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Forums > Other Toys > New Fans + Overzealous Poi Player = ???

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Kathain_Bowen


Kathain_Bowen

Good Ol' Yarn For Hair
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Total posts: 422
Posted:For those of you who can't follow the equation above, suffice it to say the answer is...

New Fans + Overzealous Poi Player = Disaster Waiting to Happen

Congrats if you actually got the answer right! ubbrollsmile

Okay, so, perhaps I should explain. I've been watching Memoirs of a Geisha, along with a ton of internet films, including the dreaded Locomia schtuff, and studying fans. Well, today, I was at the mall and found a semi-matching set of fans with slots large enough for finger spins. However, I'm a poi player by nature, so I enjoy things to be big, ballsy, or otherwise daring, and I immediately got into playing with finger spins and tosses.

.... now.... I'm down one fan (it ripped during a transition between a finger spin in front of me and over my head)

So, the real question is: should I just give up and invest in a set of fire fans to practice with?** Or should I continue to blow money every week on new fans.... building a strange assorted collection of broken pairs? Or is there another solution that I'm just too blind to see? Advice....





**And, before any of you jump on me, without fire, of course. I'm the safety queen, and I'm without a partner at the moment, so there is no fire for me at all except for the grill and the possible addition of a fire pit this spring for s'mores! ubbangel


"So long and thanks for all the fish."

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Brenn
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2004

Brenn

Will carpal your tunnel in a minute.
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 3286
Posted:Fire fans, assuming you get them from HoP, are MUCH heavier than traditional chinese fans. Expect a serious workout for a first time use, moreso when fire is involved.

I dance fairly aggressively with fans and after about 4 minutes I can get fairly fatigued. I do lots of finger spins but I seldom throw my fans as the spokes tend to bend fairly easily. But they are a JOY to play with, and my love for fans is on par with, if not supercedes, my love of staff.

My advice: Purchase another set of fans to practice with and work your way up to finger spins. Since fans are static than poi you can afford to be more dance-like and you will discover a different sense of personal space and awareness of self you won't otherwise get from staff or poi alone. If your love of fans still continues beyond your second set (or another week, whichever comes first), i'd consider getting fire fans smile

hug


ॐ

Owner of burningoftheclavey smile
Owned by Lost83spy

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Kathain_Bowen


Kathain_Bowen

Good Ol' Yarn For Hair
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Total posts: 422
Posted:Lol. I'm having a ton of fun with them. I expect to be thrown off of the beaches up and down the coast several times this summer to practice with metal fans with less risk of destroying them.

"So long and thanks for all the fish."

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Kathain_Bowen


Kathain_Bowen

Good Ol' Yarn For Hair
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Total posts: 422
Posted:UPDATE:

My good and all around awesome scrap yard friend is going to make me a mock set out of steel rod to knock and toss about at the beach. Hooray for friends who know how to metal work and only ask that I pay them in beer!


"So long and thanks for all the fish."

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polarity
SILVER Member since May 2005

polarity

veteran
Location: on the wrong planet, United Ki...

Total posts: 1228
Posted:You could try making your own out of something that doesn't rip, like tyvek.

You aren't thinking or really existing unless you're willing to risk even your own sanity in the judgment of your existence.

Green peppers, lime pickle and whole-grain mustard = best sandwich filling.

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Kathain_Bowen


Kathain_Bowen

Good Ol' Yarn For Hair
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Total posts: 422
Posted:.... yes.... I could....



But I'm looking for something to simulate the weight of actual fire fans..... and I could make simulately fire fans..... if people would only trust me with a welding kit..... but I don't see that happening in the near future.....



After US FIRST, I'm not surprised. redface



Although, I have been browsing fabric to replace the paper when it finally rips off. I'm looking at some tough materials in very simplistic and minimalist designs to make a slick impression.

EDITED_BY: Kathain_Bowen (1175782345)


"So long and thanks for all the fish."

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Kathain_Bowen


Kathain_Bowen

Good Ol' Yarn For Hair
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Total posts: 422
Posted:Update.... again...

