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In-Depth Night – Poi

Introduction:

Hello everyone, I hope you’re having a splendid night! My name is Tyson and I’ve been practicing various forms of juggling since Middle school, so I decided to pick poi for my in-depth project. I’ve been working on this for the past 5 months, so I hope you enjoy!

What are poi?

Poi spinning is a form of dance and a type of object manipulation with weights (balls in this case) on the ends of ropes. The poi are swung around in rhythmic patterns, usually to music. They come from New Zealand but became widespread around the world after people saw fire spinning performances (not from New Zealand, but a similar concept).

Why I chose poi:

I chose poi mostly because of my history with different types of juggling, but poi was one I hadn’t tried before. I was interested in poi before I started this project, but I never ended up buying or making my own poi. I also sometimes perform at family or business parties, so I figured this would be something fun to add to my act!

How I made the poi:

First I started with an 80mm Stage ball, 3/8 (0.95cm) rope and PX3 poi knobs from higginsbrother.com. I then cut the rope to about my arm’s lenth, from my shoulder to my thumb joint. I also threaded the rope through the hole in the PX3 knob and tied a basic knot at the end to keep it from sliding out. To prepare the ball to make the poi with, I drilled a hole 3/8 wide for the rope to go into. With the rope, I tied another knot at the other end with about 3 cm of space between the end of the rope and the knot. With the end I just tied a knot on, I stuck the rope into the hole I drilled on the ball. Slowly, I pushed the knot through the hole in the ball with a screw driver until it fully was in the ball.

Here’s the pair of poi that I ordered from higginsbrothers.com.


I hope you enjoy my video!

Special Thanks:

For this project and all the progress I’ve made with it, I would like to thank my mentor, Damian Trasler, for all the help he’s given. He is an excellent mentor and has been really enjoyable to be around.

Thanks for watching! Please leave a comment or a question in response to my  post! I hope you enjoy the rest of your night!

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40 Comments

  1. Emma May 26, 2020

    Wow! I loved watching the video! It was really cool!

  2. Makenzie May 26, 2020

    This is such a cool skill that I’m glad to see you’re developing further! Have you thought about juggling as a part time job? I’m sure you could entertain some parties with your skills! How was poi similar and different to learn than juggling? Great work!

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      I have thought about juggling as a part time job (before COVID), but I never really knew how to properly get stage performances. I’ve made a little money from performing for christmas parties a couple times, but not much else. Because I had similar skillsets already, the beginning of poi was pretty easy to learn compared to when I first started juggling. Once I had tricks down with both juggling and poi, I refined them over a long period of time. I’d say they’re both easy to learn the basics of, but hard to master of course.

  3. Grace May 26, 2020

    I loved watching the video Tyson! Doing this must have taken a lot of coordination!

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      The coordination comes with practice! A lot of the movements were similar to other juggling forms, but it was still difficult.

  4. Simran May 26, 2020

    This is really cool Tyson! I liked the bloopers as well. Well done 🙂

  5. Colby May 26, 2020

    ooooooo so cool

  6. Jian Ross May 26, 2020

    Woahhhh! The coordination you have is unreal! What is your next step in the future?

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      In the future I plan to keep working on this enough to incorporate it into proper performances!

  7. Anonymous May 26, 2020

    You just keep expanding your repertoire. I look forward to seeing this in person. The inclusion of Bloopers was brilliant. I kept thinking, oh please don’t hit the windows! Very well done.

  8. Joanna May 26, 2020

    this must have taken some hard work! great job, Tyson!!!

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      Thanks Joanna! Great job on your n-depth as well!

  9. Avery May 26, 2020

    These look really tricky but awesome once you get proficient at them. I love the moment when you hit the camera with one XD

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      Thanks, I hit the camera many more time than that, but I didn’t have time to include them all!

  10. Brianna May 26, 2020

    Wow! You’re so good at juggling and you improved so much!

  11. rochambers May 26, 2020

    You really mastered the three beat weave. That is not an easy skill for a beginner. I also saw lots of good stalls. We have done poi with glow sticks tied to the ropes at night – it is a little safer than fire but still impressive. Did you do any research in the history and uses of poi by the Maori?

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      Thanks! At the beginning of the project I did a little reasearch into the history and uses by the Maori, but I didn’t delve too deep into it.

  12. snishimura May 26, 2020

    This looks like it was a lot of fun but challenging. I loved that you included your bloopers. It’s all about the process!

  13. Henry T May 26, 2020

    This must have required so much practice and focus! Nice job the bloopers were a great addition!

  14. 108-lyorke1 May 26, 2020

    It looks like it was difficult to make sure the poi didn’t get tangled while you were preforming.
    BTW-nice hoodie

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      Yeah, while practicing I ended up tangling them up a lot. When they get tangled they immediately whack m, so I have to be careful.
      Also, yes, it is a nice hoodie.

  15. qmtk May 26, 2020

    You are so dedicated to this skill. You are a performer. Making your own poi, too. What is next?

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      With poi, I plan on learning some more contact poi skills. This would mean a lot more movement that isn’ t just my hands. I would be holding them on my elbows and other spot. These kinds of tricks work much better for dance performances.

  16. Mike May 26, 2020

    Yooooooooooo! I can tell from the video that you’ve practiced a lot. Also epic bloopers!👍

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      Thanks Mike! Your games were a lot of fun too!

  17. Grace May 26, 2020

    Wow, Tyson! This is so cool. I loved watching your progress!

  18. Christal May 26, 2020

    Love the Bloopers & am very proud of how hard you worked on your tricks. Well done presentation & wish it could have been seen onstage!

  19. Draedon May 26, 2020

    Have you since performed for anyone with the poi?

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      I haven’t performed any full performances with them yet. I’ve shown them to a few people, but I’d like to refine my skills a little more before I do a proper performance with them.

  20. Mel May 26, 2020

    the bloopers look like they hurt

    • Tyson Z May 26, 2020 — Post Author

      Yeah, I was sore after a lot of them. Many of them didn’t hurt too bad, but sometimes I would go too fast and those hurt a lot more!

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