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Guinness world records for juggling...
I recently heard that for (some/all?) marathon-style events, GWR permits (accumulating) breaks every hour — for example, a 5-minute break every hour. Since the 3- and 4-ball endurance world records were both awarded by GWR, I was wondering whether anyone knew whether this was also the case for the juggling records?
Call me a purist, but it seems that, as impressive as juggling for 12 hours, with only short breaks in, is — it wouldn't be fair to strictly count time after taking breaks, and it'd be nice to know if this was the case for those records. Anyone know, or have any thoughts?
I'd like to know that as well, I always wondered how a normal human being deals with basic human commodity for 12 hours while juggling!
It's been suggested that an adult diaper might be helpful. Also drinking from a straw and being fed carefully.
Once you sign up for doing an actual entry, you get an email including aaalll of the specifications and rules regarding that particular entry (if one has been set before). So I recommend pretending you're going to set something.
I've done so ages ago for a record, wasn't too complicated.
Ah, that's good advice, thank you! I just sent a general enquiry a moment ago, but if they can't give me the information, I shall do that! I'll report back here when I know more.
Their general enquiry reply was a lot of auto-generated nonsense, so I've submitted a record attempt form. Let's see where that goes...
Doesn't answer your questions, but here's an interview with the record holder that was just published: https://www.juggle.org/interview-david-slick/
From the interview: "No breaks allowed and the throwing must alternate hands."
And then in the promo video posted in the article there is a news caption:
"David Slick goes 12 hours without eating, drinking or bathroom break"
That's much more detailed than anything I managed to find previously, thanks! That seems to support a continuous 12-hour record, which is comforting! (Especially the quotes about training for a long time to be able to do that.)
By "must alternate hands", does that mean you can't set records for synchronous patterns? Or would it still be alright since both hands are used? What about siteswaps with a "0" where you end up throwing with the same hand twice?
I guess for this particular record they want you to throw a cascade, and "must alternate hands" was the way Guinness describes the cascade. Of course one can try and be creative with the rules, but first we must consult the full rule document which Varkor might receive soon.
ULTIMATE JUGGLING TRICKS CHALLENGE # 1 – BALLS
The IJA is running a (simplifying pretty heavily here) single round of global JUGGLE. Two parts: the first to set tricks/patterns jugglers think others may not be able to do, and the second for everyone to try to do those tricks/patterns. For this round, only toss juggling with balls is allowed (no endurances). Full rules here: https://www.juggle.org/ultimate-juggling-tricks-challenge-1-balls/
Luke made the very interesting prediction that every trick/pattern will be replicated by at least one other juggler. I'm very interested in this event, and to see if he's right! I'm assuming that there will be about a month allowed to try to replicate others' tricks, but I don't think that's been announced.
Two questions I'm curious about:
Do you think Luke's prediction will hold? If not, which patterns (and by whom) do you think will stand?
Do you like this event?
I would love to see more juggling challenges, so thank you David for organizing this one!
I've suggested a couple to juggleshare, and since he seems to have disappeared I might run some myself at some point.
This particular challenge, I'm not sure about yet. For one, I might not want to encourage other jugglers to try out my coolest hardest most original tricks. Secondly I think that the incentive to try and beat a trick is relatively low. I might even try a trick that I like, manage to do it, but there is little to gain except for some exposure to then record it on camera. I don't mean that there should be better prizes or something like that, I believe that submitting to a challenge should be inherently interesting. But sure, if people feel like there is a big honor in submitting, it will work!
I do hope that there will be many participants, and I do hope this event sparks of more challenges in the future.
Here is the list of challenges I suggested earlier, anyone is free to take from these directly or as inspiration of course!
"Secondly I think that the incentive to try and beat a trick is relatively low."
While true, if there are any entries near my bailiwick, I'm going after them!
Out of my repertoire of patterns that I feel would be hard to replicate...I feel like they're all poking Haavard into participating. I haven't thought of any that I don't think he could do pretty quickly.
Alex Barron could just flash 13 balls (not too difficult for him) and no-one else would replicate it. There are others who can do things that no-one else is close to (long runs of 7 balls backcrosses for example). The question is if any of those people will enter.
Considering endurances are off limits, what are some other tricks/patterns you think are unique to certain jugglers?
I had forgotten that endurance is off limits. However, if Ty Tojo did something like a 7 up from backcrosses that would probably do it. Another off the top of my head would be one of Ofek's crazy multi pirouettes with 7 balls. Another possible way to go about this challenge would be to memorise and juggle a long prime siteswap for one cycle, as probably no-one else would bother to try.
