Forums > Beginner Poi Moves > Breathing Fire while Spining Fire?

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SILVER Member since Dec 2001

Location: , USA

Total posts: 1
Posted:Fellow Fire frends.. i have a show in a few days, and need some advice on a move i am concerding it is.. 1. have fire poi spining 2. a moth full of barcardy 151 proof alchol (fule) 3. at the start or a little ways in to the show while spining releace a spray of fule to be set a-blaze by the fire poi for a poof!! of fire...if any one has atempted this befor or know a few pointers for me to concerder i would be verrry thankfull for your help,..signeda nother fire fellowAl77

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Total posts: 195
Posted:since no one has responded... i'm no fire breather, or aspirator/spitter, or whatever you want to call the crazy people that put very flammable stuff in their mouth, but I do know that I would use anything but 151. do a search on the discussion board and you'll find a ton of information. Pele is especially knowedgable and very safety paranoid (which you can't be too much of). think about this.... if you burn yourself with fire, it's a body part, whereas if you accidentally suck some fuel down(not alcohol), or have a blowback with alcohol, you're in the hospital with little things that go beep with every pulse your heart beats.... i wouldn't try to learn in a few days, and I would be very careful about what I use as fuel.... (;P[This message has been edited by toneman (edited 27 December 2001).]



Location: Chicago, IL USA

Total posts: 19
Posted:I have done this move or a similar one several times. First off, I would recommend against using 151 rum. I shant go into all of the details (because it has been covered many times on this site. do a search for fire breathing fuels), but basically, it is dangerous because of the high risk of blow back and doesn't look all that impressive either because the flame is fairly clear. It also is quite hot. I think that Pele will have more to say on that subject, so I defer to her. As for the trick, do you plan on spinning the poi like a paddle boat wheel in front of your face? That's how I normally do this. If so, just make sure that you don't move your face towards the flame as you blow. That is asking for a hot smack in the face, but I've seen people who move in towards their torch when they blow. Basically, make sure you have done this trick many, many times without fire before doing it, and be careful.




Ninja Rockstar!
Location: Denver, Co. U.S.A.

Total posts: 1100
Posted:I'd have to back Stiltfire on this one.I thought it sounded like a good idea at first too, but then I researched it. While 151 is probobly the safest flammable liquid as far as ingestion is concerned, it has a very low flash point. This means it catches fire very easily. It also burns very hot, and you run a high risk of catching your mouth/face/hair on fire. If you've ever been on fire then you'll know that it's no fun at all. I don't personally breath fire but from watching people who do, I've noticed that they end up with a lot of fuel running down their face, with alchohol this will probobly turn your head into a giant wick. And that's no good. No good at all.------------------If you love something, set it on fire.

Jesus helps me trick people.



Location: Brunswick, Ohio

Total posts: 397
Posted:Also it really doesn't ignite I've tried it multiple times befor and never got a light off it. I'm sure though that if it did it would have been really hot.

We are all in the cosmic movie. That means the day you die you watch your whole life repeating for eternity. So you'd better have some good things happen in there and have a fitting climax. --Jim MorrisonIt's going to come from a direction you didn't predict at a moment of chaos which you didn't see coming. -- NYC



Location: UK

Total posts: 55
Posted:Well i have been practicing this move recently and i use Kerosene/Paraffin.Basically i've got fire poi which have chains and during or before i start my set i wrap the chains around my hands to halve the length of them.Then i procede to do i think it's called the reverse butterfly where the poi r doin the butterfly movement but instead of your hands being together u move your arms far apart so the poi are almost touching in the middle.Then with a mouth full of fuel i breathe diagonally up on the upstroke of the fire poi therefore igniting the fuel and a big ball of fire for everyones delight!!!hop that helps!! - in

Beamers Hurt but double Beamers r u insane???Well actually...yes i am!



Location: Sydney

Total posts: 57
Posted:Bacardi 151 aside...For the poi actions, I just do circles beside me and as I blow, move them so the poi cross over above & infront of me, and then just go back to circles at my side. Nothing fancy, but it works.Biggest problem is getting the timing right, it takes a bit of trial and error to work out when you have to start blowing. Suggest you firebreath as soon as possible to lighting the poi, since the flames are at their longest and you've got more room for error. Also holding fuel in your mouth for too long isn't healthy either.Might also help to start with just one poi.Other things to consider are being sure your hands don't get in the way, since getting them caught in the fireball isn't a nice thought.Also would suggest having your firebreathing really up to scratch, since you don't have a cloth to wipe up any fuel that might dribble down (although a shirt-sleeve can suffice).



Location: Portugal

Total posts: 12
Posted:To do firebreathing, the best fuel I've ever tried is firewater (you can buy it at a Circus Shop), but illuminant parafinne is also good and much cheaper. I have tried firebreathing while doing the chase but it's too hard and the flame can hardly be seen. Instead, try doing it with the wheel. It's easier and it looks much better.



