Capoeira classes happening Tuesday, Wednesdays and Saturdays at the Fernwood Community Centre, classes for all ages

›› Tracey Murphy

Capoeira is a martial art that combines ­elements of fight, acrobatics, music, dance and ritual. Capoeira was created nearly 500 years ago in Brazil by African people taken from their homes and kept in slavery. They started inventing fighting techniques for self-defense. It is known by quick and ­complex moves, using mainly power, speed, and leverage for a wide variety of kicks, spins, and acrobatics. Diverse styles and traditions add to this complex art form. Capoeira welcomes all students, with a wide range of abilities and backgrounds. The only requirements are an attitude of respect and a desire to learn.

capoeira-fernwood-community-centre-2016-01For Mestre Maurão, founder of Capoeira Mandinga, Capoeira is a complex to define but in essence, is a transformative and empowering art form. The discovery and practice of Capoeira encourages ­individuals to participate in their physical, moral and social development, and the desire to actively progress with dignity.

I have practiced Capoeira for eight years. During that time, I lived in Sao Paulo and trained with Mestre Maurão. The ­experience of training with under-privileged children at the Cruz Da Malta Community Centre was life changing. I witnessed the potential of Capoeira to support social justice, ­individually and in community.

I have received permission from ­Mestre Maurão to teach classes at Fernwood. I have over twenty years’ experience working with children, youth and adults in ­recreation, education and supportive therapeutic ­environments. Our long term goal is to ­create a strong and vibrant Capoeira ­community, have Mestre Maurão visit ­Canada and bring a Brazilian instructor from Capoeira ­Mandinga to teach in Victoria.

Capoeira is the very best mix of play and discipline. It promises an increase in ­spatial awareness and physical abilities. Plus, ­creative outbursts are promised!