Submitted. In the process, twice I landed my trick without the camera working (once I didn't start it properly by mistake, and once it ran out of memory 30 seconds before I landed it), and in submitting I discovered to my shame that what I thought was an 8 turned out to be a 7 :/ Interested to see if there are any interesting tricks submitted!
Oo, I'm excited to see what you've done!
I was all psyched to get 32 catches of my trick (four rounds)...then I got sick. 16 catches it is (though I got one take of 24 catches).
Disappointed because I think there's a real plateau after 16 catches that I'd like people to struggle with!
"Luke made the very interesting prediction that every trick/pattern will be replicated by at least one other juggler. I'm very interested in this event, and to see if he's right!"
The reason I think all these tricks will be replicated is that I have history in copying other people's tricks. Check out this project:
There were a few tricks that defeated me, a few that I only ever intended to joke-copy, and a few where I used video editing tricks. But otherwise I managed to copy many, many tricks which I presumed would be beyond me. For example, Alex Barron doing 999333 with the second 3 behind the head? I'd never tried anything like that before! And I got it after about 30 minutes trying. Brook and I got the 8 club double pirouette in one juggling session, even though I'd never done that kind of thing while passing. Loads of stuff I tried for the first time... and usually got what I wanted. On top of that I had to act like the jugglers too.
And I'm not even that good of a juggler compared to many other jugglers who could attempt to copy the tricks of others.
Oh, I'm very aware of this project, it is one of my favourite juggling projects ever done! The suspense, the execution...that was a masterpiece of top 40.
I wonder if people are going to pull out things deeper in their niches for this competition than they usually do. That's what I tried to do for it, anyway. I'm excited to see what was submitted, and who can replicate what.
What ever happened to ... ?
So, I found myself thinking about Jouni Temonen, a fabulous juggler from Finland who I met maybe a dozen or so years ago, and he's one of those really great jugglers who seems to have dropped completely off the radar. And I started wondering whether it's because he's doing better, more professional things, or perhaps he's got a proper job/life/baby or whatever and doesn't really inhabit the juggling world so much any more.
And then that got me thinking about Joost Dessing, and wondering what on earth he's up to now. And the more you think about it, the more gifted talents you will remember that seem to have disappeared off the scene for one reason or another.
So who do you recall, who was infuriatingly talented but has since moved on with their lives?
Maybe Michael Falkov. One of the best 3b jugglers ever (IMO, top 3, arguably the very top), but is super off-grid. Not sure if he's juggled in the last ~2 years.
Reuben Cohn-Gordon, Arron Gregg & Anthony Gatto (obviously!) are the names who immediately spring to my mind.
Similarly, is it my imagination or is the 'lifetime' of a juggler getting shorter? For example I feel that the more recent BYJotY competitors have not remained as visible in the scene as the earlier competitors (Norbi, Tiff, Tom Derrick, Arron Sparks, Jon Udry, Matt Pang etc.). Has the increased average skill level & easier access to the 'next big thing' made staying in the community's consciousness harder? Has the top level of juggling reached the point where physical limits are being hit & injury is forcing people out sooner?
Oof, I definitely miss Reuben Cohn-Gordon. I had a brief chat with him May 2014 when I was getting into squeeze catches. At that point he implied that he was still juggling some. Maybe there's hope.
It's an interesting point about youngins not staying on the scene as long these days. I got curious about IJA juniors winners...and I wish I knew if more of them still juggled. Below are some of the winners and whether or not they still juggle (to my knowledge)
Komei Aoki - Yes
Takashi Kikyo - Yes
Tony Pezzo - YES
Billy Watson - ?
Nate Martin - ?
Teruki Okamoto - I think so
Ben Hestness - ?
David Ferman - ?
Jack Levy - ?
Noah Malone - Yes
David Ferman - ?
Lauge Benjaminsen - Yes
David Ferman - ?
Jack Denger - ? (stopped making videos)
Patrick Fraser - Pretty much stopped
Kellin Quinn - YES
Jack Denger - ?
Ashley Ellis - ?
Ashley Ellis - ?
It seems to me that the number of people entering BYJOTY has reduced and that the average skill level is also less. Whether this is because the people attending BJC are getting older (and hence less youngsters are around to compete) or the general skill level is higher and so the good youngsters don't stand out so much or some other reason I couldn't say. Still at least a few of the recent winners are still very much on the scene and in the community consciousness. It was only about 4 years ago that Arthur Hyam won.
As well as other things in life getting in the way, one thing I've noticed based mainly on myself and is that as you get older you tend to seek praise from others less. This is why we make juggling videos of ourselves. As I get older I'm juggling just as much but making far fewer videos. People therefore think I've stopped juggling. I was recently asked to film a section for a video about people who've stopped juggling!