I <3 <3 <3 the Wil type person right now. Wil was mighty bored last night when I dropped the steel and beer (er..... payment) off for him to make the mock fans. He then proceded to immediately crack open a KIllians and start hand hammering the rings. In three hours, he had made a pretty badass set of practice fans.... and spray painted them with engine paint because he felt he needed it.

Hooray!


"So long and thanks for all the fish."

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pricklyleaf
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

pricklyleaf

with added berries
Location: Manchester, England (UK)

Total posts: 1365
Posted:I've been really thinking about getting some fans recently.

Let me know how you get on with them!

I think I'll have to wait until I get a job and can afford some though


Live like there is no tomorrow,
dance like nobody is watching
and hula hoop like wiggling will save the world.

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

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bender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:Hi Kathain_Bowen,
I've done classes in japanese fan dancing, wushu & practiced poi for about 6 years... though there is definitely overlap, they are quire different skill sets.

the japanese fan dancing has an entirely regimented format, whereas poi is free-twirling. there is delicate footwork and intricate fan opening and folding movements in japanese fan dance - most of the the class stuggled with opening and closing fans with one hand... most fire fans cannot fold down in that manner.
Japanese fan dancing uses much smaller fans than the hop 5 finger variety.

Finally, like all artforms that get adapted to twirling, fan dancing needs to be translated to a twirling version. It's a waste of time to attempt to be completely true to traditional form as that same amount of time and effort is better spent adapting. keep an eye out for my COL entry smile


Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

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Kathain_Bowen


Kathain_Bowen

Good Ol' Yarn For Hair
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Total posts: 422
Posted:Yeah, I've been discovering a huge gap in my hand's ability to open fans with one hand. It's definitely far more tricky than it looks. =/

"So long and thanks for all the fish."

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bender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:are u using a weighted dance fan? strong hands, graceful flow and the right equipment won't hurt...



i've only ever seen one pair of folding fire fans that were sturdy enough for professional performance.


Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

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Kathain_Bowen


Kathain_Bowen

Good Ol' Yarn For Hair
Location: Atlanta, GA, USA

Total posts: 422
Posted: Written by: bender


are u using a weighted dance fan? strong hands, graceful flow and the right equipment won't hurt...

i've only ever seen one pair of folding fire fans that were sturdy enough for professional performance.



I'm known to toy around with paper fans that are not weighted when I get bored and am hanging around the house (*yeah, I know, probably not the best thing to play with, but, when bored and in a pinch, I'll turn anything into a toy. I once watched a good friend contact juggle a can of Alpo in a WalMart while we were waiting in a monstrous line)

Rigid steels when I'm actually working on stuff.

However, in either case, I'm discovering my fingers are less like fingers and are more like stupid sausages I glued on the ends of my hands. I'm just not very coordinated to say the least. redface


"So long and thanks for all the fish."

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Fox_with_Fans


newbie


Total posts: 4
Posted:Have you looked into buying a pair of steel tai chi fans, they will be weighty and looking at pictures of them and my own pair (folding fans) from www.firetoys.co.uk, the tai chi fans seem to only differ in that they have more steel fingers, 12-15 or so smaller ones apposed to five. The other good thing is these can be carried around with you without smelling of fuel.

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bender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:rigidity is important.
there are taichi fan forms that involve rotating spins. HOP fans do this beautifully as they are fixed.
having never personally used the firetoys fans, i wouldn't know how rigidly the folding fans would retain their shape when they are caught from a throw.
I wonder if they would arrange for a pair for me to test!


Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

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pricklyleaf
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

pricklyleaf

with added berries
Location: Manchester, England (UK)

Total posts: 1365
Posted:I bought some fire fans, and I'm finding them suprisingly difficult. There's a lot more to them than I first thought. I figured that my poi/hoop/hat/dance skills would transfer over to them easily, but, they really are suprisingly... different.

Not that thats a bad thing, I like a good challenge.

Its just a shame there is such a lack of resources on fire fans.


Live like there is no tomorrow,
dance like nobody is watching
and hula hoop like wiggling will save the world.

