Forums > Social Chat > Spanish poi spinning terms

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elatedpenguinBRONZE Member
2 posts
Location: USA


I'm currently volunteering in Peru for 9 months with an NGO ( anyway, I'll be doing a poi spinning class for the kids and am a beginner/intermediate spanish speaker, and don't know all the proper terms to use in spanish for the poi moves... if someone could help me I would greatly appreciate it!!! (I can look them up on google translate but the terms may be a bit differently interpretted; also no one i know here has experience with poi, so they're not familiar with the terms either...)

words like spinning, forward, backward, split time, stall, swinging, hip reels, alternating, extensions, weave, beat (as in 3bt weave), windmill, buzzsaw, corkscrew, thread the needle, wraps, snags

or any other key words you know of that I'm not remembering here..


EDITED_BY: elatedpenguin (1282581603)

ElectricBlueElectricBlueGOLD Member
Now with extra strawberries
810 posts
Location: Canberra, Australia

Hmm not sure if there is specific Spanish names for the moves unless you just do a direct word for word translation which might not make sense to the kids. You could do that using a English Spanish dictionary for most of them.

Is there any reason you can use the English words to name each move? unless they already know poi there won't be a problem with them learning the english names. Heck most of them sound pretty foreign to a non poi spinner any way.

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

animatEdanimatEdBRONZE Member
1 + 1 = 3
3,540 posts
Location: Bristol UK

A lot of the terminology crosses over directly, From what I remember of being in Spain. While the words are english, they have adopted them anyway. Like we have in English with so many words stolen from other languages. They just add a spanish accent wink

Some move names would be easier to translate for them to understand, but it's early, I'm hungover, and I don't have the mental capacity to look them up right now. some they are gonna have their own weird names for, because the english term doesn't translate well at all. Some names are gonna be completely translated. these will be things that describe split time, alternating etc.

Cariocas is the spanish word for poi, though... Electricblue has the right idea with getting a spanish/english dictionary. you could always make good use of the phrase 'En Ingles, eso se llaman .........'. I reckon that's much easier than trying to work out what they call them before hand.

Good luck!
EDITED_BY: Learning_To_Cook (1231584550)

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.

1 post

Hi friends!

I've done my register today and I'd like giving to you some information about Spanish-English terms. For all the poi's movements we have our own terms; perhaps are not the same in all the countries, at the end we're round 400 million people!
As far as I know and being involved in juggling from 1993, we use the Spanish words. Perhaps in touristic cities, Erasmus or resorts it could be different.

There are some that could fulfill your curiosity:
windmill: molino de viento
forward/ backward: por delante / por detrs
corkscrew: sacacorchos (for us it's a compound word too, haha)
thread the needle: enhebrar la aguja (remember "h" is silent)

Anyway, you are with children, they speak spanish, your level A1/A2: I think that "complete and clear spanish sentences" would be great for you! Because a loose word (English or Spanish) and some mimics, can't provide you a good comunication with them.

Example: "Now boys and girls, we have to move our pois forward and backward"
Ejemplo: "Ahora chicos y chicas, tenemos que mover nuestras cariocas por delante y por atrs"

There's a precise word that we say in English: Swinging. I think this term came out from 1930' music; we say Swing, like Blues or Rock'n roll (Swinging = "movimiento rtmico", "mover rtmicamente")

There's no English word for Flamenco: music played in South Spain, mainly by gypsies, with spanish guitar :-)

Dear Elatedpenguin,
If you like the idea of "short precise sentences" please, write to me and I would translate your instructions into Spanish. In fact, learming languages has brought to me a huge feeling of love and respect for them.
My daughter has been working with children as a volunteer in Chiclayo (Per)

Greetings from Zaragoza (Aragn-Spain)

elatedpenguinBRONZE Member
2 posts
Location: USA

Thanks for all your suggestions! They're very helpful smile

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