What Joost is up to is very easy to find [he is based in Queen's in Belfast]. His research seems to have veered towards football rather than juggling (probably related to sources of funding).
So it’s the start of 2018 – Happy New Year jugglers!
The start of a new year is always a time to reflect on your life and where you want it to go… or to just completely ignore that and think about juggling, which is what I’ve opted to do:
So I’ve had lots of interesting conversations about how people practice juggling, when they started and how quickly they learnt certain tricks. One topic which often comes up is how Anthony Gatto practices. Obvious he’s pretty decent at juggling, so must have been doing something right when he practiced. I decided to try and emulate his practice.
DISCLAIMER: I think Anthony Gatto has a strong claim to the title of ‘best juggler of all time’ and I in no way think I will ever be anywhere near as good as him. I respect his ability immensely and if I say anything like ‘obviously he’s pretty decent at juggling’ like in the line above, I’m deliberately understating things for comic effect. Hopefully this explanation didn’t spoil that effect too much, but I would hate people to think that I don’t respect his ability or that I’m trying to compare myself to him in any way. I just want to get better at juggling, and tell a few jokes. I also don’t think I’m a particularly good solo juggler either, so any statements I make to the contrary are also jokes.
END OF DISCLAIMER.
After reading http://www.juggling.org/help/essays/gatto.html and watching some of https://youtu.be/gtsaTMdKVTM I think these are the key things I’ve learnt about how he practices:
1) Warm up with some gentle balance exercises.
2) Practice for one hour, but every day!
3) Work on each trick for no more than 2-3 minutes, take regular breaks.
4) Have a list of about 20 tricks you are working on, if you aren’t enjoying one, swap it out for another one.
I think the idea of this is you make slow progress on lots of tricks at once, and if you do this every day for 20 years you end up being the best juggler of all time or something. Sounds like a plan- anyone want to book 43 year old Cameron for a performance, he’s going to be awesome? (See disclaimer if you think I’m being arrogant…)
This is very different to how I practice. Sometimes I’m super motivated about one trick and work on just that for a whole session, sometimes I rattle through tricks more quickly. Sometimes I have seen someone do something at a convention which I want to try. Sometimes I have a new idea and want to try and come up with some tricks of my own. Sometimes I’m driving to Austria and don’t practice for a day. The point is, it varies- I don’t have a systematic juggling practice routine. I’ve got my juggling to a level I am proud of but I’m not the best of all time like Anthony… probably only like the 7th best of all time or something (see disclaimer).
I wonder how much better I would get if I started practicing like Anthony? That’s what I plan to find out over the next month or so, maybe with a few days off when I’m skiing/moving to Germany. Who knows, I’ll do it when I can though (I know this already doesn’t really fit with what he does given he did it every day but you know I’m doing my best…).
Right, so I’ll warm up with some balance stuff, cycle through tricks really quickly (I think I’ll have a timer running to keep me disciplined) now all I need is a list of 20 or so tricks:
Balance warm up:
Turn round, kneel down, stand up sit down stand up, clap behind balance, do Macarena etc with club in both nose, chin and forehead balance (2 minutes)
3 balls, 441, 4ball sync and async, 5 balls all with balance. Maybe flash 6. (5 minutes)
Ok, now I’m warm ish, maybe mills is also a good warm up for the arm? I want to work on mills anyways so let’s put some of that in:
3 balls, 441, 531 (2 minutes)
4 balls, run, then 531 throwing 5 as under arm and as over arm. Kick up 3 to 4 (3-4 minutes)
5 balls, go for runs, try kick up 4 to 5 (3-4) minutes
I really want to get 5 ball mills looking nice it’s such a cool trick, seems weird only working on it 3-4 minutes but hey, let’s give it a go.
3 balls, 3 ups including linked 3 ups and 2 stage 720s (3-4 minutes)
4 balls, 4 ups out of both hands, 2 stage 720 out of sync? (3-4 minutes)
5 balls, 3 ups starting out of both hands, try and get 2 linked (3 minutes)
5 balls, try and land a 5 up out of both hands (3 minutes)
5 balls, 3 ups out of (6x,4)* ? (3 minutes)
I wonder if I’ll find the pirouette section tiring? Maybe I’ll switch this to being at the end after I try it tomorrow. What am I on now? 33 minutes or so, wow, that’s half my practice gone! Ok better get on with it:
5 ball siteswaps:
744 (1 minute)
645 (1 minute)
633 (1 minute)
94444 (1 minute)
97531 (2 minutes)
(8x,4)(4,4) out of (6x,4)* (2 minutes)
753 (1 minute)
Man that’s another 11 minutes gone, how did Anthony make this work? All I’ve done is balls. Crazy he was efficient enough using this practice to get at least as good as I am at all three props, if not better… (disclaimer).
