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My friend spins fire hoops and we're wondering why they don't blow out while she's spinning them, but do, when she blows them out one by one.

I don't imagine there's so much more CO2 (so much less O2) in our exhaled breaths that it would make a difference.

So it must have something to do with how the flame and air interact differently in each case.

Here's more information on what fire hoops burn on, from A Primer for First Time Fire Hoopers:

There are two fuels that are safe for you and your equipment while fire hooping. White Gas (Coleman’s fuel) and Pure or Extra-Pure Lamp Oil (never the citronella stuff). White Gas burns hotter and shorter. Lamp oil burns longer and less hot. You and your safety should both practice fueling, lighting, and extinguishing one wick with your duvetyne several times before your first burn until you’re comfortable with the process. The flame is extinguished by fully enclosing the wick in the blanket. Eliminate the oxygen to the wick, kill the flame.

The most common method for fueling wicks is called “dipping.” You pour the fuel into an empty paint can and dip each wick into the fuel. This is NOT my preferred method for fueling hoops. For one, you risk the fuel running down the spoke and onto the hoop (yes, where your hands will be later). Second, it requires “spinning off,” where you spin the hoop on your body to get rid of excess fuel. You do this so that you don’t send liquid flame shooting off the tip of your wick into a crowd or nearby greenery. But it also means that you’re pouring chemicals into the ground.

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Make your hand into a fist and move it around as fast as you can, then blow on it, where did you feel more "wind"?

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  • $\begingroup$ Huh. It's kind of hard to believe when something our body does is stronger than something done by what seems like a (simple) machine / lever type of thing. I think you're right though, that that's what it is. $\endgroup$ – Andrew Cheong Jul 19 '15 at 19:15

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