and the "high five". Here is a simple graphic to demonstrate the evolution of the handshake over the centuries into what is now commonly known as "the fist bump".

evolution of the fist bump

It is said in the historical documents, aka Time and Wikipedia, that it was --perhaps-- athletes who invented the "high five" which later turned into the fist bump. See, athletes felt that shaking hands in celebration of a great play was just too quiet and boring. So in creating the high five, they were able to slap hands quickly with other teammates creating a louder, and much faster celebration.

While throwing around "High Fives" in sports like football, basketball, and baseball were all the rage, other sports such as boxing and Hockey had to find another way to celebrate seeing how their hands where taped up and stuffed in big gloves. Thus comes the fist bump. Transpiring from a high five, the fist bump was initially a greeting. It was used as a sign of respect at the beginning of a game or boxing match. Still much used today, you can see boxers, MMA fighters, and hockey players bump gloves or fists at the beginning of a match.

Fist bumping has turned into not only a greeting, but a celebration.

So while I still prefer the traditional high five coupled with the butt slap, fist bumping as definitely taken its place among the celebratory hand gestures of this world.