Workouts Across the World: Poi Dancing

| Fitness

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(Photo: fire poi Photo Credit: Firepedia)

Dancing to get in shape is a fitness craze that has been sweeping across our country over the last several years. It seems as if we have tried every type of dance out there, from Zumba, to ballroom dancing, to hip hop. Another popular dance out there is Poi dancing, an art form that has only recently permeated the United States. Poi dancing consists of swinging a tether with a ball through the air in a rhythmic, musical form. It incorporates elements of dance and art in order to engage the entire mind and body.

This fascinating dance form originated in New Zealand and became a popular type of fitness dancing around the world because of its burgeoning key attraction: fire spinning! Initially it began as a form of dance performed by the Maori people of New Zealand, where tethered weights were swung in rhythmic patterns. As awareness of this unique dance spread, so did the introduction of spinning fire and other tools that expressed the beauty of Poi dancing.

Poi, or "ball on a chord" in Maori, was used by the Wahine (female dancers) to keep their hands and arms flexible and toned for weaving. For men, Poi dancing was all about increasing strength, coordination and dexterity for battles. As it evolved over time, Poi dancing became a collaboration. It became more than just a way to maintain the coordination necessary for weaving; it became a fitness sensation. Now it incorporates elements like Fire Poi, Tailed Poi (streamers or ribbon attached to the poi head), and L.E.D. Poi in order to create a unique and mesmerizing art form.

(Photo: poi circles Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Poi dancing is a wonderful, integrative experience that encourages creativity through movement and bi-lateral motor skills by engaging both sides of the brain. Some of the other benefits of Poi dancing include:

If you're ready to get started with Poi, you can buy a beginner's DVD online. Click here to get yours!

For a more comprehensive list of benefits, check out Poi Poi.

maori poi women

Poi dancing creates a workout that makes your brain and your body sweat! If you are looking for a way to tone up those muscles and engage in a new and exciting cardiovascular workout, then maybe it's time to give Poi dancing a try!

For more information or to check out our sources for this story, click these links: PlayPoi, Home of Poi, and Poi Poi.

For more Workouts Across the World, Click here!