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Forums > Social Discussion > Getting back on the fire horse

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Talon_tigris
GOLD Member since Aug 2007

Talon_tigris

Member
Location: Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

Total posts: 10
Posted:I'm having a bit of a crisis at the moment, and need a bit of support to just get me back in the swing of things, so to speak.

A few weeks ago I got my first fire burn. I've been spinning for almost a year, started fire about six months ago. I knew it would be an eventuality. And while it's a minor burn, and it did get immediate first aid, etc, etc. I'm still a little shaken from it, and haven't done any subsequent burns since, this was 3 weeks ago now.

My problem is thus, I'm going to be performing fire next weekend infront of a large audience. And I know even when I spin dry, I've got a habit of screwing up even more when there's other people watching. I plan on practicing dry with my fire set to just get the feel of things again, but again, I'm scared.

Does anyone have any advice for good spinning gear in a hot and humid climate? Should I just get a long sleeved shirt and soak it in ice water before the performance? Because it's sounding like a mighty good safety plan right about now. And how do I deal with getting back on the fire horse? I respect the flame. But I also am well aware of what it can do. Help? confused


People alter their lives by altering their attitudes

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ElectricBlue
SILVER Member since Feb 2002

ElectricBlue

Now with extra strawberries
Location: Canberra

Total posts: 810
Posted:Hmm it is a hard situation.

How did you burn you self?
Did you hit yourself? was it from the flame or the hot metal on the prop?

These are good questions to ask so that you can work out why it happened and try and reduce the risk in the future.

As far as what to wear in warm climates. I usually go by the rule that less is more. I have found that when spinning with bulky clothes there is more risk of getting tangled and caught up. I would just go with a cotton singlet and some denim or thick cotton shorts.

Also it is best to avoid soaking your clothes in water. If you are wearing cotton and you get hit with a prop you will usually have plenty of time to move the prop before it causes any damage. But if your clothes a wet it only takes seconds for the flame to turn the water to steam which really hurts.

Lastly if you are not comfortable performing with fire in time it is really not worth the risk. Have you considered using some glow poi or some other alternative?


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

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Talon_tigris
GOLD Member since Aug 2007

Talon_tigris

Member
Location: Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

Total posts: 10
Posted:I had an accidental tangle with the poi, which ended up with a very minor first degree burn from the wick and a teeny bit from the chain. I found the burn to be more fascinating than anything, and it happened because I switched moves without proper mental preparation first.

I'm thinking about doing a glow show if I can't gear myself up enough for fire. I know I've got a much better tricks base at this point with my glow poi, and what I can do to make things a bit better is just replace my batteries so I can at least try to glow as brightly as the fire performers. I'm going to talk with the person leading our conclave about the situation as well, I'm sure he'll understand. I'm also going to do a few fire spins at practice the night before. I'm sure the intoxication of the flame will help me get back into the swing of things.

Thanks for the advice for water. I forgot about the whole water into steam thing. What do you think of thick cotton arm socks as a guard? These would be a previously unused prop, so they wouldn't have any kerosene soaked in them from previous burns, thereby minimizing their flammability. I just want a few props that would help my feeling of safety during performance. I've done quite a few burns now, but I'm always looking for ways to improve things. I know better not to try shaky moves with my wicks alight. So at least I've got that covered. lol


People alter their lives by altering their attitudes

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Pink...?
BRONZE Member since Apr 2002

Pink...?

Mistress of Pink...Multicoloured
Location: Over There

Total posts: 6140
Posted:Firstly, I agree with what Electric Blue said - if you don't feel safe with fire, don't do it with fire.

Also, when performing with fire (or any performing for that matter) only do tricks you're 100% on. If you have a move you're 75% on and put it in your routine (a big ending trick or seomthing) if you don't feel confident about it, don't do it. The audiance have no idea what was planned in your routine.

Do a dry run before the show, that way you can have a feel for it whilst having nerves (pre-show nerves usually worse then when you're on stage... if you can do it fine then, you can do it fine on stage I've found!!)

Socks as arm guards usually work quite well, If it will make you more confident then definately.

Also, make sure you have all the usual safety things nearby - someone manning a fire blanket being the most important. Also someone who knows your routine is helpful as then, if you tangle somewhere you're not supposed to they'll know. If it's a layman they might not realise the difference!!.

Good luck - let us know how it goes. hug2


Never pick up a duck in a dungeon...

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animatEd
BRONZE Member since Aug 2004

animatEd

1 + 1 = 3
Location: Bristol UK

Total posts: 3540
Posted:Cotton is the key.

Natural fibres should protect you enough. I just wear jeans, and a long sleeved top, and I'm fine. I don't like doing wraps on bare skin.

Remain calm, and you'll react to things better. when you tangle, don't think to yourself; oh [censored], gotta get it away from me quick, instead, just pull your hands apart, and if they stay tangled, they'll be away from you and you'll have space to work out how to untangle them. if they don't stay tangled, carry on Spinning biggrin

I'm not a big fan of fire either. it restricts me somewhat.


Empty your mind. Be formless, Shapeless, like Water.
Put Water into a cup, it becomes the cup, put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, put water into a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Water can flow, or it can Crash.
Be Water My Friend.