6 ball practice:
3 in one hand, each way (1 minute)
One handed siteswaps with 3 balls like 432 and 42 each hand (2 minutes)
66661 (1 minute)
Run 6 async (2 minutes)
Run 6 sync (2 minutes)
Transition between sync and async (2 minutes)
Kick up 5 to 6 (1 minute)
Man I’m running out of time fast:
5 ball warm up, continuous 3 ups without spinning. 771. (2 minutes)
Try and get some runs of 7 balls (3 minutes)
It seems mad only trying 7 balls for that short an amount of time- I’m used to practicing it in half an hour stretches. I wonder if this will really help me improve?
5 ball half shower, throwing the odd high throw as a back cross (2 minutes)
6 ball half shower (2 minutes)
Man, that’s over an hour! This is insane, I have some other 3 ball tricks which I would love to get solid for an act in the future, I haven’t done any contortionist stuff, I haven’t practiced any of my shower tricks. There’s so many more ball tricks I can think of I want to work on and just as many club and ring tricks… I guess I’ll have to gradually change what is in my practice over the next 20 years so that I master clubs and rings too. Oh and head bounce. Also might take up cigar boxes. Should probably do some passing at some point too… hmmm.
I’m planning on trying this tomorrow after I’ve done some tutoring, if anyone has any feedback/suggestions of things to add or take out I would love to hear it.
I’ll post an update with how I found the practice tomorrow, and maybe again after 5 days or a week or something. Will definitely post again in 20 years when I’m the best of all time (disclaimer). Hopefully if you've read this far that last disclaimer was unnecessary. Bye x
I always wonder how much this differs from his practice when he started out. This routine of his was perhaps built more to help him maintain the level he had, it could be different to the training he did when he was actively learning new skills!
So if you follow the link from the post (http://www.juggling.org/help/essays/gatto.html) it describes how he tried juggling 4 clubs for the first time. Very different from my experience of learning 4 clubs- I remember putting in lots of hours and ending up with fairly battered forearms. It seems crazy to me that anyone can learn new tricks by spending such a short amount of time on them but I guess the key is doing it every single day. I guess the fact it seems crazy is why I want to try it for myself and see if it works for me :)
Obviously I can't know for certain but as far as I can tell this really is how he learnt new tricks as well as just maintaining ones he could do already.
https://www.juggle.org/anthony-gatto-interview-on-practicing/ the last question:
eJuggle: How has your practice style changed over the years?
Gatto: It has not altered too much. I follow the same structure as I used when I was ten. What I do now more than ever is listen to my body and do not force things to happen.
I used an app called "action timer" for when I had to do a bunch of physio. Basically put in the length of time for each activity, the title and hit the go button. It will tell you what to do when (including rests). If you plan to do the same thing week in week out it might be a good way of getting consistency. I'm sure there are a whole bunch of similar apps which might fit your need if you don't like that one.
I have been using an app I created to structure my juggling training and collect juggling data. The Android app is called Routine Builder. It is available free in the Play store, and by email. Check out my training logs to see what the app can do.
Lets not forget that he also had a coach. Someone who watches closely from a different perspective and gives good feedback is invaluable. It is perhaps what allowed him to get so much out of such short sessions. The question is if the same practice structure is optimal for a juggler without a coach.
Very true, I guess what I'm really testing is whether this 2-3 minutes per trick style of practice works better for me than my normal fewer tricks for a longer amount of time style. It's definitely different from what he did in a number of ways.
A while ago I was working on consistency of patterns. I made a recording of myself saying the name of a pattern I wanted to work on, then put in silence so the total track length was 30 seconds. I think I had something like 6 different tricks, so I duplicated each track 9 times to give me a total of a half hour of audio. I made this a playlist, hit shuffle, and BAM! I practiced in a very focused way for 30 minutes.
I did make a lot of progress during this time, but probably similar progress to when I practiced for the same amount of time by myself without such a rigid structure. Hard to tell.
 - For if you're having trouble understanding what I'm talking about, the session would sound like this:
"Around the head shower, right hand" [~30 seconds of silence]
"Blind behind the head" [~30 seconds of silence]
etc. etc. for 30 minutes.
As far as I understand your routine is a random circuit training, because you 'hit shuffle'.
I think that most people train in a linear way, one trick after another for a certain amount of time in a training session. I like the idea of a circuit training and for some tricks I have made good experience with something like A-B-C-D-A-B-C-D ... or A-B-C-D-B-C-E ... after a warmup and with short breaks in between. The letters are representing different tricks. At the end of a session I have repeated some tricks 2 or 3 times. 2-10 minutes per trick works well for me.
