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Posted: I have been doing this for 11 months now, and in that time realistically ive probably done a about 100-150 hours of practice (not a lot i know) but I realised I only know about a dozen moves, most of which are pretty basic.
How long does it take to get 'good'... how long do you practice for?
Also, how do you go about learning things like flowers and stall chasers? I have no idea where to even begin!
Getting 'good' takes vastly different amounts of time for different people, because it's entirely subjective, and up to each individual. Peeps might have a different idea of what qualifies as good, and peeps might learn things at different rates. Also, how do you judge this sort of thing?
Most of the people I know who I view as 'good' put so many hours of practice into what they do that their lives almost revolve around it. For me, saying someone is good equates to them being mind-breakingly awesome, because it's a stupid and impossible proposition imo to try judging and categorising spinners by ability.
As for your other question, the best way would be to find someone local to spin with who already knows these things and (preferably) is also good at teaching them. If there aren't any local spinners, then you could probably find some baller teachers at a spinning/fire festival (use duh google-fu!), and failing even that, youtube is your friend.
"If all else fails, immortality can always be assured by spectacular error."
i agree with beaniebob, 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder' and all that jazz will affect what 'good' means and personal ability changes how quick you learn things. ive been spinning poi for just over 2yrs and qualify myself as 'not too shabby' but ive seen someone pick up a pair of poi and in less than a month know more tricks than me despite only spinning on the weekends (though i still maintain that while his technical skill is better, my spinning looks better...im not sure how, it just does)
for learning new things, finding other spinners works best but if thats not possible then tutorials on youtube can be quite useful -even if you dont learn the trick that it is showing, if you play around with what you see then you can start working out other tricks, or maybe creating your own
I dont want to be called 'the greatest' or 'one of the greats'; let other guys claim to be the best. I just want to be known as a clown, to me thats the height of my profession. It means you can do everything-sing, dance, and above all, make people laugh
Thanks... it is so hard meeting people who are into it around here.. sucks because I am a really lame ass learner and need to be 'taught' rather than 'self taught' if that makes sense.
Maybe I will take a look at meet others! do you happen to know a good tutorial for those upwards stalls like in stall chasers? I have no idea how to practice them whenever I try and do one the poi doesnt stop it just wants to keep spinning
It sounds to me as though you have gotten to that point that all beginners must reach. The point where you finally realize that you really don’t know much at all. When we start with a performance art, we learn thing and feel like we are progressing well… and then at some point, for whatever reason, it kind of hits us that there is SO MUCH to learn!
I hit this point a little over a year and a half ago. I remember being like, “wow, I didn’t realize just how much is possible with poi! I really don’t know anything!” It was a little depressing, but I channeled my frustration into my practice and used it to my advantage.
I have been spinning poi for a little over two years, (as of January 9). I was never talented at all with movement, always being a very clumsy person, so starting with poi was a monumental task for me. It has not been easy and has required a lot of hard work. Still the payoff has been well worth my time and effort thus far.
With regards to how long it takes to “get good”, I couldn’t really tell you.
I know quite a few moves, (butterfly weaves, matrix, wall plane flowers, etc.), but I would not consider myself “good” in the slightest. Sure, if I am out practicing, I typically get people telling me that I am good at it, but personally, so long as there are moves that I cannot do, I will never consider myself “good”. There will always be new moves to stump you, new moves that you feel you could not possibly wrap your brain around, (like Jonathan Alverez’s mind-blowing butterfly 4-poi triquetra/extensions). Moves like that I may never learn, but I will keep pushing myself nonetheless.
Practice is key, my first year, I practiced for over 1200 hours. But there are people who can practice for 100 and learn as much as I have.
I devoted my first few months to developing good wall planes, and I have been so glad I did. I really just wanted to develop a fluidity with spinning, I wanted to understand the motion of the poi, to be able to know how they would react to any change I made. It has been a fun journey.
So my closing thoughts for you are these:
1: Do not EVER compare yourself to another spinner. You are who you are and are meant to be yourself. You will progress at your own rate.
2: Practice, not with a negative mindset of “I will never learn this”, but with a positive, playful mindset of “I can do this, it is only a puzzle”.
3: Use the Internet. We have such an awesome learning tool at our disposal, don’t take it for granted.
I am sorry that this post is so long, but I really hope that at least some of it is able to help you, and that you may have been encouraged through it.
One final note: I will not say, “Never say “I can’t.”.” But never leave it as that. Always add a “yet”.
We all can’t… yet. But with time and practice, we will learn.
Flow on my friend, may your journey be long and joyous, a time of enlightenment, and transcendence. Until next time.
Hi, I've been spinning for about 13 years (approximately 154 months ;)) and I still wouldn't describe myself as good.
I think poi, staff etc are an art. And much like any other art there is no way you can ever learn all of it, there is always some way to improve, learn new things, techniques, transitions, nuances etc. You can only strive to get better.
