Poi spinning Information

Poi is a performance art employing a ball or balls suspended from a length of flexible material held in the hand and swung in circular patterns. Poi originates from the traditional performing arts of the Māori people of New Zealand, and has since developed many forms enjoyed worldwide as a hobby, exercise, or performance art alongside juggling and other forms of object manipulation.

In the Māori language poi can mean the physical object, the choreography or the accompanying music. In Maori culture poi performance is practiced primarily by women. It is sometimes said that it was first used by men to develop wrist flexibility for the use of hand weapons, such as the club-like patu, mere, and kotiate; however, recent academic study has found no evidence of this.

Māori poi come in two forms: short, with strings equal to the length of the fingertips to the wrist; and long, with strings equal to the distance from fingertips to shoulder. The art includes storytelling and singing choreographed to poi routines, and developed in conjunction with other disciplines, such as waiata a ringa, haka, and titi torea . Modern adaptations include the performance accompanying the 1980s hit song "Poi E".

Wikipedia, Poi spinning, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poi_spinning (as of Apr 1, 2010)

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