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The Peking Acrobats: Myth-Busters!

The Peking Acrobats

The Peking Acrobats are coming to Des Moines!  

Pushing the limits of human ability and defying gravity with contortion, flexibility, and control, there seems to be nothing The Peking Acrobats can’t do! You, your family, and your friends can see this impressive group take the stage on February 17 at 11am at the Des Moines Civic Center. You will be in awe of their amazing feats and show-stopping tricks! 

The Peking Acrobats have many unique abilities, and these abilities have contributed to perpetuated myths about contortionists and acrobats. Contortionism involves the dramatic bending and flexing of the human body, and is often part of acrobatics and circus acts. The unusual flexibility seen by contortionists can be jarring for viewers, so myths are created to ‘explain’ just how performers do it. Let’s get in to some myth-busting now! 

The Peking Acrobats

Myth #1: Contortionists apply snake oil to their joints or drink special elixirs to become flexible.

This myth was popular in the 19th century when contortionists were hired by medicine shows to display how their arthritis “medicines” worked. However, the flexibility of the contortionist was related to the contortionist's abilities, not the medicine! The Peking Acrobats do not use snake oil or magic potions, but they do eat very healthy foods because what they consume does have an effect on their abilities!

Myth #2: “Double-jointed” people have more joints than most people do.

Most everyone has the same number of joints, regardless of if a person is “double-jointed,” as this term refers to the appearance of a person who can bend further than a joint would typically allow a limb to bend!

Myth #3: Contortionists have to dislocate their joints when they bend unusually far. 

Most extreme bends can be achieved without dislocating the joint, and actual dislocations are rarely used in athletic contortion, as they make the joint more unstable and prone to injury. 

Myth #4: Contortionists can bend “bonelessly” in any direction. 

Contortionists create the illusion of having “boneless’ bodies by presenting skills that showcase their most flexible joints. Contortionists train, stretch, and exercise daily to be able to share tricks that require great flexibility!

Myth #5: You are either born a contortionist or you’re not. 

While possessing natural flexibility is certainly advantageous in becoming a contortionist, A Peking Acrobat is not born, but is instead, nurtured. Through persistent training, muscle flexibility can be acquired oftentimes. Many families also send their children to special schools devoted to teachings of the arts. 

The Peking Acrobats trick

Not only do The Peking Acrobats bring so much talent in a unique art form, but they bring the opportunity to view a rich and ancient folk-art tradition. The Peking Acrobats redefine audience perceptions of Chinese acrobatics, and entertain crowds all around.  

Secure your tickets today to see a Wellmark Family Series show that will certainly wow the entire family. Tickets start at $10; go get yours today!

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