A glossary of juggling terminology - does such a thing exist?
In this subthread over on Reddit someone has asked for a glossary of modern juggling, and to my surprise I realised that I'm not sure such a thing exists, not an authoritative one anyway. Can any Edgizens prove me wrong please? Or suggest some good places for a curious Redditor to start looking? David Cain do you perhaps have some suggestions?
I think it was our God Emperor who created this one. Seems quite thorough.
Although I would question "Backdrop"; to me that is what is behind you - in terms of filming or performing (so, do your props contrast sufficiently with the backdrop or do they blend in?) [I would definitely include that as an alternative meaning]
Otherwise, its a pretty good start on a juggling glossary, it maybe requiring a bit of updating in terms of references to people (perhaps, to make it a bit more timeless, I would omit living people from the glossary)
Yeah, I couldn't find anything comprehensive when I looked either, which was what prompted me to compile that page.
It's been a while since I've added anything to that page, I think the last addition was buugeng.
I have added the extra definition for backdrop. I've also removed most of the living jugglers from view. I've left in those who I feel are more famous for a contribution they have made to juggling culture rather than for who they are.
New suggestions are always welcome. Any glaring ommissions from the past few years that I should include?
Both terms added, & inverse too which is related. Suggestions for less clunkily worded definitions also welcome!
"Combat: US term for Gladiators" should be "Gladiators: the British term for combat".
Yeah, I suppose you are right, it does seem to be a purely British term now. I wonder when that changed? I clearly remember it being announced as gladiators during the games at the EJC in 2002.
& is it a 3 club specific thing? I don't think I've ever heard the term 'unicycle combat' for example.
Gladiators is more of a generic term for "the last person doing this prop/skill with contact between participants allowed" so unicycle gladiators is usually still a thing. Also hoop gladiators or ball-on-head gladiators.
Combat is for three clubs and three balls.
practise versus ``talent´´
(no matter which level you're on - just started or world champion ..)
How much do you think that all your skills are (to which part) a result of practise or hard ``work´´, perseverance, or else
(to which part) did they ``come to you´´ by a natural preference for juggling (or object manipulation or artistry oror) or by a natural predisposition or a love for juggling making learning easier (than e.g. for the average juggler, or e.g. than learning another skill or art of motion or sportive activity)?
A few aspects helping to answer:
Even Gatto said sth like, there's no such thing talent on his level or for him - it was all hard hard work.
Think of what you can't do even though you think you should.
Was your decision or how you got to juggling totally intrinsic (=absolutely "yours" and the only thing to do, ``necessary´´ in a way) or could it just aswell have been something else, another hobby or activity.
Do you see yourself improving and learning much faster than others (that's the point, not learning easy stuff fast only).
Do others admire the speed you improve or learn (while you yourself might not have noticed).
And a question that I'm interested in:
Do you think or have you experienced a hidden talent waking up after already having juggled for a good while? Do you think that's possible to ``wake up the natural inside you´´?
I myself am somewhere between 2 and 3, but sill blundering a real lot when not yet warmed up or when not concentrating, also failing over long phases, makes me say "2", even though I hope for it to become easier, maybe the natural skill inside waking up, some day when I've reached my goals and then not having to so much do at the limit anymore. I don't think I'd have gotten where I am without the inner decision to dedicate to the 7b cascade, which is maybe rather a preference than ``natural talent´´, who knows.
You're asking multiple questions at once, which makes it hard to answer correctly...
I think I have some but little natural talent in learning object manipulation skills. However I am extremely predisposed to love juggling which makes it incredibly easy to spend countless hours on practice. So effectively my natural affection for juggling makes me a good juggler?
Yes, [>>"multiple wording"<<], wanted to include a wide range of viewpoints for "talent\\not talent".
Okay, that makes it a bit difficult ("little natural talent, but love for juggling making practise easy"),
but, as the question is scaled along "talent vs. practise", I'd say, your description says, that your love for juggling sort of enables or helps you to make up for little natural talent. But you don't sound, like new skills ``come to you´´ or that your natural afffection for juggling makes learning (notably) easier than for the average juggler or than another activity - at least not in a way that would spare you to still having to practise a whole lot. That would be a clear "2", I'd say.
So, @ all, if in doubt, feel free to read the options as roughly ..
