Thursday, November 3, 2016

Capoeira as a full body and mind workout!

Oi (Hello in Brazilian Portuguese)!
I am greeting you in Brazilian Portuguese as I want to talk about one of my favorite workouts: Capoeira, an Afro-Brazilian martial arts! I recently switched capoeira groups (there are many) from Capoeira sul da bahia to Cordão de Ouro, and below is a video of me in the batizado (baptism in capoeira) in Los Angeles this past October where I got my 3rd cord! I currently train with Contra Mestre Xango and Contra Mestre Beringela in the Bay Area, California, but our sister group is in Los Angeles (hence the event being held there this year).

Capoeira is amazing for the body, mind and soul
So.. Why is Capoeira so amazing you ask? Well- let me tell you: 

BODY:  For the body- capoeira is a full-body workout, with the basic step (the ginga) utilizing the full body and constantly being in motion. The ginga along with the kicks (chutas), flips/fancy moves (floreios), and ground movements provide constant cardio, and flexibility and strength training. Its like a burpee on steroids!

Aside from the full body workout, I love using capoeira in my personal training sessions since it also helps with overall body awareness and coordination! The moves are not always simple, and it takes the interaction between the mind and body (more than what occurs when you go for a run or get on a bike) to follow a move through to completion.

MIND: As capoeira is a two-person game, you need to constantly think and move with the other person in mind. In  addition to the mind getting the body to form complex moves requiring intense coordination and balance- in order to outsmart the other person and trap them into falling for one of your tricks-your mind needs to function as if you were playing chess during a fire or flood.. .you have to think fast and smart!

SOUL: Capoeira is amazing for the soul, as this Afro-Brazilian martial arts integrates the Afro-Brazilian culture, music and social life all into one. The culture and the music of capoeira both flow into this martial arts. The music provides the energy (Axé) for the roda (where the capoeira games occur), and the culture can be found through the songs (sung in portuguese), and other activities often associated with capoeira (such as samba!). Once you start doing capoeira, you will soon find yourself over at other people's houses watching capoeira videos, eating out after class, and just being there for each-other. 

I completely recommend capoeira for anyone that wants that wants any of the following: to get in shape, sharpen their mind, have a fun social life, learn another culture and language, and play music. 

On this note, I am super excited for one of my good friend's capoeira event this weekend in Oakland, California! Instructors Menina is an inspiration, and is putting on her first women's event this Nov. 4 (College of the Arts, Oakland) and Nov. 5th (Bandaloop studio in Oakland). 

For more information -please see: 

Also if you can't attend but you love the idea of empowering women and being fit- please help sponsor our event and donate at:

We need donations to pay all of the instructors that are giving workshops (and to reimburse them for their flights to California!)

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