I have been seriously thinking about getting into fans recently after seeing some amazing videos and am wondering what to start with....my goal is to get some fire fans but it seems a little silly to get them straight away and expensive when I havnt even tried it yet. Although I am pretty sure I'll love it.
So my question is...what to practice with? Should I just buy some fire fans and practice lots before lighting up (obviously) or is there something else I can start with. I saw some practice fans on trick concepts but it seems pointless to spend that money.
What did you start with and what are some good tips for choosing fans?
I think most people usually just start with the fire kind, and practice unlit until they are comfortable to use them lit.
good advice! thats what i'd reccommend also, practice with them unlit until you are comfortable lighting them <3
Trick Concepts has "build your own" fans that you could buy, they're cheaper than the premade fans. I'd say that your only real option is just to buy some fire fans that you like. It seems pointless to spend $80 on practice fans and then another $100 or so on fire fans. You can also tape glow sticks on the fans until you're comfortable using real fire.
I would say that I'd just skip getting practice fans and buy some real fire fans. Seems like a waste of money to buy practice fans since I'm almost positive that you'll soon be itching to light up. If you do want to try to conserve wick life, you can cover most wicks with baby socks to keep them from getting abraded during practice. And as mentioned you can always attach glow necklaces or even bike spoke LEDs to your fans for some pizzazz until you feel comfortable lighting up.
As for choosing fans, there are two basic styles of fan dances, traditional and technical. Traditional style is more along the lines of belly dancing with more graceful flowing movements. Technical style adds spins , stalls and other moves to the mix.
Large fans (with 5 or more wicks) are better suited to traditional styles as the large size lends itself better to slow moves and the bigger fire looks better, but the large size somewhat limits the spinning moves. Smaller fans (usually 4 wicks) work better for technical moves, but also work for traditional dances. I sell FAR more small fans than large ones. The next thing to consider is grip style and spinning ring layout. This is kind of subjective on what feels good in YOUR hands, unfortunately this is hard to judge from pictures on the internet. Weight balance is another aspect that is hard to judge online. And if you plan on doing a lot of technical moves look for sturdy construction and wicks. If you know anyone with fans I'd suggest seeing if you can at least hold them to see how they feel in your hands.
From time to time I get some used fans or sell test models for cheap, but I don't have any at the moment. And even though this is a great opportunity for me to advertise my wares, I don't want to spam the boards :)
This is a good comment and you should feel good. Thank you for the information,
Hi! You're comment is super informative and I was hoping you could say a bit more about the different grip types.
I've been looking at the two lotus fans on HoP ( http://www.homeofpoi.com/shop/listItems/lotus%20fans ) because of the DIY option but I dont know how I feel about the bar in the center of the large handhold and the lack of ring in the medium (I know a welder and would try to get those changed).
I've seen so many different grips across the various websites with large holes and multiple finger rings, I really don't know how they affect the fan and which is best.
If it helps at all, I am a hooper and I'm looking to use the fans for more flowing dance moves and although I would like to incorporate some spins, I don't have much practice in teching.
Thanks for your comment above and for hopefully answering some of my questions!
Thanks for all the advice :-) I ended up buying some beautiful fire fans from home of poi, hopefully I'll love playing with them as much as I love watching!
Fire fans seem scary, and you can get a set of fire fans that is semi-cheap. Home of Poi has 'build your own' fire fan kits that are good. That's how I got my pair, Though one wick has broken off one fan since, I drop them a lot.
Buy fire fans. You don't have to burn them and you will get a feel for what you like.
Check these guys out: http://homeoffans.com/ Tutorials, the only place in the world (it seems) that sells glow fans too.
If I had to chose another fire fan, I'd get dragonfly fans (link below) because there's no chance they'll ever break. http://www.trickconcepts.com/Aluminum-Dragonfly-Fans-P1515C7.aspx
I bought a fire set and practiced, a lot! before lighting. It's definitely a different kind of prop but they make amazing patterns, and it's a great arm work out! Look up as much fire safety information as you can before lighting and take it easy your first time, even just holding and walking around with fire fans is enough to get you hooked to learn more :)
My first time picking up any flow toy was a pair of fire fans, and of course they were on fire! They're amazing, but can also be a bit scary. I am definitely a tech fan artist, because I feel that it really illuminates the fans, where as the traditional style seems to be focused on your dancing.
I personally used a 7 wick half circle fan with a 4" diameter ring in the center. They were heavy, and bigger than what most people used, but they were really impressive! Mine were home made, but I've heard great things about homeoffans.com.
One thing that I really want to stress is the rings. a 4" ring allows you to put your hand into the center, and makes many tech moves much more manageable. a 2" ring will put a lot of hurt on your fingers for any spins you do with them. My first pair had a 2" ring and a smaller ring above, and for my performances I would have to tape my hands up.