Filed under: Questions
As soon as something starts to become “cool” and “trendy,” you know there are people out there who will try to make as much money off it as they can.
Capoeira is no exception.
If you do a search online you can find a bunch of different “Cardio Capoeira” type workout videos. They come in all shapes and sizes, and I’m not going to bother linking to any of them here (well, except for a couple of example videos), but you know they’re out there.
Some are good, and some are pretty dismal. Here’s an example of each.
(I can’t link to the example video from the blog, but go to YouTube and search for “cardio capoeira DVD” and you’ll see what I’m talking about.)
I say this is bad because the capoeira in it is just awful. Granted, I haven’t seen the entire video, and I’ve never seen these two play in a roda or anything, but I mean come on; they’re not fooling experienced capoeiristas. You can’t claim to be an instructor of anything when you look like you’ve only been doing it a month yourself.
And I won’t get started on the wannabe quasi-techno capoeira music they have playing…
They are also targeting this “capoeira” workout at “all age levels”, i.e. claiming that adults can’t do any of the ground movements or acrobatics, so they just took that part out of their capoeira, but they’re still leaving the “spirit” of capoeira intact. Last I checked, those are two of the most important parts of the capoeira game. But what do I know?
(I can’t link to this video either, jeez, but go to YouTube and search for “capofit” and you will find it.)
I actually own this video (I was intrigued, it looked halfway decent, so I decided to order it) and it is pretty good. The instructor is actually good (Professor Fabiano, not sure what group he’s from) and so are his students. What’s amazing is that they’re actually doing capoeira. It’s not some watered-down “workout” version, which is OK with me.
The videos also include footage of rodas and demos (so you can see capoeira in action and you know why you’re doing these movements), and they use real capoeira music on the DVD.
If you’re just learning capoeira, or if you’ve had some instruction but can’t get to a class on a regular basis, I would actually recommend buying these videos so you can follow along and train on your own. This series (and I’m sure there are a few others out there) uses true capoeira as a workout, it doesn’t water-down capoeira and change it at all, which is why I’m OK with it.
So now, the question is, what do you think? As we’ve seen, there are good and bad examples of “cardio capoeira” out in the world. Do you think it’s good for the art? Do you think it’s exploitation of capoeira?
Please share your feelings in the comments!
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