1. 0-5% talent - 95-100% practise (hard work only)
2. 5-25% talent - 75-95% practise
3. 25-45% talent - 55-75% practise
4. 45-55% talent - 45-55% practise (equal)
5. 55-75% talent - 25-45% practise
6. 75-95% talent - 5-25% practise
7. 95-100% talent - 0-5% practise (pure talent, just do it and it will naturally succeed in ridiculously short time)
I put myself down as a number 2. I think I'm very similar to Daniel, I got good at juggling because when I first started I enjoyed it so much I did nothing but practice. Perhaps because of my enjoyment I didn't realise it was 'hard work'.
Agreed. The choices are made a bit complex by the 'love of juggling' part, which I think makes the vote lose focus on the nature vs nurture argument. I think that any natural aptitude is very small, but I voted 2 for the same reason as you.
Interesting Gatto's comment that he thinks it was all hard work. Where does that quote come from? On his own forum years ago he said that he believes he has some kind of natural advantage and sees things "in slow motion". Although I don't believe that at all I do think that believing it helped him a lot.
I always thought that seeing things in slow motion is acquired. When you first start attempting 5 balls it feels frantic and crazy fast and impossible. After a while (perhaps a few years or more), it can seem slow and simple. Gravity obviously hasn't changed but your perception has.
Sometime after I was pretty solid with 5 balls, I remember when it really clicked even more and became truly effortless. I fondly remember that as my juggling nirvana.
That 'love of juggling' wording is due to me trying to exclude, that ``talent´´ (which anyway is hard to seize as notion) need be determined by some genetic predisposition, let alone by a distinct ``juggling gene´´. And I tried to allow, that a wunderkind could feel as a natural without a need to have genetic evidence, without the need to have been ``born as juggler´´, just with love of juggling, then. Also, I wanted to avoid any discussion about whether ``(genetic) talent´´ even exists or not.
That Gatto statement is nothing like a citation with a source; I had it in mind, read it somewhere - it might be a mere rumour or misinterpretation (alas, I have no idea, where I got that from).
I'd put me somewhere between 5-6. When I can dredge up enough time to practice daily, I feel my progress goes by leaps and bounds, and it seems like I could be /very/ good if I were to try to make a career of juggling (or prioritize it higher).
There are certainly people who pick things up faster than me, but that population seems to be somewhere between 10-25 % of jugglers I know. There's probably some selection bias in there.
I'm a 2. I find it very difficult to understand juggling patterns and I've always learned everything slower than most. My love of juggling has helped me keep up the practicing.
This poll has now ended. The results are:
Bath juggling club - a review.
My first juggling club was the Bath club, at the Window Arts Centre. I went there from about 1994 till I moved to Bristol in the late 1990s. It survived for many years, but folded quite a while ago.
Now Henry Lawrence and Charlie Dancey have started up a new juggling club on a Thursday night. It's been running a couple of weeks now. I guess you'd call it a 'soft launch', in that they have gently publicised it by word of mouth to a few local jugglers, but don't seem to have listed it anywhere yet or set up a website.
I was busy the first two weeks packing for and attending Broxford, but I went along last week to check it out.
The venue is Pipley Barn, in Lansdown (at the top of the hill on the northern outskirts of Bath). This barn has been recently renovated by Henry, and I think he's intending it as a multi-use space: camping barn, cafe, music studio, and event space.
It has been beautifully renovated, although there's still a bit to be finished, so the main space had a few piles of unassembled kitchen cabinets and shower cubicles in the corner!
There were five of us there last Thursday, which was nice and friendly: me, Henry, Charlie, Robin & Linda. The club is advertised as suitable for juggling, board games, playing music, and consuming tea and snacks.
There is a main event space, which is the main barn space with a pitched roof and wooden roof trusses. If you stand under the peak I think you'd probably be able to juggle five clubs. I had no problem juggling three clubs anywhere. For passing I think you'd need to stand across the hall so you missed the trusses. With the current piles of building supplies that would probably limit you to four people passing at a time, but once those are cleared there may be room for more club passers.
As well as the main space there is a large kitchen, then the corridor leading to the toilets opens out into a small lounge area with sofas which would be great for socialising or playing music. Down the corridor are what will I believe be an accommodation area and a recording studio once work is finished.
The main space also has tables and chairs stacked up (I think it will eventually be a cafe during the day), so room to sit and chat with a cuppa.
The club has a lovely chilled vibe (as you'd expect from a space that Henry has put together). I'll definitely be back :-)
The barn is hard to find if you haven't been there before. It's nestled amongst fields, woodland and the golf course in Lansdown, next to the Cotswold Way footpath. Here's a link to it on Google Maps: https://goo.gl/maps/mUyxrETFHg92 It includes photos of the barn (pre-renovation).
To get there, drive north out of Bath on Lansdown Road. Go past the Golf Club and Racecourse. You then turn left on a private drive (towards Brockham End) - the turning is before you get to the Sir Bevil Grenville monument or the turning to the Avon Fire Service centre.
