April 10, 2018 12:45 AM

Cyr Wheel: How Does It Work?

The Cyr Wheel is a large ring that is used in circuses for acrobatic moves. It is named after its Canadian inventor, Daniel Cyr. Daniel first performed using the Cyr wheel in 2003 in Paris during the Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain (Circus of Tomorrow World Festival).


How it Works


First, one needs to choose a ring that is the right size. How will you know the right size for the ring? Well, make sure that you can stand inside the wheel and stretch your arms comfortably. The most recommended sizes are those that are 3 inches than you. If you are a fan of Dan Brown then you are aware of his classic image of the Vitruvian Man. When standing inside the ring, the acrobat should resemble the image of the Vitruvian Man.


Putting on loose clothes is highly recommended. Some acrobats are usually barefoot while others are in socks. It just narrows down to want one is more comfortable in especially when indoors. When outdoors, one should be in sneakers.


Another important thing to note is that the surface one is spinning on should not be slippery. When all the above are checked, the acrobat should get inside the ring and try getting their balance. Once this done, one stands up straight, extends their arms, and holds the wheel in front of their body and bends slightly forward.


Some basic steps to try when spinning are:


  • Skate start: this is where the acrobat places one foot on the wheel, pushes the ring with the other foot. Then they add the foot that pushed the wheel on the wheel. After this, they keep spinning.  


  • Wheel-to-toe start: this is when the acrobat starts rotating the wheel with their arms then steps on the wheel.


  • Roll-by start: with this one, the acrobat starts the spinning with their arms held in the 9 and 12 o’clock position. When in this position, they then twist their torso so that it can hold the wheel and spin it across.

Have you seen a Cyr wheel acrobat in action?

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