is also a name for one of the two most basic and
valuable tricks possible using double fire poi
, the other being
the the butterfly
. Visually, it is a snakelike pattern, resembling an infinity sign.
It is one of the most versatile tricks, as it
can be shifted into any spatial plane around the body. Planar variations
include behind the back
between the legs
behind the head
, and more complicated
variations on the pattern itself include the 5-beat weave
Now, while most everyone can more or less intuitively pick up a
set of poi and swing them in parallel circles, the weave seems to
make doctors and seven-year-olds, alike, antsy and nervous.
For real quick reference here, poi are weights on the end of
chains. Fire poi is when those weights are ON FIRE.
So one poi(or fire chain) is going to consist of three parts:
Finger-loop(usually consisting of nylon webbing or leather, can
be single loop or double), chain(anywhere from nylon or cotton cord,
to stainless steel wire to honest to goodness heavy chain) and
weight(could be a bean-bag, tennis ball, or kevlar wicking).
If this sounds good, you want to check out poi, fire spinning
and fire spinning chains.
If you want to learn poi, my strong suggestion is that you grab a
pair of long tubesocks, and stick tennis balls in the toes. Grab the
ends of the socks. You are now holding an excellent set of
practice poi. Because you're going to be hitting yourself a LOT.
If you are less of a masochist, another sock stuck in each toe in place
of the tennis ball works as well. Or, you know, a tiny stuffed animal,
ball of yarn, and so on-be innovative here. Just try to avoid soup cans.
My first lesson in poi, and the way I learned the weave are as follows.
Pick up your set of poi and attach them to your hands comfortably.
If you ignored my suggestion above and ran out to buy a nice shiny
expensive set of ribbon or windsock poi, an easy method to hold them is to take
one finger loop between index and middle fingers, with the poi hanging,
and palms facing the sky (or ceiling if you don't keep a lot of
breakable possesions ). Take the loop sticking up and fold it over
the ends of your fingers. This should leave you with a snug fit that
will not constrict so much as to deprive you of sensation in your
fingertips. The poi should now always stay on the same side of your
hand as your knuckles.
From here you want to try to cross the poi. If you've ever played double dutch
jumprope, you've done this. If not, the idea is to wait for the poi to reach
the high point of their circles, and as they begin to come down in front of
you, cross your arms. Try to sustain the circles on either side of you while your
arms are crossed. When you manage this, try to uncross them.
Begin swinging the poi in circles from back to front over your shoulder
(the forward direction). Try to keep the poi going at the same speed and
in parallel circles all the time. You want to keep the circles perpendicular
to the ground, and equidistant.
Next, try to syncopate the rhythm of the poi, so that
although they are still spinning at the same speed, one weight is at the
top of its circle at the same time as the other is at the bottom.
Now, remember a couple minutes ago, I asked you to cross your arms.
This time you are going to cross them again, but this time you need to stagger
each arm. So pick an arm, doesn't matter which, for reference, I'm picking "right".
When the poi attached to your right arm reaches its peak, move your arm to the left side.
As it is moving over, the left poi should be hitting its peak, and you are going to pass your
left arm to the right side.
Good job. Now for the hard part.
Drop the poi for a moment. Now pretend you're an AWESOME DRUMMER!!!!!
Find a table, and put your hands on it, shoulder-width apart. Imagine that there are
two circles on the table, one under each hand. (If you have a set of bongos, even better.)
Cross your hands, right over left. Hit the left bongo with your right hand, then with your left hand,
And bring your left hand out of the way to the left so you can hit the left bongo with your right hand one more time.
Now bring your left hand over to cross your right hand. Now hit the right bongo with your left hand (it should be on top).
Then hit it with your right hand, then your left again, and bring your right hand over to cross.
You've just done one cycle of the weave (pre-poi of course). Practice this pattern a bit, until you feel really
comfortable, then pick up your poi and give it a shot. After this point, it's practice practice practice