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newgabe
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

newgabe

what goes around comes around. unless you're into stalls.
Location: Bali

Total posts: 4030
Posted:A damp towel is the best thing you can have as a 'fire blanket'. It will put your toys out quicker than anything else, as it cuts the air supply really well. Don't be tempted to drink alcohol or get stoned to overcome nerves.



If you do glowies when other people are doing fire, be prepared that the audience will ALWAYS be attracted/ impressed with the fire, even if it's really basic.....and probably not even recognise a 'better' set with glowtoys! Shame but true! Definitely use glowies if you feel more comfy with them, but don't expect extra yays from audience because you did better tricks... wink



Also, Is it an audience who are expecting a 'show' from you.. Then be SHOWY. Performanance is not necessarily about tricks... its about giving people something to laugh and smile about... they want to enjoy themselves, not just admire the performers. So engage, smile, make people feel good and you will have a good time too.... rather than be too worried about tricksy perfection. That will come in time ....then you will learn about choreo and snchro and clean up all the tiny sloppy bits and THEN you will really start being a fire performer. So relax, you're a long way away from the full deal.. just enjoy being and showing where you are now.



Or are you just a bit of decoration at a festival or similar? IN which case...just enjoy being and showing where you are now!



Also, I would say, do as much play as you can with your fire this week before you perform. The only way back on the horse is.... back on the horse!!!


.....Can't juggle balls but I sure as hell can juggle details....

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Posted:Like everyone said if you don't think you up to fire then don't do it. I haven't had any burns but I had a close encounter tonight. I had a few friends over and none of them have seen me do a fire spin so I was going to do a quick simple one. I ended up going for 10 minutes straight. ^_^ No idea how my wicks held up to that because there denim . But after a minute I started doing a bunch of leg wraps and was doing great. Not thinking im wearing short sleeve I went to do an arm wrap and tangled up. I didn't get burned at all but its just kinda shocked me. I just picked it back up and kept going for another few minutes. You really just need to go try a simple spin without anything to advanced just to get the feel again and then move on from there.

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Mother_Natures_Son
SILVER Member since Aug 2007

Mother_Natures_Son

Rampant whirler.
Location: Geelong, Victoria, Australia!

Total posts: 2418
Posted:I haven't had time to carefully read through... but if its not mentioned, practice stuffing up safely. If you're doing a movement and it does go awry, being able to get the hot ends away from your body quickly will for sure help.

Also, perhaps consider the flash point of your fuel? If you're using lamp oil or something like that its nice and easy for the fuel to transfer to your skin/clothing and then ignite, if you're using shellsol or something along those lines then a burn from this is less likely... you'd be getting burned by the hot metal then, if anything and the kevlar protectory thingamies Nick was toting around would help you with that.


hug

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newgabe
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

newgabe

what goes around comes around. unless you're into stalls.
Location: Bali

Total posts: 4030
Posted: Written by :deadkenndys1105


No idea how my wicks held up to that because there denim



DENIM!!!!
Please please get some proper wick if you are going to spin. Fabric that burns through will end up sending flaming disintegrated bits flying around and that is BAD!!

When I first started spinning I used a staff with fabric wicks and chicken wire or some crazy stuff.... but that was something like 1995!!!! and kevlar was hardly known....and it was another universe far far away, where there were no internet sites to buy things cheaply and easily... and we didn;t know how to get things.

But now ts so easy to get proper gear, there are great solidly ready made and SAFE poi and staffs available eg on this site... or easily available kevlar wick if you want to make your own... but please, NOT flammable fabric!!!

Enjoy!


.....Can't juggle balls but I sure as hell can juggle details....

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Posted: Written by :newgabe


 Written by :deadkenndys1105


No idea how my wicks held up to that because there denim



DENIM!!!!
Please please get some proper wick if you are going to spin. Fabric that burns through will end up sending flaming disintegrated bits flying around and that is BAD!!

When I first started spinning I used a staff with fabric wicks and chicken wire or some crazy stuff.... but that was something like 1995!!!! and kevlar was hardly known....and it was another universe far far away, where there were no internet sites to buy things cheaply and easily... and we didn;t know how to get things.

But now ts so easy to get proper gear, there are great solidly ready made and SAFE poi and staffs available eg on this site... or easily available kevlar wick if you want to make your own... but please, NOT flammable fabric!!!

Enjoy!



I know I need to get better wicks. I plan on getting some soon to it just I haven't. I know very poor excuse but its the truth. I should be ordering some kevlar some time this week.


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Pyrolific
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

Returning to a unique state of Equilibrium
Location: Adelaide, South Australia

Total posts: 3289
Posted:denim in wire cages is very oldskool. Technology has moved on. Buy some kevlar heads - you wont regret it.

--
Help! My personality got stuck in this signature machine and I cant get it out!

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Nee
BRONZE Member since Jul 2008

newbie


Total posts: 15
Posted:I haven't really started poi but my partner used to work in a foundary, which meant he was surrounded by smouldering, red-hot metal constantly. Everyone who worked there was required to wear long sleves, long pants that are 100% cotton because cotton doesn't burn very much (as I think someone else said). They also had to wear flame-retardant work pants, which are a lot like denim. Basically the weave is so thick, there's no air so the fire can't start. So you could go to a workwear shop and buy some flame-retardant clothes to wear (at least until you get your confidence back).

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