In an area spanning over 4000 square miles with hundreds of islands, it’s hard to pin point exactly where in Polynesia fire dancing began. However, it is believed that the Maori people of New Zealand were the first pioneers and the originators of poi. Poi is a Maori word meaning “ball on a string”.
Maori Warriors originally used poi as a form of exercise to train for battle or hunting. By swinging the heavy balls they developed wrist strength and flexibility to handle various weapons and tools. Eventually poi was used as a form of story telling and dance. Contrary to common belief, traditionally poi was never actually lit on fire. The art of dipping poi balls into fuel and lighting them on fire did not occur until the mid 20th century, as a progression of the Samoan fire knife.
The modern day version of poi and fire dancing will be sure to inject some energy and awe inspiring wow factor into your event!
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