What it’s Like to Spin Fire Poi
Once you’ve had enough practice with your poi, you may be ready to spin fire poi. By enough practice I mean you’ve mastered a few moves so well that you can do them with both hands, in both directions, and by feel with your eyes closed. You may now be ready to take your flow arts to a new level: fire spinning! The fire can be daunting, and well intimidating for good reason. I have here a list of things you can expect to experience, that will enable you more confidence and excitement in your fire flow arts career.
The energy peaks.
Flow arts, no matter what prop you use, generates a lot of energy, and if you don’t have good poise and some basic breath control, it’s likely it will get out of hand fast and you’ll hit yourself. This is perhaps the most important thing to note upon fire spinning. The energy you experienced without fire will multiply many times over when you light your wicks and begin spinning them. It’s well important that you focus on being calm, keep your mind on yourself, and only do what you feel 100% confident in. Fire spinning is not a time for excess experimentation and requires your full sober attention, even if your crowd is enjoying drugs and alcohol. This is the number one point I can recommend if you would like to be fire spinning like a professional, long-term.
The hot metal on your prop is what is more dangerous than the fire.
People who aren’t familiar with fire may often regard it as dangerous. And yes, if not respected alongside its fuel source, it can be a devastating adversary. Though with fire spinning, as long as you don’t have excess fuel on your prop wick, and you don’t have many things around that are highly flammable, the fire itself is not very dangerous. Well aside from to your hair or loose articles of clothing. What is dangerous is the hot metal closest to your wicks. If the prop is professionally made, the only hot metal that is exposed is where the wick connects with the poi tether, usually an eye hook and a clasp that screws open and closed.
Always make sure that these are in good condition and tightened on; the second most dangerous thing in fire spinning is a flaming projectile. When this hot metal touches skin, it’s an instant burn and scar. If you want to guarantee that you will continue to be unscathed, make sure you have clothes that cover your skin. Where you know the metal will come in contact with you.
All Eyes Are On You
Fire attracts attention, and when we are wielding them consciously and in sacred shapes and patterns, to the humans around you it is like a moth feasting on light. Be prepared to know and feel that you are the center of attention and learn to enjoy it. Else, the excess pressure and energy coming in from all around you may make for a slippery slope of disaster if you make a mistake. The anxiety will effortlessly break your focus and create a continuous pattern of error until you have to stop. I highly suggest doing your first few burns with an experienced professional, or better, your teacher. Reach out to me if you need one; I have trained dozens of fire performers from scratch and not one injury have they experienced.
Grow accustomed to spinning fire with a trusted set of eyes around you. Then move to closer friends and family whom you know love and support you and will cheer you on! Then, when you feel ready to do it around people you don’t know, give it a go, don’t have expectations of yourself. Be willing to not burn, or put the fire out, if you feel that is the right choice. There is certainly more shame in hurting yourself then quitting. If anyone makes you feel otherwise, drop that relationship like a bad habit.
Overall, fire spinning is just equally as fun as it is intimidating. It’s an amazing feeling when you become truly comfortable with the fire. Not many in our world have done this, or respect enough those who have. I am ever working towards this art. It’s one that is world renown for something that is not just for entertainment, but of ultimate respect and worship. We are the beings who are emulating what the micro and macro cosmos are doing in and around our person. We are hypnotists of pure inspiration and life force energy! Let’s work together and create our practice into a globally recognized fine art, safely.
Yours in flow,