I have no idea about stall chasers. It's not a term I am familiar with. But I found a good way to get your planes straight and keep the toys in line with flowers is to practice next to a wall. Also try to keep your movements fluid and twist your torso, rather than over reaching yourself or else you will end up straining and pulling your stomach and back muscles. As to actual lessons, seek out Meenik/Nick Woolsey's lessons on YouTube or at https://www.playpoi.com/learn/ Or there are some very good and practical lessons right here on HoP
"I'll carry this....It's harder to spill a hat" - Chellybean "...like a rabbit caught in a lighthouse?" - Chellybean
The best way i've progressed in myself is by doing a video every so often (havent done one in several years now... no camera sucks...) and going back and watching them later on.. you'll find yourself laughing at how you thought you were "good" at the time (i do it all the time). as far as learning goes Nick Woolsey, Alien Jon and many others have videos on youtube (sometimes using the word "lesson" and sometimes "tutorial") that are geared specifically for teaching. If you're an individual who learns better from a physical "teacher" then it all depends on your location.
Thank you! It is nice to know that I am appreciated.
Pendulum weaves are fun, and extremely useful. I'm just going to guess use learned through Nick Woolsey's "(Not) 1.5 Beat Unweave" Tutorial? One thing I like to do is figure out just how many transitions a new move opens up. If you haven't noticed yet, pendulum weaves are an awesome way to transition from split-time same direction and split-time opposite direction spinning! This is especially useful for transitioning say, between a three beat weave and a 3 beat ttn. I also sometimes use it to transitions between wall plane flowers and butterfly wall plane flowers. You could always just stall, but sometimes a few extra beats really can help make the transition stand out more.
I do not know what tutorial you had watched for triquetras but the tutorial that actually helped me the most was not even about triquetras! I learned them after watching the "Floating Triquetras" tutorial. I don't know if this will help you at all. Just let me know.
If this doesn't help you, I'll see what I can do to continue to help.
I would love to watch you, from the sounds of things you qualify as 'good
I think more than anything I am just stuck with where to go... now please don't laugh at me for posting this but I can be kinda OCD about things at times and so I made a list of the moves I can 'do'...
Well, thats actually a good arsenal of moves. I have really been working on smoothing out my spinning (mastery of moves rather than quantity). I still have a lot of work yet, but here is a video of some spinning I did a few months ago. I kept it pretty simple. I apologize: I was not at my best that night. It was 10 degrees below zero and i was spinning out on a frozen lake. Brrrr....
Anyway, I hope that maybe you will be able to understand through this video what I have been working on. I am sure that I am far below the expectations you had set for me, but no one is perfect...
P.S. the video is better after 3:06 (once the fire spinning starts). Sorry again about the poor quality!
I will think about where you could go from here and get back to you. Take care.
Hey twig. Here's a list of some Intermediate poi oves. You could always look into some of these if you are bored. Most of them if googled will bring up videos from play poi.
Tick Tock, and Time Flies Anti-Spin Fountain Orbitals (AKA Superduperuberloops) Hyperloops The Anti-Spin Weave Flowers and CAPs Atomic 3-Beat Weave Crossers 4-Beat Windmill 5-Beat Weaves The not (1.5) Beat (un)Weave BTB Weaves (Behind The Back) Isolations Under the Legs (Dodging Daggers etc.) Spiral Wraps The No-Beat Windmill Hybrid Variations and Linking Waist Wraps Barrel Jumps 4-Beat TTN, Split-Time Butterfly Crossovers, and Butterfly Weaves
Awesome, I think your spinning is great! it is very fluid! 4:38 looks amazing (and really really hard!!)
Thank you for the list! These are things I am currently working on but mainly it just consists of smacking myself in the head..
4-Beat Windmill 5-Beat Weaves The not (1.5) Beat (un)Weave Spiral Wraps The No-Beat Windmill
So I guess I will persevere for a while.
I would love to learn flowers and behind the back weave... but I havent even attempted to learn them because in my head they are just difficult and I watch people doing them and just think 'i could never do that'. I guess my attitude makes sense, I am probably one of the least coordinated people I have ever met.
I also really want to learn this:
but I cant even do 2 beat weaves normally... I only did them whilst I leasrnt the 3 beat now I cant break the habit and relearn the 2 beat... let alone in that awkward position
But yes! thank you for sharing the video, I love those lil pendulum things you do too...they look so cool! I have a long way to go. EDITED_BY: twig (1395097714)
Thank you very much! I do strive for fluidity. The move at 4:38 is just one of the simplest anti-spin wall-plane flowers. I highly doubt that you are that uncoordinated. 2 years ago, I couldn't even catch a ball that was thrown to me. I was always tripping over my feet! I have come quite a way.
