Poi Concept #3: The Secret of Circles
This is a relatively simple poi spinning concept, but much like a Zen koan, its meaning is wrapped in mystery, more difficult to grasp than I thought possible. Very few students have ever comprehended this concept, and even fewer, once grasping it, have fully embraced its meaning in their spinning.
So here it is
The concept is this: if you spin a single poi in a certain direction, say forward (down) toward the west, and maintain the same rotation no matter what you do, the circle’s direction never changes.
Got it? Good, now go be inspired to new levels of spinning bliss!
What!? I’m not enlightened!
Okay okay, let’s probe a little further.
Say you’re spinning forward, toward west, with your right hand. Then you cross your hand across your body so the circle is on your left side. Still rotating west, right?
Say you spin forward toward west with your right hand, and turn your body, but not your arm, 180 degrees to your right. Your right arm is now across your belly or chest. The poi’s rotation is still . . . west.
Say you swing the poi under your right leg from the front. As it swings up toward your back, you rotate 180 degrees left, the poi comes out from between your legs, and you keep spinning . . . west.
See the trend?
Now for the Real Point
The real point lies within the second two examples above. You spin west and turn your body 180 degrees, and the circle doesn’t change, but your relation to it does. So you have to wrap your brain around the idea that while the poi keeps rotating in the exact same direction—west—the fact that you turn around means your hand must now work to maintain a reverse rotation!
In other words, you don’t simply spin the poi forward, turn around, and keep spinning the poi forward. You spin forward, turn around, and spin the poi in reverse.
Whoah. Headache! Next thing you know I’ll have it all tied together with the Theory of Relativity!
So really then, you must maintain awareness of two ideas at the same time:
The rotation of the poi will continue in the same direction until you shift the plane, bounce the poi, stall it and reverse directions, etc.
As long as the rotation of the poi continues uninterrupted, you must change the direction of force applied by your hand any time you turn away from you original position.
Thus: the poi’s rotation never changes, and the poi’s rotation constantly changes in relation to whatever direction you face.
And that’s the secret
Whether koan or quantam mechanics or otherwise, I think it’s a pretty awesome and powerful idea. So embrace it. Contemplate it. And go spin like a dervish!