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Posted: Ok, I tried searching and I didn't really find the answer that I was looking for, so I'm sorry if this is a similar topic to another one...
Here is my problem:
When I try to do a simple wall plane isolation, I find that I am having trouble "over-spinning". I mean that it always goes into a full-length spin, but just spins faster and out of control. Does anyone know of any excercises that I can use to "power down" the strength of my spin so that I can get the proper isolation?
Again, I appologize if this is similar to another thread already started... If it is, maybe you could point me in the right direction?
P.S. Watched Meenik's Vid on the "Theory Behind Isolations" and it was great :), but I'm still having problems ...
Yeah, I may be NEW, but I'm not (black and) Blue!!!!!
DaGGOLD Member Golf buggie driving instructor 156 posts Location: Brisvegas, Australia
I found the tricky thing with learning isolations was that you can't control the Poi the whole way around. You only have the first quarter of the upswing (from the bottom to the 1st quarter up) to actually control the speed of the Poi. after that I kinda have to let the Poi float over and around.
its the old Newton Law. constant force = constant acceleration.
so if you keep trying to muscle the isolation round its always going to keep speeding up and 'over spin'
so my advice would be try and be gentle. give the Poi the least amount of force possible to get round
Originally Posted By: DaGits the old Newton Law. constant force = constant acceleration.
OMG!!! I ACED all of my science and math courses in high school. (not trying to toot my own horn or anything) I can't believe I forgot about that law. That sounds very logical and probably exactly what the problem is.... Thank you so much DaG
Yeah, I may be NEW, but I'm not (black and) Blue!!!!!
Can you do it in a buzzsaw plane, whitenyte? I've found its often easier for people to move through an isolation by just going through one beat of it in buzzsaw plane and then building up to continuously doing it... It'd help you get the feel for it..
Or alternatively just try slipping into and out of isolation... doing the top half or the bottom half or something like that.
What I think Richee is saying is valid, as is what DaG is saying... I'd like to know how you go with it... if I could see a video of what you were doing I could probably offer further tips.
Put a piece of neon tape in the middle of your tether, so you have a visual feedback on what it is you are isolating.
Grab both ends of your Poi and "pedal the bicycle" with your hands: forwards backwards, clock and anti-clock-wise in wall and horizontal plane... any which way you can get used to your hands "pedaling the bike". Try to get ti smooth and keep the tape isolated to one point in space. This will get your body used to how much you have to move to isolate.
Let go of the Poi head and try it horizontal 1st. With gravity acting along the axis of rotation, perpendicular to the spin plane, it's effect is constant. This makes it easier to get your hand to create that constant acceleration feel at first. Think of it like stirring a pot.
As for vertical, you are reving the Poi to counteract gravity during one quarter of the turn... for the rest just try to keep even tension. It will feel a little floaty as it goes over the top... eventually you will feel subtly different forces for each of the 4 quarters of your turn.
How the heck do you get in and out of isos?! Learn to make loops with your Poi... a bit like the loops you see in antispin or in-spin flowers, but you don't have to be making compound circles at all. Here is a quick example: Hold your hand outstretched to your side and spin inward in wall plane. as your Poi head swings down your center line, from head towards toe, move your hand in towards where the Poi head was. This can be a simple linear motion at 1st. your Poi orbit will contract into a loop.
If you start to enter a loop by moving towards where the Poi head was, you can then stabilize into an isolation. You contract from a static spin (diameter = 2 Poi lengths aka units) > to an isolation (diameter = to 1 unit, ie the Poi unit circle).
Also notice that when spinning static your hand is a point at the center of the circle. Once isolating your hand and Poi head orbit around that center tape marker in split-time same-direction.
More stuff I thought of after reading Jon's groovy post.
Can you do vertical stalls in the middle? If you can... try that... and with a stall you can either move in the opposite direction or in the same direction... (You can actually move in any direction you'd like on any axis.)
Try moving it in the same direction again, it might be easier not to even think about doing the stall, but instead just setting yourself up for it... Doing this will help get the Poi into a nice split time, which is hard to keep in an isolation.
If you've got a nice split time, then the bicycle action Jon mentioned will come into effect, if its not a split time it'll increase the number of your points of reference from 2 to 4 (since Poi heads and hands are no longer in the same place) and it'll feel much different and potentially confusing.
If you can do crossers, you may find that to get into a crosser a half turn of isolation in a wall plane is appropriate. This may well be the way you're getting into them. If it is, get a feel for that motion.
You could also attempt to do circles with your Poi, one above the other, then move through isolation in the middle and come out the other side.
This can be easier for some people getting into it, but also can be harder for others..
Play around with it... the best way to learn it is the way you learn best. Find which way suits you... theres a lot of great suggestions in here now, thanks for the question, Whitenyte.
When I was learning isolations, I found my center point on the string and colored it. I prefer to not use tape because it creates a block for things like hyperloops and other situations where your strings are interacting with each other. However, if you're specifically working on just isolations, tape works too. It's definitely important to make sure it's in the center. If it's off, it will either visually create another small circle, or if you managed to make that point stay still, the rest of the isolation will feel funny.
What I visualize is two overlapped circles. The Poi, and my hands. My hands are either following the path of the Poi, or the Poi is following my hand (as was stated earlier by Richee)
I started in buzzsaw plane, one hand at a time, and from there, I would physically move my body around the Poi. Meaning while I'm spinning an ongoing isolation, by moving where my body is, it's changing the plane in relation to my body. Easier than plane bending, and allowed me to practice an isolation in every vertically moving plane, on both the inside and outside of my arm. I didn't move on to the next plane until I was comfortable with the current one. After I had both hands down in every plane, I'd work on both of them together. Same time, various directions and split time various directions.
