Monday, July 12, 2010

Capoeira at the library

Our library has a wonderful month of activities this summer.  Every Wednesday there is a workshop or class, and every Saturday there is a performance or demonstration.  This Saturday was what I thought would be a demonstration of capoeira, the dance/martial art form created by the African slaves in Brazil as a way to "legally" practice fighting under the watchful eyes of the plantation owners.  It turned out to be a participatory workshop, and Eliza loved it!

After a quick demonstration of the breakdance-like moves, the instructor started the kids playing some games that worked on their balance.  The first challenge was to stand on one foot and lean over and grab a paper bag in your teeth and lift it off the ground.  This is not as easy as it may seem...
Taking a break from the balancing, the instructors (a man and a boy who appeared to be about 13 - he was awesome!) taught the basic dance step that begins the game of capoeira.  It's called the ginga, and is a rocking one foot after the other, while blocking your face with one arm and then the other.  The kids paired up and practiced.

The second balancing challenge was to go against someone in the circle, picking up the paper bag again with your teeth, standing on one foot, not using your hands, and take it out of the circle before your opponent.  Here (above) Eliza and Ani go against one of the librarians...
After learning some basic kicks and blocks, it was time to try them out!
Totally fun.

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

And what do you mean, "not as easy at it sounds!?!"
Doesn't sound very easy to me!
Does make me think that I need to do some serious agility training, however.