Go along the drive (noting the "No entry, private drive" sign!). After you come out of the woodland it opens out on to the golf course, with a tiny wooden signpost showing "Pipley Barn" to the left and "Brockham End" straight on. Turn left here onto a rough gravel track. It is very easy to miss, particularly in the dark. If the road dips down you have gone too far and are heading down to Brockham End.
After turning left onto the gravel track continue as it turns to the right. Then Pipley Barn is on your left. Henry puts out an easel with a juggling sign on it, but it's easy to miss in the dark. I've suggested he put a light on it to make it more obvious. There are absolutely no street lights up there so it is pitch black!
There is parking for about half a dozen cars in the barn courtyard, and probably a few more on the side of the track outside.
Highly recommended for a chilled juggling and social experience! Plus you get to reminisce about the good old days of juggling with Charlie Dancey ;-)
Here's the official details from Henry:
We are restarting the Bath Juggling Workshop.
Where: The Institute of Excellence, Pipley Barn, Brockham End, Lansdown, Bath, BA19BZ
The barn is near the 7th tee on the Lansdown golf course, and near point (1) on the map
When: Every Thursday evening starting 7 September 2017 from 7 pm.
What: Juggling hall with lots of spare props.
Board games (Chess, poker dice, BN1, Khet 2.0, Settlers of Catan, backgammon)
Table football / airball / mini-snooker
Do it yourself BBQ (weather permitting)
Leaf teas, ground coffee, cakes and biscuits.
Cost . Free first time, then £5 (waged) or £2.50 (children and concessions)
Hope you can come.
Henry Lawrence and Charlie Dancey
I went to the Bath club again last night. Very quiet this week - just me and Henry!
Still, we had a good passing session (just 4 count while Henry gets his eye back in). It also inspired Henry to turn out his juggling bag until he found his magician's thumb tip, which is useful for protecting his injured thumb from being bashed by unruly clubs. So hopefully we can now get Henry doing more passing again :-)
We also had a nice little session playing guitars in the corner. (Last week I picked Henry's brain for advice on buying a second-hand guitar. I bought one at the weekend, and wanted to see if I'd done ok. Henry thought I'd got a very nice guitar at a very good price, so that's a result. I'd also always been very impressed with Henry's guitar, and in a side-by-side comparison my one stands up as being in the same league as his, which makes me happy. Mine is from the some stable as Henry's (a Yamaha FG700S, compared to his 40-odd year old FG140).
The barn has had a bit of a tidy up since last week, with much of the building materials and clutter tidied away. Still a bit more to do, so Henry is holding off on a publicity blitz until it's all cleared away.
Of particular interest is a wood burning stove waiting to be installed (sometime next week I think Henry said?) That will be very nice in the winter warming the hall, and giving a nice focal point. Will it be the only juggling club with a wood burner?
Our passing allowed us to evaluate how well the hall works as a juggling space. As expected, passing lengthways down the hall wasn't so good because of the roof trusses. It worked, but doubles would be impossible, and singles were only a few inches away from the beams, so at risk if the pattern wasn't perfect.
Passing across the hall worked absolutely fine though, plenty of height. There is a pendant lamp hanging down in the middle of the hall (as well as all the halogen spotlights). We didn't ever hit it, but Henry is wondering about a pulley system to pull it out of the way during the juggling workshop.
As is customary with juggling club reports, the important stuff:
Tea: no loose-leaf tea this week, but the tea-bags were posh individually wrapped ones, in a china teapot with gold motif, served with milk in a matching china jug. 9/10
Biscuits: milk chocolate digestives, followed by shortbread fingers. 7/10 (would be higher but Altern8's posh biscuits have spoiled me!)
It would be nice to see a few more people at the club, it really is a very sweet space with a lovely vibe. Using a space owned by a juggler feels so much more at home than a church hall!
I'll come at some point. I was considering it this week, but Thursday crept up on me too quickly.
It has a habit of doing that. I think they should delay it by a day. In fact most days creep up on me. Maybe we should delay every day by a day?
Can I ask how the wood burning stove is protected from juggling props? I have one at home and we already broke the glass once with a stray club. Some kind of screen is needed without looking too ugly.
Currently just a sheet over the top (it's not installed yet).
Annoyingly the place where Henry intends to install it is the middle of the wall on the longest side of the hall, which is also the best place for passing due to the roof trusses!
It's opposite some floor-to-ceiling glass doors, which Henry intends to cover with a screen when the juggling workshop is on. I'm guessing he'll also need to invest in a wire mesh fire guard too to put around the burner!