I still go through this exercise all the time, because my isolations can always be cleaner. It's difficult to get down, but it's one of those techniques that really does just come with practice. After a while, muscle memory kicks in and it all flows with ease. The difficult part is teaching your muscles to know when make minor adjustments when your isolation is off.
Best way I've found so far, is learn to stall the Poi. then, it's pretty similar to learning to stall the Poi without stopping...
Ie, to stall a Poi, you need to take the weight off it as you follow the head with your hand and come to a stop. instead of stalling the Poi, try and rotate again.
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.
Originally Posted By: Learning_To_Cook Best way I've found so far, is learn to stall the Poi. then, it's pretty similar to learning to stall the Poi without stopping...
Hence my advice about loops :
Originally Posted By: Alien Jon How the heck do you get in and out of isos?! Learn to make loops with your Poi... a bit like the loops you see in antispin or in-spin flowers, but you don't have to be making compound circles at all.
Here is a quick example: Hold your hand outstretched to your side and spin inward in wall plane. as your Poi head swings down your center line, from head towards toe, move your hand in towards where the Poi head was. This can be a simple linear motion at 1st. your Poi orbit will contract into a loop.
After all, whether you get a loop or actually hit a stall point (0-point, 0 momentum) is simply a matter of timing and proportion: how much your hand moves and how fast in relation to the Poi head.
For example, if you move your hand towards the Poi head and keep going past where it was until you have moved 2 unit Poi lengths at the right time you will have stalled the Poi head (hit a 0-point) and exited the stall going in the same direction. In other words linear isolation of the Poi head.
If instead you move your hand 1 unit towards the Poi head in the right timing, ending where the Poi head was when you started, you create a loop. The Poi head ends up swinging through the point where your hand started and exits the loop (unless you start moving your hand in a unit circle, in which case you get into an isolation).
There is a moment at which your hand is half way from start to finnish, and the Poi head is pointing away from your hand at the "point" of the loop (the "loopiest" position it gets to). This is about where you start to move your hand in a unit circle in order to isolate.
Another fun one is to change from antispin, in-spin linear moves, pretty much any pattern that has a loop by going into isolation during a loop. After at least one iso, you can then go back into making loops. For instance, you could be antispining hit a moment of isolation, but come out moving your hands the other way into an in-spin flower.
I'd say that they aren't physically exerting, as learning them slow and relaxed can really help... but Keeping just enough even tension during fast isos is great practice too!
What I think Durbs meant was that you end up moving your arms and torso quite a bit more than a static spin, since your hands have to orbit at the same radius as the Poi head, compared to your hands staying relatively still in a static spin. This is why I suggested holding each end of your Poi and "pedaling the bike". So you can get used to just how much more your arms and torso move compared to normal static spins.
I realize my previous posts might seem like over-thinking it, but my aim is to present building blocks that people can focus on as bite-sized chunks of practice if they need to, in order to help ease in the muscle memory for isolations, and connect the dots to combining them with other moves.
If you spend time learning a move as a very specific trick, then you develop neural mapping designated to just that trick... and you have to go back and keep refreshing it to keep the specific trick clean. If you develop neural mapping for building blocks that are the stuff that many tricks have in common, and then build the neural infrastructure to unify those into an over all form, then you will spend time up keeping the form holistically, and less time is need on top of that to polish certain tricks.
If you are going to explore a large breadth of Poi territory, you'd do well to optimize the Poi patterning stored in the parts of your brain that essentially cache certain complex movements. That is a big part of the mechanisms of "muscle memory", which is kind of a misnomer, even though I use the term myself. I highly suggest reading a book called: "the body has a mind of its own"
I used to have to spend more time keeping my isos up to snuff, but now that I have unified them with compression and loops, which unifies them with cateyes, in-spin, antispin, linear isos and stalls, pendulums, etc... I just upkeep it all in about the same time I used to have to put to just isos.
Of course I like to jam, find new patterns and explore a wide range of things. My level of refinement wouldn't stand up (hypothetically) to say Victor Keys, if he developed a Poi act. His dance, body movement, technique and presentation would be world class... but he'd likely do that ONE routine... and that one routine would take up major neural real-estate. But how well would he readily learn new concepts and integrate them to the level of wide open improvisation?
So I think your approach depends on whether you want a narrowly focused, laser honed repertoire, or a wide open massively parallel one... which with some work on optimization, can still be very honed.
Jon, i agree with you, but this is starting to get away from isolations and into pedagogy.
To break it down to its most basic concept... everyone learns differently. Finding your own way of learning is up to you. If Jons ramblings make the most sense, go for it, though for me his ramblings wouldn't be introduced til just AFTER the basic movement is mastered, using it to link into more complex relationships between movements.
There is not a single person in here I disagree with, to make that perfectly clear.
astonSILVER Member Unofficial Chairperson of Squirrel Defense League 4,061 posts Location: South Africa
Jon: Nice writingses. I always like your approach.
I should really work on getting these things down though....
And with what simta seems to imply: if I do not isolate for a while, I need to relearn it.
'We're all mad here. I'm mad, you're mad." [said the Cat.] "How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice. "You must be," said the Cat, "Or you wouldn't have come here." - Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures In Wonderland
Posted: Different Types Of Poi are helpful for different families of moves. I've found the socks to be good for isolation. the soft stretchyness emphasizes that moment of tug the Alien mentioned in the vertical plane when the Poi are spinning against gravity after the downbeat.
If you want to go really slowly try practicing isolationswith clubs. the hands will act a little differently but arms do the same thing as with Poi.