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How to Do the Au in Capoeira

Learn how to do the au from Capoeira experts Tiba Vieira and Mestre Jelon Vieira in this Howcast video.


Au, it's the cartwheel in capoeira. So, usually in capoeira you go upside- down, and usually the au is not just to show that you have the ability to really go upside-down, go on your hands. Of course, you know, when you do au, you demonstrate that you have balance on your hands, but you have to be very careful doing the au. When you do the au, you can get into all the movements, you can get into doing kicks, so I'm going to demonstrate how to do the au.

Just from the ginga position, we start over here, always dart back and forth, maintain a good balance on your feet, and from there, looking straight at your partner, reach out and finish back. And from there, you can get back to the ginga. With au, you should be able to do au to both sides, right there, getting your arm up, out there.

Now, when you step, make sure you ground, you're stepping firm, cover your face. Now, don't place your hand right here. Reach as far as you can. So, reach it out, reeling the momentum, all the way back, okay, and then back to ginga. Now, I'm going to step and go au, finish back, right there, and step, go un, dos, tres, finish, and that was that one. When you do the au, it's a matter of really keeping good balance on your hands. You learn how to use your core muscles [actually], but you don't wanna be so tense, to the point where you're blocking yourself from moving. This is about building momentum, so the ginga is what really gives you all the momentum to do the au. All the kicks, all the full movements, and as you see here, I've got myself into the ginga, so, loosen up a little bit, going back and forth, and I do stop here.

So, I'm going to step parallel. Step firm, look straight ahead at your partner. Okay, now, as you're moving your upper body across, avoid placing your hands too close to your feet, because that won't give you enough rotation, so reach as far as you can, and then as you reach as far as you can, automatically, you know, your legs will move over, will rotate over with you. So, here, reach up, and back, into the ginga, of course, you can finish also into another movement.

I'll go back into the ginga, right there, back and forth. Once again, I'm going to start right there, always on the ball of your foot. Make sure your weight on the ginga is spread evenly, you step parallel, knees bent, look straight across, reach as far as you can. Okay, cover your face as you move across, up there, and finish all the way back, and then from there back to ginga, back and forth, and you go, one, two, and all the way back. And, that's the au.

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