My little ones had a grand adventure yesterday.  My daughter has been asking to take Karate, but we’ve not found a dojo we (I) like yet.  However on Saturday my husband and I met some friends who suggested Capoeira.  In our area (check), good recommendation (check), of cultural interest (double check)… why not!  We took our first class and can I just say, the kids had a blast!!  My girl came over halfway through and said, “Mommie, I like it!” and ran back to the class!

Capoeira is an art and martial art form that arrived in Brazil with African slaves and developed over generations.  It’s roots are in Africa and combines rhythm and dance with fighting.  While the full history is not known, it may be descended from ritual displays of strength and ritual dance.  Between 1890 and 1930, it was banned and only practiced in secret societies and by Malandros (criminals).  Today, it is a flourishing cultural form and hailed as the National Sport in Brazil.

Brazil Cap 2007
Capoeira on the beach in Bahia, Brazil (c 2007)

For me the cultural piece is fantastic – my children are learning history, language, music and dance at the same time they are building confidence in a martial art! Big score – I hope they keep it up!

Check out the video clip below – gives a flavor of the class and I have to say the patience of the instructor was fantastic!!  Keeping little and mid-sized ones focused for 75 min… kudos!

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