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I'm the type of person who enjoys movement and finds importance in it, so poi has been my number 1 influence to going outside to play and move more. It's help me become better with coordination, quick reaction, focus, mobility, serenity and so on. I believe it really is healthy for the mind, body and soul. If I had to choose just one tool to use for body movement, it would probably be poi. I find it to go hand in hand with a majority of my interests as I find a connection between them, and with that said, poi will always be something I do and share with the world.
I have epilepsy. I have been dealing with grand mal seizures since I was 18 years old, I'm 25 now. With my meds comes crazy side effects and my mind is not clear unless I'm doing stuff I love like poi or skateboarding. I went to the best neurologist around Knoxville TN area. We talked about things I like to do, like skateboarding, and I mentioned spinning fire. He said he was totally in support of fire spinning because of the benefits from exercise and the concentration, because it works the brain.
Poi is definitely helping me with my Multiple Sclerosis, as it keep my brain and body active. I have muscle weakness in both arms so a daily poi workout is helping loads. I also use it as a form of pain management as I know I can feel pain, but it becomes less of a priority when you're focusing on executing a certain poi move.
Poi has had a great impact on my life. Because I am so hyperactive and have ADHD poi helps me focus and calms me down. Every time I spin I don’t think about anything else, just that moment in time. My hand and leg coordination has improved dramatically which is mostly noticeable in my sport life. Currently I am doing fire shows as much as I can. With my friend we do a lot of workshops, especially for kids and older people (we work with lots of senior homes and youth associations for gifted kids), because we love seeing the look on their face when they learn a move or two and they thought that this is impossible.
Being a graphic designer, I appreciate how even clumsily playing poi relaxes my wrists and fingers that spend a lot of time wrapped around a computer mouse. I can feel that I relax when playing poi, thinking about the poi itself and how do I get to do with it what I would like to do with it, which is mightily relieving and mind-detoxing. So far I am pretty clueless about what I am doing, but I am learning by doing and it's been a lot of fun!
I learnt to spin poi when I was dealing with all sorts of changes in my life. It absorbed the fear and hesitation, and gave me courage, possibility, and the thrill of something new. Since then, it’s always been something I can lose myself in, and find myself in. It’s one of the most valuable tools I have to ground my emotions, distract from anxiety, and refocus myself - a mental sanctuary.