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Carpal \'Tunnel
15,414 posts
Location: United Kingdom

RIght, went out to see a muscial last night ( was the maddness one- our house), and lo and behold!

there were fire spinners. well...i would tend to the side of fire clubs, but you catch me drift.

this is the second musical in succession that there has been Poi at. the last was chitty chitty bang bang.

are you all not worried that Poi will start getting everywhere, lots of trend following kids will pick it up with out realising what it is about, the craze will die out, then only the 'hardcore collective' (GRRRRR) will be left whcih everyone will say thats realy old. then we will stop spinning becxause the effect on people will not be the same, (they will be all like...uh huh...and..ive done that with my eyes closed, on one leg and with my hands behind my back)

thats what im worried about.

PsyriSILVER Member
1,576 posts
Location: Berkshire, UK

lol I doubt... I get annoyed when certain guys I know say it looks gay... so not all people then.
It sounds like skateboarding... trends... blaa blaa blaa...

DurbsBRONZE Member
Classically British
5,688 posts
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England

UCOF - You should've been at Glastonbury!
It was almost impossible to look in any direction without seeing at least 5 people doing Poi, crazy.

I don't think people will get bored of it, looking at the speed of progression with the advanced moves there will always be some really advanced spinners, and then people who pick it up cos it looks cool then stop when they get bored. Same as any "fad", skateboarding for example, lots of people do it, most of them badly, but the good guys are still blowing peoples socks off.

I just hope people don't all start learning Contact Juggling

Burner of Toast
Spinner of poi
Slacker of enormous magnitude

279 posts
Location: Bath, UK

Madness fair enough, no idea what Poi has to do with chitty chitty bang bang.

Glastonbury there was someone doing Poi everywhere you looked.

Some people will give it up after a week, some will discover the zen of Poi and Poi every day for the rest of their lives.

In the meantime many will spend money on Poi, which means cheaper, better Poi for the rest of us, no?

Magnus... pay it forward

KatBRONZE Member
2,211 posts
Location: London, Wales (UK)

I play for fun, not for other people so if the 'craze' dies then so be it.

Uncool is cool ya know!

Come faeries, take me out of this dull world, for I would ride with you upon the wind and dance upon the mountains like a flame.

- W B Yeats

sunbeamSILVER Member
old hand
1,032 posts
Location: Madrid, United Kingdom

right on Kat

that's what I was going to say

"I don't take drugs. I am drugs" - Salvador Dali


2,419 posts
Location: la-la land

not sure about that Magnus.. most of the time when things are mass produced the quality goes downhill.. I've seen some prety sh*tty Poi about recently - a friend bought a new pair a while ago.. the strings have bith spapped of where they join the Poi.. impossible to fix.. may as well go buy another.. (manufactures rubs hands with glee)

I honour you as an aspect of myself..

You are never to old to storm a bouncey castle..

Bender_the_OffenderGOLD Member
still can't believe it's not butter
6,979 posts
Location: Melbourne, Australia

I'm just glad that with Poi, this love affair doesn't involve cousins.

Laugh Often, Smile Much, Post lolcats Always

Narr(*) (*) .. for the gnor ;)
2,568 posts
Location: sitting on the step

i was watching telly the other day and an ad came on (surprise surprise!)it was for some late 70's early 80's soul crooner and in the mist of some very poor dance routine there was a girl doing poi!for some reason it annoyed me slightly, apart from looking very out of place!
since i've been studying fashion i've noticed how often some trend predictors pick up on some aspects of different sub cultural groups,and make it trendy for a season then poof its gone again.(its happend with tattoos piercings punk surfing skateboarding you name it!)what bothers me most about this is that they fail to realise its part and parcel of a lifestyle, someones identity and i personally don't think that is something that should be abused in that way.but then the lil guy on my shoulder laughs and says that they are the ones that are truly missing out

she who sees from up high smiles

Patrick badger king: *they better hope there's never a jihad on stupidity*

Rainbow Jemmember
5 posts
Location: Manchester

Does it really matter if it gets too popular?!! Things always go round in trends - its an unfortunate, but inevitable fact of life.

As Durbs says there will always be spinners who are amazing and leave you in a state of awe!! Those are the people who earn the respect of other spinners. Those that pick it up for short periods of time then lose interest will be left miles behind, if you want to be good you have got to be dedicated.

Though one of my pet hates is people asking to borrow your Poi in crowded environments, assuring you they know exactly what their doing, spinning them full length, uncontrolled and like a maniac and twating everyone around them. It gives us a bad name!! GRRRRR

1,591 posts
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada.

So what? Im sick of all this anti-trend trendies who go around crusadeing against trends. Trends are just a element of our society. If you are really so big into Poi it shouldn't matter how many people do it because you are doing your own thing with your own friends for your own enjoyment.