Location: Gloucester

Total posts: 106
Posted:Not too sure about the fuel debate but personally I would NOT even consider alcohol.As for the moves though butterfly wraps sound cool.What about 'buzz-saw' type moves? or is that just being plain stupid?A friend of mine does a similar thing whilst juggling. He holds the fuel whilst juggling the torches and does a couple of tricks and then after a weee bit he sprays out whilst juggling - its wikid!! His whole chest, arms and torches just dissapear in a huge fireball!! NOT FOR THE FAINT HEARTED!!!Gruff


BRONZE Member since Dec 2000


the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:Since I have been deferred to I should probably answer aye?No alcohol what so ever, should ever be used. That being said Parafin/lamp oil is best. As others have said this has been discussed ****many**** times and should be searched for.As for breathing through spinning. Timing is important. Try aiming for the peak of a standard butterfly when they cross at the top for the best results, slow down your spin speed to do this if you need to. I have done this move with 12 inch chains and longer with no problems. Please pay close attention to may not feel it well because of the heat of the poi but if your breathe hits it wrong, the fire will shift back on you. Try it with unlit poi and water well before you attempt it alight. A good rule of thumb for performing is that you don't do anything you haven't done successfully for at least two weeks (preferrably more) prior to the show. You have to keep in mind that if you experiment in front of a crowd full of people, they are as liable to get hurt as you are. And you don't need to impress them with over the top moves. To them it is fire in circles and great balls of fire...impressive in their own right. Besides, do you really want to waste your insurance coverage on one show?Never rush anything with fire. It is too dangerous and not worth the risk.Regards------------------Pele Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir...

Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK



Location: Leeds, England

Total posts: 57
Posted:Hey, not sure if this is really of any help, but there's a video clip at (it's called nickwithfire.wmv) of a guy spinning and breathing fire at the same time. Worth a look just for the spinning, methinks. *Watches video again, shakes head and gets all sulky*
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Wish I was that good. Hope it's of some use! T-------------------Think I'm in love... probably just hungry...-

It was like Hell's kitchen on the day that all seven deadly sins came to dinner and the Devil was trying to do a complex Taiwanese banquet that he'd never attempted before...


SAPPHIRE Member since Nov 2001


Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada

Total posts: 272
Posted:That's me on the nickwithfire video, but I'm not breathing fire. I prayed a bit of fuel on the pavement and then lit it with my wicks. I've yet to try breathing fire.


"They're interdimensional fractal intelligences. That's why they wear funny shoes."


BRONZE Member since Jun 2002

confused and abused
Location: bristol, United Kingdom

Total posts: 363
Posted:Ah ha i've been waiting for this one. Putting the two together is AMAZING . As with all fire breathing do the usual routine. Wind, audience(if there is one)etc.

If you are happy to do this put the paraffin in your mouth and poi until you want to breathe. But i felt that the fire breathing would be a great finale, keeping paraffin in your mouth for such a long time is soo dodgy.

Two solutions

1. If you can do the one handed butterfly, VERY COMPETENTLY then you can ask someone to hand you the flammable liquid and cloth and you can put the poi back into both hands and BREATH

2. The other method i have tried an prefer much more is two small sports bottles (1 water and 1 paraffin) in your pockets with tubes under your clothing towards your face and within reach of your mouth you dont need to hold the paraffin in you mouth for that long and you can rinse your mouth out(i recommend a low turn when you spit the water out the audience can't see you that well)

Couple of other hints

You can wipe you mouth on your shoulder before and after the breathe in loads of tricks without looking wierd. I usually do it andturning from the three or five beat weave to the reverse weave facing the othe way. No~one really notices.

As for moves to do it with The 'buzzsaw' is my favourite just make sure you are very accurate i burnt my hands a fair bit on the first attempt

As Pele said a slow butterfly is very impressive

I have started playing with the five beat weave very slowly and doing two breathes, one on my left and one on my right straight after.

i also personally feel flash balls look prettier than great big plumes of fire. they seem to 'fit in better. But obviously go for a beast one if you are finishing your routine on one.

Just dont do any thing if the poi are coming towards your face, reverse weave etc unless you want the freddy kruger look
see you in hell


My cat's breath smells like catfood


GOLD Member since Oct 2002

Location: Massachusetts, US, USA

Total posts: 80
Posted:this is something that i do too, and its a really important point about not feeling the wind with the poi spinning around you. i've not done it in a formal performance setting yet, so i usually just stop spinning to check the wind. but that wouldn't look so great.
i use parafin also, and i always do it from a forwards buzzsaw (getting into the saw from a forwards weave). no timing issues. but short chains are a must. the only thing to be wary of (i'm not sure if it matters even), is that once you blow of the poi the chains will probably get parafin on them and be slippery. just something to keep in mind if you intend on wrapping them around your hands again to shorten them.


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