Capoeira is a unique blend of martial arts, dance, music and tradition that originates from Brazil. It builds core strength, flexibility, balance and is an ideal workout for people of all ages. The game, or “Jogo de Capoeira” is best described as a circle (called a “roda”) in which two players, or “Capoeiristas“, display their techniques in a whirlwind of power, speed, and agility. They are guided by the music, singing, and clapping of the people in the roda.
In a Capoeira game, there is an acrobatic and beautiful avoidance of physical contact. The players’ movements display ritual, trickery, and grace. Songs rich with tradition are sung in reference to what is occurring at that very moment in the game. This gathering of musicians and artistes forms a community of expression. Many moves involve headstands, handstands, cartwheels and other improvised movements.
At its best expression, there is usually minimal contact between players. Skill is cultivated to pull blows, and it is enough to show that a kick could have landed, without striking the other person.
In class, students learn not only the physical elements of Capoeira, but also to sing, play musical instruments, and also possibly to speak a whole new language via the exposure to Portuguese which forms the base language of Capoeira.