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NBC Insider America's Got Talent

The Story Behind How Terry Crews Started Pec-Popping Is Hilarious

The America's Got Talent host started when he was just 12 years old.

By Jackie Manno
Terry Crews Shares The Secret Behind His Iconic Pec Dance

On The Kelly Clarkson Show's January 9 episode, step-in Host Howie Mandel brought on a very special guest for an interview: His then-America’s Got Talent: All-Stars co-worker Terry Crews. (Mandel is a Judge on the talent competition show, while Crews is the Host.)

How to Watch

Watch the Season 19 premiere of America’s Got Talent Tuesday, May 28 at 8/7c on NBC and next day on Peacock

As soon as Crews came on stage, he began his signature pec-popping routine.

“That never gets old, buddy,” Mandel said with a laugh. “Don’t you think that’s amazing? You got talent. You always do the flexing. And I noticed at work, at AGT, you taught Simon [Cowell] how to do it, you taught Heidi [Klum] how to do it.”

“Yes, Heidi is really good!” Crews exclaimed.

“She tells me she can do it. I’m not allowed to see whether she can. Her eyes are here. I’ve never seen it,” Mandel said cheekily.  “How did you teach them, and why did you teach them?”

“Because it's such an attention-getter, and you gotta understand: The older I get, the better it's gonna be because they get saggy, and then they just start to fly up a little bit more,” Crews explained.

Terry Crews' secret to Pec-Popping

To pop your pecs, Crews revealed, “All you have to do–and this is the technique, and anybody in the world can do it. Put your hands together, and just squeeze! Squeeze! Squeeze your hands together!And you can feel it moving!”

“See? Now everybody’s got talent,” Mandel chimed in.

“The way I started and learned how to do that was because I was really lonely and I had–I’m not kidding, I was, like, 12 years old. There were no dates; I was sitting at home alone. I’m looking in the mirror, and I was like, ‘Oh! Oh wow!’” said Crews. “Twelve-year-old boys come up with some really ridiculous things."

"When your only friends are your two nipples, that is really lonely,” Mandel joked, causing Crews and the crowd to erupt in laughter.

Crews and Mandel have since returned to their roles in a new season of America's Got Talent, while Crews served as a guest judge on the premiere of Hot Wheels™: Ultimate Challenge.