What is poi? Poi, (plural is also just “poi”, and not “pois”), is a Maori word meaning ball on cord. Poi was first developed by the Maori of New Zealand, and were used by both sexes. The women used poi to keep their hands nimble for weaving, and the men used it as a training tool for battle.
Since then, poi has drastically changed. It has taken on many forms, and has been influenced by the martial arts, and several more modern performance arts.
In the more recent past, poi has been influenced by the glow stringing/sticking rave culture. Many new moves, (such as orbitals), have been brought to poi through this influence.
There are many different types of poi.
Sock poi, cone poi, flag poi, veil poi, fire poi, sparkle poi, club poi, and contact poi, just to name a few. Each has its own benefits and drawbacks. Fire and sparkle poi are most dangerous, while fabric poi are the most benign.
Poi is a branch of the flow arts, and is useful in reaching the flow state. It’s uses range from physical therapy, to fitness, to recreation. Poi offers phenomenal health benefits. Poi can strengthen hand-eye coordination, improve awareness, and possibly even raise IQ by strengthening the corpus callosum. So go, get a pair!!!