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What Is Capoeira?

Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian martial art, created by enslaved Africans and hidden through dance and music. Capoeira is played as a game between two practitioners inside of a circle of spectators, other capoeira players, and a band of musicians.


This beautiful and strong martial art came to be in the mid-1500s, when enslaved Africans were torn from their homes and shipped to the newly discovered Americas. Under the watchful eye of the slave owner, capoeira appeared as a harmless dance with music. After the abolition of slavery in 1888, capoeira survived in the poorer neighborhoods (despite persecution from police) until its legalization in the 1930s.

Today, capoeira is celebrated and practiced around the world.

  • a way to learn and practice capoeira that promotes longevity and a lifelong practice 

  • use and mastery of capoeira's basic movements

  • developing intelligence over speed and force

  • emphasizing cooperation over competition

  • proper technique and control over violence–uncontrolled technique, physical contact and especially violence are not permitted

  • learning from the wisdom of the elder masters

  • accessible to people of all ages and abilities

  • building a supportive and inclusive community

  • celebrating freedom and diversity

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