Id like to see Poi become massivly trendy (apparentli it's starting to happen on the west coast of canada and US and in england and oz) because whenever something such as yoyo, skateboarding, Poi etc.. become trendy you always get like 30K people who do it for a little bit just for the look and immediate satification then quit, and a handfull of people stick with it and become really good, developing new moves and contributing to the community. Isn't that what we want? I thought that was the idea of HoP, and all the Poi gatherings people have.

Really what I think you are afraid of is when Poi gets massivly popular you will no longer stand out and get the attention you crave for doing it. Attention is a nice thing, but you will get it back when the Poi trend washes over (I think it may be at it's peak now)

285 posts
Location: down the bottom of the garden,england

yeah its definately getting big in england, i used to just meet other poi-ers at the odd rave in the forests now you get groups of 20 practising at lunch time in school, its a mad mad world

i'll draw you a picture ill draw it with a twist ill draw it with a razorblade ill draw it on my wrist and if i do it right a red fountain will appear washing away my sorrow washing away my fear

RandyBRONZE Member
42 posts
Location: Long Beach, CA, USA

ok, being a newbie, I'm probably not the best person to talk on this.. but hasn't Poi been around for like hundreds (if not thousands) of years? That would make it a hell of a trend.

I mean, atleast it's not like the Koosh ball.. now THAT was a silly trend.

CharlesBRONZE Member
Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
3,989 posts
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

You guys are acting as if this trend hasn't already happened several times before...

It's like yoyo''s all happened before

Goes off singing an old NZ Split Endz song

"History never repeats, history never repeats, I tell myself, before i go to sleep..."

dum de dum dum dee dumm

HoP Posting Guidelines
* Is it the Truth?
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Paddyback from the dead...sort of
884 posts
Location: 4341'N 7938'W

Firedancing in the news
The Poi Fad.
Poi: a passing trend? Article - Douse It: The exhausted art of fire dancing others out there I couldn't find.

The conclusion of all these discussions: just do what you enjoy.

11 posts
Location: uk

What does it matter if the art of Poi becomes trendy and then like so many trends before and then becomes less popular? Surely that doesn't matter to those of us who get so much pleasure out of doing some thing so simple.


14 posts
Location: stersund, Sweden and London, UK

Que pasa nios?

Whats with the elitist thinking? the Poi community is only open to X number of members? You must pass a certain test to be counted as a "real" poier?

Im new in Poi and loving it, maybe I would never have found it if it wasnt because of this new "trend". Im a beginner, Im not very good at all, but practising. Now does this make me less worth than you guys whove been doing it for years?

This makes me sad. I feel left out and lonely and not loved. I will cry myself to sleep.

Mind that grammar!!!

1,591 posts
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada.

Now look at what we have gone and done.

DioHoP Mechanical Engineer
729 posts
Location: OK, USA

One of my buddies way back got into a discussion with me on this exact same topic. And really eased my nerves as to what it could lead to.

I am in a position where Fire Dancing is a really good source of money for myself, so why shouldn't I be concerned with whether or not it's going to get me a performance in the future? We DO stand to lose some things if it goes out of style, perhaps not everyone who's picked up a set of Poi, but there are those of us who run that risk every time we take on new students. But that's what happens when I've put my lot into this - I risk the loss. But I'm not too worried, really.

Essentially, we don't have to worry about Poi being a "passing trend" or any other such nonsense because it takes virtues that trend-followers do not typically possess - creativity and patience. For the same reason martial arts has never been something really marketable, trend-followers want to be cool "right now." They don't want to think for themselves because they risk the possibility of their action being seen as passe or dull. They don't want to put in the hours of practice to get good at it, or to develop their own style. Acrobats, Gymnasts, Comedians... all manner of performers are seen by massive audiences, but they never seem to have their interests stripped from them, distilled out to the masses, and devalued. Why should Poi be any different?

Take the number of people here on HoP - roughly 5 thousand. Now, factor in people who do what we do but aren't members - a liberal estimate could take it as high as 10 thousand? In a world of 6 billion people... hell, just in America alone (280 million) that leaves us with quite a bit of audience and not a lot of imitators.

My personal Yoda told me to "spread the art" when we parted. I must admit, I've had doubts about who I may teach it to, or whether the interests of my students might be sincere or not, but of the ones who eventually leave, it's mostly because they try it out, figure it's not worth getting good at, and take off. But these same people still show up for our performances and cheer as loudly as anyone else.

Hehe... hard to believe how vehement I got in the old "passing trend" article... but a year later I've gotten a bit wiser I'd like to think

What hits the fan is not evenly distributed.

1,591 posts
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada.

