Due to recent concerns over CVOID-19 physical class is temporarily suspended.
Mestra Luar do Sertao is leading our online capoeira academy. Please message us for information on how to participate.
"Capoeira is a blend of martial arts, dance, self defense, gymnastics and music. It is a Brazilian art form that is over 400 years old. For many of us capoeiristas, like myself, capoeira is a way of life."
- Mestre Marcelo Caveirinha -
My name is Fabian Duarte, my Capoeira name is Montanha. Mestre Canguru explained that I form friendships that are strong like mountains and this is why he baptized me with the name: Montanha.
I have trained capoeira since October 2002 shortly after finishing college. I saw Mestre Canguru teaching a group of Capoeira Mandinga students and it quickly caught my interest. From there, capoeira has been a major part of my life. I've trained with many Mestres who have guided me through the years. Mestre Canguru, my capoeira father, Mestra Luar do Sertão, Mestre Penteado, Mestre Paulo Batuta, Mestre Espirro Mirim and my current mentor - Mestre Marcelo Caveirinha.
To me, Capoeira roots and origins define the traditions and movements that each capoeirista must learn in addition golpes and esquivas. In its essence, this knowledge is brought to fruition in the Roda.
We train vigorously to improve skill, physical endurance, mental strength, and self-expression. We practice songs and percussion instruments, including the berimbau, pandeiro, atabaque, and the agogo, which are used in the roda (the Portuguese word for circle, and where the game of capoeira is played). We are educated in the history, traditions, customs, and etiquette of Capoeira. Throughout the year, in addition to our routine training, we host special workshops in Capoeira, dance and percussion, attend special events throughout the states and abroad, and put on shows throughout the community.
Individuals take on leadership roles as each has something unique to contribute to the work of our group. Most importantly, we work as a team supporting each other, and for many, Capoeira Mandinga has even become like an extended family.
What is Capoeira?
Capoeira (pronounced kah-poo-EH-ra) is a martial art form developed in Brazil by African slaves. It involves self defense, combat, dance-like expression, acrobatics, and music. Forbidden to practice martial arts, the slaves disguised it from their masters as a dance. It became a source of freedom from slavery and mental oppression. Today it is practiced worldwide by men, women, and children.
Established in the 16th century
The game of Capoeira is played, rather than fought, in a roda (pronounced ‘ho-da’), the Portuguese word for a circle. At the foot of the roda stands the bateria, or percussion ensemble, which accompanies the call and response songs sung in Portuguese. The players, called capoeiristas, take turns entering the circle two at a time to engage in a physical dialogue of attack and defense.
Players move according to the rhythm of the berimbau, the main instrument, which directs how fast, slow, expressive, playful, or intense the game will be. Players attack and defend, combining round and straight kicks, ducks, sweeps, take-downs, acrobatics, and dance-like esthetics, all the while maintaining flow and rhythm. Players aim to show the potential harm of movements, exercising control rather than following through. The ultimate goal is to trick or deceive, catching the opponent in a position that he/she cannot get out of.