Diabolo is made of bamboo and named after its hollowness. It is commonly called "Maraca" or named as "Devil on two sticks" in the south of the lower reaches of Yangtze River. "Playing Diabolo" is a Chinese folk recreational activity prevalent in many regions in China. In North China, people, especially kids will play diabolo during the Spring Festival and other festivals, using diversified tricks. After being improved, such activity was endowed with the nature of athletics and has become a traditional acrobatic item.
Diabolo has a long history in China. It is testified by the cultural relics unearthed from the Ming Tombs that Diabolo has been spread among the folk for over 600 years.
Diabolo is of disk shape, with a wooden axis in it. It is dragged and wobbled by strings tied to bamboo sticks and winded to the wooden axis. Diabolo is classified into two types: single wheel (one end of the wooden axis is fitted with a disk) and double wheel (both ends of the wooden axis are fitted with disks). There are rugged openings scattered around the disk, with a large opening as the undertone hole and other minor ones as alt holes. They will make loud and sonorous sound simultaneously when dragging and wobbling diabolo. Playing diabolo can be evolved into lots of stunts, of which the stunt "Ants Climbing Trees" is performed in this way: with one end of a long cord tied to treetop and the other held by a person in hand, another person will wobble a diabolo and swiftly fling the rotating diabolo onto the long cord. At the same time, the person who is holding the cord will haul the rope to wobble the diabolo into the air 50-60m above the ground. When the diabolo is falling down, the person who just wobbled it will take hold of it steadily, which presents a marvelous spectacle.
Playing diabolo had developed into a popular acrobatic repertoire by the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911A.D.). On the basis of the original tricks of playing diabolo, acrobatic actors had created a great deal of new tricks and stunts. For instance, they could play teapot lids, small vases and other utensils besides diabolo.
Playing diabolo is a sport item which is achieved by crafty cooperation of limbs. All arthrosises of the entire body will make motions to different extent when both hands are holding the stick and wobbling diabolo to perform various tricks. For this reason, playing diabolo is a combination of sport with game. It can offer you joyance other than helping to build up your body as long as the quantity of sport is reasonable.