Just to play devils advocate here I will say just because it takes time and patience doesn't mean trend followers wont take it up. Skate boarding requires just as much if not more time and patience as Poi. But theres still hoarders of "posers" Most of them can hardly do a kick flip and they carry their skateboards more then they ride them but it's still a pretty big group of people.

We may see some Poi posers. The whole sub culture trend is getting pretty big. Stereotypicaly Poi spinners subcribe to a few sub cultures. So as Trend followers start pretending to be part of these sub cultures by wearing the 'right' clothes and listening to the 'right' music they may also dabble in some of the activities of said sub cultures. Most of these people may never learn anything more then a 3b weave and a butterfly, but some of them will stick with it and continue to learn new moves and contribute to the Poi community like I said earlier.

So it's not really that bad.

CantusSILVER Member
Tantamount to fatuity
15,965 posts
Location: Down the road, United Kingdom

There's Staff Spinning in the original film version of Chitty Chtty Bang Bang. Including some wicked neck wraps. So I'm not overly surprised that there is spinning in the stage version some 35 years later......

As to Poi at glastonbury. I didn't really see very much of it there.

I did, however, see lots of people vaguely waving comets round themselves, slightly out of sync to which ever band they happened to be stood in front of.

A parade of weekend poiers. Who'd spent 10 on something they'd play with all festival then banish to a cupboard when they get home.

Several times I had to physically restrain myself from teaching people how to do a basic cross and follow.

Remember kids, it's very hard to do even a 2 beat when you're stood on one of your comet tails.....

Very occasionally I saw civillians actually Poi spinning. This was due largely to the stirling efforts of Mr Bovril Monkey, Mr SpaceMonkE et al passing on their skills to the masses.

OK enough of my cyniscism. Back to your bemoaning fire arts in popular culture.

"I'll carry this....It's harder to spill a hat" - Chellybean
" a rabbit caught in a lighthouse?" - Chellybean

CharlesBRONZE Member
Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
3,989 posts
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Not mention some amazing canework in Singing in the Rain

HoP Posting Guidelines
* Is it the Truth?
* Is it Fair to all concerned?
* Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
* Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

102 posts
Location: London

I'm sorry, and I can see where it comes from, but I can't stand inverted snobbery about stuff like this! It's selfish! Why should we feel we can hide our fun from other people? S'not fair. The same thing happens all the time with music - like when Prodigy got famous for example. Doesn't mean they are any less good, just that more people know about them. But there were a whole bunch of OSRs going "Oh it's not like in the old days...."

It's true, it may end up being trendy for a bit, but that will pass and Poi and Staff and everything else will continue in its loveliness for the people that live and love it...

Why is it that everthing which is fun is illegal, immoral, or fattening?

PeleBRONZE Member
the henna lady
6,193 posts
Location: WNY, USA

Grunge, Punk, Hairbands...Neo, Retro, Revisited...
Bell bottoms, Hip Huggers, Poets tops... Afro's, dreads, bobs...breakdance, bellydance, African dance....

Each one of these things (and I did not put them in chronological order) were around in the 70's, 80's, 90's and have either made comebacks or are making comebacks.
I was bellydancing when it was popular more than 10 years ago, through a drought and will be when the current fad has passed.
I have been on Home Of Poi for *ahem* several years and I have seen soooooooo many people come and go. *Most* stick around to learn the basics then leave. Some get really into it then life takes over and there is no time. The spinning fad is one that cycles through pretty quickly actually...especially during the summer months here. It picks up and then is forgotten about during winter.
For awhile I too was worried about my place in the performance arena, about my livelihood being challenged, and then I realized it was up to me to live up to the challenge. I have learned alot more than just Poi and have been challenged to move myself in new ways, create new tools and figure out how to use them, refine my business and marketing skills and really put myself out there...and I am still here.. and I am not even a great spinner. I am barely mediocre truth be told.
as a performer I like that challenge, though I admit I get really miffed when I see people who are just learning Poi get all cocky take the stage and end up setting themselves on fire. I am really concerned for the safety of newbies, because so many jump into fire unaware, and that does reflect on the community at large when someone is injured.

In the end, the actual ART of spinning takes alot of time, patience, perserverence and dedication. The fad of spinning just serves to make us all that much better, and the newbies not only add that sense of urgency to our needing to further our own skills but they also add new perspectives and fresh ideas into the mix.

UCOF...I do agree that the media is taking it too far however. They really only see the "cool" factor and not the appropriateness, but then again, they never have.

And to the Newbies, this is not elitist, nor is it being down on you is a genuine concern for something we have grown passionate about over the years. As much as you get protective over something you are passionate about, people on here do as well. It is not saying that you are not welcome and will not be shared with at all, just that it takes time. The fact that you are taking the time to be here on HoP shows much along the lines of dedication and interest beyond the weekend warrior stage already.

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