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Blaze ~ Intermediate: Compound Circles

Compound Circles

These posters are a summary introduction to help our students visualise & grasp the basic concepts of Normal Flowers.

  • Extensions ~ Compound Circles poster

An extension is a “giant” move.  In Beginners, extensions are introduced in the “giant windmill”, “buzzsaw extension” and “giant weave”.

Whereas in the case of small poi circles, the centre of the circle is the hand; for an extension, the arm is kept loose and straight and the centre of the big circle is the shoulder.

An extension can be a complete big circle, either continous or coming back to a small circle (1 petal) at either bottom, left, top or right in wall plane or bottom, back, top, front in wheel plane (imagine the 4 points of a cross made up of 2 axis:  horizontal and vertical).  It could also be a half circle (arc) between 2 horizontal or vertical points or a quarter circle (arc) between two adjacent points on the horizontal/vertical axis of the cross.

  • Compound Circles ~ Normal Flowers poster

  • Poi Chi poster

“Poi Chi” is a concept I’ve borrowed from Yuta. This is a fantastic exercise for practising the arm movements of Compound Circles without poi.

  • Compound Circles ~ Normal Flowers lesson

(the lesson outline for the Compound Circles ~ Normal Flowers module taught at our Poi Workshop in Hogsback)

  • Two 2-Petal Flower drills

horizontal axis ~ (left = lime green, right = red)

  1. Wallplane (in front of body).  Same direction, clockwise, split time.  As if facing the diagram, beginning with both arms spinning small circles on the left, extending first the right arm in a complete big circle and then in half big circles, stopping on the right and the left; same for the left arm.
  2. Wheel plane (alongside body).  Same direction, split time.  Starting with backwards buzzsaw, extending both arms over the top, turning 180 degrees to forward buzzsaw then dropping both hands extending through the bottom, turning 180 degrees back to backwards buzzsaw…  The direction you turn is the arm that leads, the other following.

Normal Flowers:  Animation

There Are Two Ways to Get From Point A to Point B

Well actually, there are more – most notably directly via floaters – but for now…

  • poster

To illustrate the difference between “Normal” (poi & arm spinning in the same direction via extensions) & “Anti-Spin” (poi & arm spinning in opposite directions via anti-spin loops):

Anti-Spin Flower:  Animation


Left Arm ~ full normal circle

  1. arm & poi are moving together as a unit in a clockwise direction, drawing 1 big full circle (extension)
  2. the movement is slo-o-w, as slow as can be performed without the poi losing momentum and succumbing to gravity at the top of the circle – this is to give the other arm time to anti-spin 3 loops and complete the shape together
  3. follows lightly behind the right arm- poi will meet and cross only once:  on the vertical axis

Right Arm ~ 3 petal anti-spin

  1. arm moves around the shoulder in a clockwise direction
  2. poi spins anti-clockwise:  3 loops
  3. leads slightly

It is possible to switch direction and role of the arms mid-move – both arms will be spinning anti-clockwise:  the anti-spin poi ‘simply’ continues in an anti-clockwise normal extension and the previously normal arm/poi now spins anti-spin, clockwise.

  • more illustrated & animated lessons coming soon!

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