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

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ElectricBlue
GOLD Member since Feb 2002

ElectricBlue

Now with extra strawberries
Location: Canberra, Australia

Total posts: 810
Posted:There are some cool looking lessons over in the library. wink
It might be a good place to start.

http://www.homeofpoi.com/lessons_all/teach


I {Heart} hand me downs and spinning in the snow.<br /><br />

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Brenn
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2004

Brenn

Will carpal your tunnel in a minute.
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 3286
Posted: Written by: pricklyleaf


Its just a shame there is such a lack of resources on fire fans.



More lessons will be coming soon from yours truly smile It's amazing how hard it is to find time available for filming AND good weather to film in.

The biggest piece of advice i can give you is this: they are an extension of your own hands, the only independent movement being finger spins if you use them. It may not come to you at first as you might be finding now, but the more time you spend with them and the more you acclimatise with them, the more they will feel a part of you.

For now, do peruse the Fire Fans lessons in the library


Best of luck on your fans journey smile hug


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Owner of burningoftheclavey smile
Owned by Lost83spy

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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:There is alot I agree with here, and alot I disagree with.

First of all, I love my fans. They are pretty beat up because I practice with my fire fans, something I recommend for no one, btw. I have two sets. One of the original (ie: no longer available) HoP designs and a set a friend made for me.

The ones my friend made are insanely light and as such are top heavy, but it makes them good for spinning and throwing.

I have bent the hell out of the spokes on my HoP ones from tossing.

And here is where I agree and disagree with them being an extension of your arm. Yes, to a degree. The same as any other prop. However, if you only think that then you are limiting yourself to contact with it when throws and tosses are a lovely part of the art.

I also want to point out that while martial arts and tai chi and Japanese dancing are wonderful resources, do not forget about Victorian Fan language and some of the more subtle movements it incorporated. Also keep in mind Flamenco and spanish fan dancing, which is fluid and lovely and powerful and firey. There is also Rom fan dancing, which is more playful and flippant and lovely. smile


Pele
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

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xjere
BRONZE Member since Jul 2007

xjere

Member
Location: , USA

Total posts: 38
Posted: Written by: Pele

There is also Rom fan dancing, which is more playful and flippant and lovely.



Do you have any links on the Rom dancing? Being as my group has a gypsy motif, it would be great to see some of it.


Who wants to see a monkey on fire?

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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:I don't have any links for videos. A google might come up with something. I know that some of the Rom culture sites have info on their dances.
I was introduced to it years ago at a bellydance workshop..and kept doing the Rom workshops since.


Pele
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

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Brenn
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2004

Brenn

Will carpal your tunnel in a minute.
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 3286
Posted: Written by: Pele


There is alot I agree with here, and alot I disagree with.

First of all, I love my fans. They are pretty beat up because I practice with my fire fans, something I recommend for no one, btw. I have two sets. One of the original (ie: no longer available) HoP designs and a set a friend made for me.

The ones my friend made are insanely light and as such are top heavy, but it makes them good for spinning and throwing.

I have bent the hell out of the spokes on my HoP ones from tossing.

And here is where I agree and disagree with them being an extension of your arm. Yes, to a degree. The same as any other prop. However, if you only think that then you are limiting yourself to contact with it when throws and tosses are a lovely part of the art.

I also want to point out that while martial arts and tai chi and Japanese dancing are wonderful resources, do not forget about Victorian Fan language and some of the more subtle movements it incorporated. Also keep in mind Flamenco and spanish fan dancing, which is fluid and lovely and powerful and firey. There is also Rom fan dancing, which is more playful and flippant and lovely. smile



Ooh! What do the original HoP ones look like? Do you have pictures? smile

The 'extension of thy hands' that I mention extends only so far as performing moves that are attached. Throws and spins, of course, are outside of the hands, and something I use often when I perform. But for one who is starting out and isn't certain how to move with them or how to approach fans and fan dancing, keeping the 'extension of your own hands' in mind is a great starter. Once you gain confidence (and the novelty of your new toys wear off!) You can start incorporating more technical things such as spins and throws (and as Bender as shown: contact).

My knowledge of dancing only extends as far as the martial arts I have studied and salsa. You are right in that Victorian, Flamenco and Rom are other excellent inspirations that one can draw from.

Thanks for your extensive feedback Pele smile hug


&#2384;

Owner of burningoftheclavey smile
Owned by Lost83spy

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