There are many traditional and contemporary rhythms of the berimbau that exist, and each Capoeira school uses particular rhythms for their own training purposes. Though many of the same rhythms are used by different Capoeira schools, the names, rhythm speeds, and game styles of the rhythms vary by school. Common rhythms trained in Capoeira schools are Angola, Benguela/Banguela, Regional de Bimba (São Bento Grande de Bimba), and São Bento Grande de Angola. This article focuses on Benguela and Regional games as practiced by our Grupo (the roda is performed by Axé Capoeira Victoria, Canada led by Professor Testa):
The Benguela/Banguela game
The Benguela/Banguela game is a close, fluid game that focuses on communication between players. Players make an effort to fit movements together by consciously reacting to one another. The fluidity of movement demonstrated in the game is best described as a set of gears; as one gear turns, the other reacts, leading to harmonious movement. The bulk of movement in the game include fakes, ground acrobatics, and balança movements. The game is also very technical, focusing on completed movements that integrate skillful malicía.
The Regional Game
The objective of the Regional game is to perform quick golpes traumatizantes (traumatizing strikes) while reacting to the attacks of an opponent. It's important, however, that the harmony of the game is never lost to simple stand-up fighting. The game is generally played at a medium to fast pace and is marked by upright movements, take-downs, cunning sweeps and strong defenses. Acrobatic movements are not customary, but can be performed at a player's will, assuming he is prepared to risk a counter-attack.