Poi were used by the Maori Warriors to increase wrist flexibility. In modern times, it’s known more as an art form.

I learned how to spin poi and fire in New Zealand in 2003. It’s also where I learned how to make my own set; and so can you! Here’s the set I made tonight along with instructions.

1)Materials needed: 2 tennis balls, 2 lengths of string quite a bit longer than your arm, 2 pieces of fabric roughly 11 x 11 inches, sharp knife, 4 zip ties, 2 washers, material to make loops, pencil or chopstick and scissors

2)Cut 2 holes in each ball. A large hole on one end and on the other a slip that a pencil or chopstick can fit through, but not too big that the washer will go through.

3)Tie a washer on one end of string, and thread through the big hole first with the chopstick.

4)The bulk of the knots and washer will “catch” on the top hole.

5)Most people prefer the length be from the end of your hand to your armpit. Measure this length. You can then use a ribbon for example to make 2 loops for your first 2 fingers. You can use a string or zip tie to attach them. make sure the added length of the loops is accounted for in your measure.

6)Completed loops

7)Lay ball in the middle of fabric

8)Pull tight and gather it at the top where the string comes out

9)Attach a zip tie and pull really tight! Trim off excess (string can be used in place of zip ties. You may need a hand getting it super tight)

10)Set complete! Now learn how to spin this winter!

I could not locate my fire spinning video, but this is my friend Becki, who is an amazing fire spinner, just at the tail end of the burn to get the idea. It’s really too short.

Additionally, there’s tons of informational videos on the web so you can teach yourself. Here’s a fun video I found: