A crosspoint is the point where the flight path of a poi intersects itself. Playing with crosspoints is a way to observe, understand, stabilize, and interact with the poi. 3-beat weaves when performed randomly don't look like anything from the front, but by stabilizing the crosspoints it can become a beautiful helix. Crosspoints can also be used for spotting when turning and whirling in virtually any pattern. (It is easiest to work with crosspoints if you have light emitting poi!)
Steps for Learning
1) Cross your right poi in a figure eight pattern and try to steady the crosspoint. Pick a point in the distance and try to cross the poi exactly through that point.
2) As you get into a flow, notice how many ways you can move your hand to maintain the pattern:
-Leading with your palm as your hand crosses to the left, and then you knuckles as you cross back to the right.
-Tilting your knuckles to the left and right with the poi, palm up.
-Tilting your knuckles to the left and right with the poi, palm down.
-Holding the tether in your fingers, and see if you can draw the poi side to side with your wrist stable.
-Moving/flipping the wrist vs pulling the circle as a helix.
3) Raise and lower the cross point. Let it drift to the right and then the left.
4) Keep the cross point in the same place, but start moving your body around. First turn a little to the left, then a little to the right. Eventually you turn completely to the side walls, so that you are looking over your shoulder, or your far shoulder, at your crosspoint.
5) Stay with your body turned to the East Track, so you are looking down your left arm at your cross point. Try lifting your arm and cross point a little higher, a little lower, a little further, and a little closer. Eventually we will be lifting it right to the top of the head. Eventually you can raise it up over your head and down the other side, being sure to keep your planes straight with the tracks. Notice that there is a difficult moment where your brain has to “flip” it’s understanding of how the poi is flying as your orientation changes from one side to the other.
6) See how you can reach into the empty space above and below the cross point, either with your other hand or either leg. Start to really see the shape of the path of the poi. This will help you understand how you can interact with patterns.
7) Now keep the crosspoint right on the ceiling above you, and try to turn in a full circle.
Try to apply all this behind you and wrapped around your waist. Initially, most people have a hard time getting over their urge to use their front hemisphere motor and perceptual for everything, even moves behind them. This makes it difficult to perform gracefully with poi in the back hemisphere.
Helps you with
Developing the skills described above will greatly improve your ability to perform moves you already know by sharpening them, beginning to open up your range of motion, and allowing for smoother transition. Because having fine control of your crosspoints is helpful in every move that goes back and forth across your body, listing all of them here would be quite extensive.
Where to go next
To delve even deeper into crosspoints and the potential they hold for transitions, check out Da'Vinci's (Poi) Man.