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Traci Young-Byron outrages Step it Up fans by fat-shaming Deshauan

Step it Up‘s Traci Young-Byron has been commended not only for her ability to put together a killer routine, but also her dancer’s body. Fans of Bring It will recall seeing that body on full display in a two-piece costume during a creative dance performed by the Young Contemporary Dance Theatre SupaStarz. Young-Byron may have an athletic build, but several shapes and sizes are represented in the YCDT… and that’s not a bad thing.

Like many dance teachers, Young-Byron believes that it is very important for dancers to be in excellent physical condition. But a few Step it Up fans worry that she may have gone a bit too far when critiquing Deshauan, who is not exactly the skinniest dancer on the team.

Traci Step it Up
Image: Lifetime

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Deshauan may be a bit heavier than the other girls, but there is a lot more to her than her weight. She has a stellar grade point average, and she’s committed to being every bit as exceptional in the dance studio as she is in the classroom. She knows that she weighs more than many of the other YCDT gals, but she doesn’t think that her body type holds her back as a dancer. Young-Byron, on the other hand, seems to disagree. In one rather controversial scene, she accused Deshauan of looking winded and later told the dancer to take a moment to breathe.

Deshauan Step it Up
Image: Lifetime

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A few Twitter users admitted that they agreed with Deshauan’s message about her body. According to these viewers, there is no reason why the dancer’s weight should be a problem.

Others, however, said that Young-Byron made a good point, as it is essential for dancers to be in amazing shape.

Still others insisted that, if they were YCDT members, they would have abs every bit as flat as those of the super-athletic Young-Byron.

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Although it’s easy to see why viewers are worried about Young-Byron’s treatment of Deshauan, the dance teacher was actually fairly tempered in her criticism. Her comments were especially innocuous when compared to those made by Abby Lee Miller, who has been called out for body-shaming multiple dancers, including, most notably, Ava Cota. Instead of focusing specifically on Deshauan’s weight or the shape of her body, Young-Byron mentioned the dancer’s struggle to keep up — a struggle that could easily be shared by thinner dancers. What’s more, the teacher actually took the time to connect with Deshauan after practice. Clearly, she wants the best for this talented dancer, regardless of her weight.

Do you think Traci Young-Byron’s comment about Deshauan was a form of fat-shaming? Or are concerned viewers getting worked up over nothing? Comment and share your opinion below.

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