Vision and Values
Here at Fire & Flow NZ, we have a vision to become the heart of all things fire and flow in Aotearoa New Zealand.
We believe that every flow artist, from beginner right through to master, deserves access to high quality props.
We believe that all forms of flow arts are legitimate in their own right and that everyone has the right to practice in their own way and follow their own interests.
We also believe in the power of community, which is why we strive to support other prop makers and the flow community in Aotearoa through collaboration and sharing of knowledge, resources, and information.
Play, Movement, and Exploration
We believe in the power of play. Getting lost in the moment, having fun, trying things out, and testing your limits - not for money or accolades but simply for the pure enjoyment of doing - is the state of mind we all want to be in as often as possible! Flow arts is a vehicle for all sorts of personal development, progression, training and discipline, and can lead to many other great things, but central to all of this is joy. In the end, we want people to find something they love doing, and then go out and enjoy doing it.
Our desire to make flow arts accessible to everyone stems from a desire to share flow arts with the wider community. We know just how great we feel when we play and spin, and we want to share that feeling with as many people as possible. By inspiring people to take up flow arts, we are hoping to encourage a greater sense of belonging and well-being within communities throughout New Zealand.
We truly believe that flow arts should be accessible for everyone, regardless of age, gender, ability, ethnicity, sexuality, background or status. If you want to play, move and explore, then you should have the opportunity to do so! By making flow arts accessible to everyone, we hope to encourage skill sharing, inspire creativity, and foster new friendships with and among other flow artists.
Inclusion isn’t just about allowing others to join in – it’s about actively encouraging them to join in and providing an environment where they feel safe to do so. It’s about working together to build each other up and learning from one another. Instead of dismissing someone who does something differently, ask WHY. This promotes skill sharing and never-ending improvement.
Support, Encourage, Respect
We strive to support the flow community of Aotearoa in any way possible. This includes working with local crafters and seeing competition in business as a way to inspire each other to be better, not a race to the bottom to see who can make the most profit by cutting corners.
Knowledge is an extremely valuable resource, one that we believe should be freely accessible to everyone. We want to support other flow artists, both new and experienced, by sharing our knowledge and educational resources to ensure everyone can spin safely and become the best they can be.
We respect other flow artists, and their choices about where, when, and how they practice-- with fire or LED or without, for performance or not, socially or in isolation. No prop, movement, style, or medium is superior or inferior to any other, nor is one aspect of flow art necessarily a step towards another. It’s all legitimate in its own right. Everyone is at a different point on their own journey, and also on their own path, and will be inspired and challenged by different things-- and that’s great!
We are truly fortunate to call Aotearoa home. We not only have access to some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, but we also have the privilege of working alongside and learning from tangata whenua. As a western-dominated society we see through a western way of thinking, and the things that are truly important – our planet and the people on it – often get overlooked.
By embracing the values we learn from Te Ao Māori, we are seeking to bring those truly important aspects of life to the forefront of what we do. We understand the importance of caring for our planet and aim to employ environmentally ethical and sustainable practices in all we do. From making use of recycled materials to encouraging the use of less harmful fuels, every little bit makes a difference.
We acknowledge, specifically, the long history and kaupapa of poi, mau rākau, and taiaha that have been practiced here for generations, and extend our heartfelt gratitude to all the peoples of the world who have contributed to the development of the props and movement disciplines we employ today.
Health and Well-being
We believe in using flow arts to promote well-being, and that mental health is an indispensable part of that picture. A healthy mind and body lead to a happy, healthy life, and we believe that flow arts are a great way to foster all three. Not only are flow arts heaps of fun, they also offer countless physical and psychological benefits, no matter your age or skill level.
Prop manipulation helps to develop muscle control and body awareness. The continuous movement of our bodies when we spin leads to increased flexibility and increased fitness – this means more energy too! Our motor skills benefit from flow arts as our coordination, balance and dexterity all get a workout when we interact with our props.
Flow arts encourages patience, persistence and determination – the desire to learn new things can drive us to put in the hard work of practice in a wonderfully natural way. Unlike formal sports there is no competitive aspect in flow, as we are not seeking to be better than anyone else but only to improve our own abilities and pursue a personal best, and perhaps encourage those around us to do the same. Flow leads to increased confidence and self-esteem, which drives us to keep exploring and keep asking – what else can I achieve?
Safety and Quality
When it comes to flow arts-- and fire spinning especially-- there’s no substitute for a quality prop that you know will be safe to use. A single bad experience can make or break the desire to keep spinning and we want you to keep spinning. We aim to provide all flow artists with access to high quality props and accurate safety information – including what to look for when selecting your new prop, and how to properly maintain your equipment, with extra attention given to fire safety given the inherent risk.
Open to Learning
We don’t claim to know everything and we never will. Learning is a journey and we have a strong desire to continuously improve the way we do things - even when that means giving up on things we really believed in before we knew better, or admitting that we need to make big changes. A lot of work goes into developing techniques and processes, so it is a daunting challenge for an organisation to recognise and acknowledge when those things need to change - so, we pledge to do our best to be open-minded when it comes to feedback and new knowledge.
We want to be the best version of Fire & Flow NZ we can be, so we can provide you with cutting-edge information, resources and equipment. See something we could improve on? Let us know!