Interesting story: When I started with poi, I spent months developing control over the poi and trying to grasp the fundamentals of how they moved and behaved. It seemed like an odd way to go about learning, but I figured it would help me in the long run. After two years, I can tell you that my theory worked... at least for me.
I just checked out the link to the advanced two beat weaves that you posted. Having never heard of the move, I was curious as to what it was all about. As I watched the tutorial, I relayed that I had never done the move before. So... I ran to my room, grabbed some poi and tried it. What I found surprised me.
I had not practiced the 2 beat weaves in over two years, but was able to perform every single variation of the advanced 2 beat on my first try! I believe this is due to two main factors.
1. My early conquest of learning control. 2. I am a very visual person and always visualize a move in my mind before attempting it.
In the end, I was pleasantly surprised. Its always nice to find that something you decided to try worked.
Just keep persevering and never give up. Remember: Yes you do have a lot to learn, but so do all the rest of us! (Except maybe Jonathan Alverez.)
P.S. Feel free to email me if you ever get stuck. I'd be happy to make a video to try to help. P.P.S. PM me if you can't find my email.
thats awesome, I am still struggling with normal 2 beat weaves haha! I think the pattern of the 3 beat weave has just become so set in my muscle memory its really really hard for me to break it, particularly backwards! The reason I want to learn so bnadly is because I want to be able to do the 4 x 4 fountain (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xskYEOFYrjM) it looks awesome! Nick woolsey has put up quite a few videos about it.
I think partially the problem is I am trying to learn 8 new moves at the same time...is that too mcuh? I have no idea... but maybe it would be better to focus on a few rather than trying to learn 8 at the same time. It is just I look at things and think 'wow, cant wait to learn that!'... I did manage to do the BTB weave for about seconds before smacking myself last night though
Yeah, the 4x4 fountain is insanely useful. It is a great transition between moves. I actually figured the fountain out on my own w/out any tutorial, the funny thing was that the way i learned to do the fountain was actually the 4x4. It probably worked out this way because I discovered it as i was transitioning between a weave and an early attempt at a crosser.
If i were you, i would make a list of the moves you want to learn and then prioritize them. Make sure that if any of the moves are built off of other moves that you learn the more basic move first. (i.e. learning butterfly before you learn butterfly weaves) You may have a move that you really want to learn, but lots of times you need to start with the most basic form of a move.
Once you have a prioritized list, just chose 2 or 3 to work on. If you chose to work on 2 and find yourself getting bored, just add in another move to spice things up.
Definitely worth working on.. perhaps even for the matrix move thingy?
Slightly off topic but I got my first fire poi recently, I love them! However, what do people usually use (other than skill!) over their head so as to not burn their hair? Woould something like this be okay?
Yes, I really like the matrix. It took me a while to learn because i couldn't find a tutorial on it and had to figure it out on my own.
I personally do not cover my hair with anything, but that is primarily because I do not have extremely long hair (~4"). That bandana would work fine. It is cotton and therefore will not melt if it does manage to catch.
NEVER SPIN FIRE IN SYNTHETIC TEXTILES!!!
You could also look into something made out of nomex, which is fire-resistant. Nomex will set you back more than cotton ($12-$15), but Nomex has very good flame resistant properties. Nomex Bandana (Google)
Of course, it is up to you, but here is a video comparing polycotton to nomex. It's worth watching. Cotton will be better that polycotton for sure, but still, nomex is incredible stuff.
ha I decided to get a nomex bandana, that stuff is awesome!
I am kinda bummed today because I realised how freaking SLOPPY I am, like with shoulder reels for instance, one way they look really nice and smooth but the other way is totally awkward, similar with the hip reels , one way looks good, the other way looks awful, and turning in the weaves, most ways look fine/good but one particular way they are totally sloppy with awful plane control!
It is really frustrating because I know I need to make them MUCH better but part of me is frankly too lazy because I want to spend time learning stuff that is sort of 'beyond the basics'
awesome! let me know how that works out for you!
with shoulder/hip reels, and weaves, consider laying tape down on either side of you in straight lines to form "tracks". then just practice and practice turning on these tracks trying to keep everything straight. sooner or later everything will smooth itself out. just remember, the more you practice the basics, the easier it will be to learn the more advanced moves.
Yeah... i think it will be realky good... especially because alot of tge time i practise in a small garden so i kind of have a tendency to just stand there as there isnt much space to move around... a really bad habit!
I like it! What is that move you do at 3:40? it looks awesome! and the music and editing are really good!
One thing I would say is I think it would have been nice to hear a bit more about how it has improved your life on a more personal level if that makes any sense? I love that you are so passionate about poi and it would have been nice to hear a bit more about how it has changed your life! Only a little thing really but other than that its really good!
oh also... I have those podpoi covers too haha, I love them! I love the drag feeling they give when you spin .