I often get asked a lot of questions about capoeira as my son, Esperto (his capoeira name) has been learning the art and sport of capoeira for the past 2 and a half years. I, along with other moms, was quoted in an article in January 2013 in New York Family Life magazine about capoeira in general, and my son’s instructors specifically. You can read it here Here are some additional thoughts from my interview that were not included in the final article:
Esperto has always been a very active child, and capoeira gave him an outlet for that physicality. He is encouraged to move his body in powerful ways, but also encouraged to be focused and disciplined. I love that aspect of it- respect for the instructor, the classmates and himself.
The kids classes usually begin with a warm up, practicing some basic moves, playing games or activities to help strengthen their movements and on some days, there’s a roda (pronounced “ho-dah”). The focus is on teaching the children the spoken and unspoken rules to playing capoeira. Eg, how does one enter the roda, and back out of the roda, what are the responsibilities of those keeping the roda, how to improve your ginga, etc.
As a parent, I had to learn to trust the instructors and the process, which was tricky for me at first. I was worried that my son would get hurt doing handstands and other moves, but I was repeatedly assured that kids tend to know their physical limits better than we think. Orixa and Kamikazee (his instructors) also watch very carefully to make sure that all the kids were safe as they were learning.
Esperto now has a capoeira family that he looks forward to seeing at capoeira practice and outside of that time too. I didn’t expect that the relationships would extend past the doors of the studio, but they do and we look forward to seeing all of our children grow in their practice of capoeira.
You can get more information about capoeira classes in Brooklyn by clicking here.