After just two people last week, it was good to see word had spread, and we had eight people this week :-)
Henry, Charlie and Robin were there running things. I came along with my mum (not a juggler, but she was visiting, and was happy to come and listen to Charlie's stories of the good old days). And Jade, Lindsay, and Scott were doing some fine acrobalance when I arrived.
The wood burner has been installed, and despite the rather mild weather, was fired up. Very nice. I passed on the suggestions about protecting the glass door in some way :-)
Tea was back to loose-leaf again this week, but the china teapot could do with being bigger with that number of people! Snacks included popcorn and some sandwiches instead of biscuits.
I did some old-school passing with Scott (fast four count with lots of tricks). Scott, bless him, gave me some spiel about how he was about to throw a double-spin pass at me that would arrive at an unexpected time, and not to panic. I gently pointed out that I'd been passing for 23 years, and he could throw whatever he liked at me and I'd be fine ;-)
Charlie then joined in and we did 4-count/2-count feeding with run-arounds.
Eventually I managed to persuade them to do some proper lefty/righty stuff, so I did a simple pass-pass-self feed while they attempted 3-count. That felt so much better :-)
At some point Henry started playing guitar in the lounge, and people gradually migrated, picking up instruments on the way, to finish up with a nice little live music session. Jade on viola, Lindsay on guitar, Henry on washtub bass, and Scott singing. I think there may have been some harmonica too? I'd love to get my guitar playing up to a level where I could join in.
Sadly we had to leave then as my mum had an early start the following morning.
Great vibe as always. I'll be back next week.
Here is a playlist of the records broken or set in the World Record Challenge at the Guelph Juggling Fest 2017.
3 ball lazies: 2 minutes and 7 seconds by Matan Presberg
3 ball shoulder throws: 204 catches by Jorden Moir
3 ring backcrosses: 183 catches by Matan Presberg
3 club flats: 10 minutes and 42 seconds by Nick Thomas
4 ball lazies: 54 catches by Matan Presberg
4 ball box: 3 minutes 57 seconds by Matan Presberg
7 balls isolated: 1 minute and 43 seconds by Matan Presberg
7 ball 867: 188 catches by Matan Presberg
7 ball claw: 7 catches by Nick Thomas
9 ball reverse: 16 catches by Matan Presberg
3 ball: 1 hand & 1 foot: 56 catches by Jorden Moir
4 balls: 2 hands & 1 foot: 142 catches by Jorden Moir
4 ring speed: 232 catches in 1 minute by Nick Thomas
6 ball speed: 312 catches in 1 minute by Matan Presberg
3 ring slow: 32 catches in 1 minute by Sydney MacDonald
4 ring slow: 76 catches in 1 minute by Sydney MacDonald
4 ball slow: 63 catches in 1 minute by Nick Thomas
+ Number of records set or broken at a single festival: 17?
That is an impressive set of records, congrats to all those involved.
18 last year at Guelph fest! I guess we're going down hill (I blame myself...I didn't set/break any this year. Too much running the fest, not enough juggling).
There was a world record challenge at IJA 2013, too. It looks like a subset of the broken records is available here:
I don't know the total number of records broken there.
I've still got one video left to upload (Sydney MacDonald with 16 min of 4b full reverse fountain), so it should end up as 18 records for WRC at Guelph Fest 2017.
As to previous World Record Challenges...
The first WRC was in 2010 at WJF 5. Prizes were only for surpassing existing duo numbers passing records.
In 2011 there were WRCs at WJF 6 and the IJA festival. The records expanded to solo numbers juggling records in addition to two-person numbers passing (i.e. the records tracked on the Juggling World Records Wikipedia page at that time). The prize for "missing records" was also introduced to encourage jugglers to attempt a flash or better of passing 17 rings or solo force bouncing 11 balls, the only two records considered missing at the time!
WRC 2013 was at the IJA fest in Bowling Green, OH. The records expanded to everything tracked by Juggle Wiki. Missing records were greatly expanded with minimums set for each, based on discussions I had with Alex Lubker. About 28 records were set or broken by a wide range of jugglers, with Thomas Dietz breaking the most.
Then came the WRCs at Guelph Mini-Fest 2016 and Guelph Fest 2017.
Tomorrow another WRC begins at JuggleMIT 2017, so stay tuned...
What you're saying is 28 records in one fest is the one to beat. I'll have to start training for the next time the WRC comes to a fest I'm attending!
Actually, I'll train especially for if you come to the next Guelph fest. It needs more people/publicity! (and I really thank you for helping with that)
I haven't watched the entire video, but I think Gatto does 7 for about 10 minutes without moving his feet here:
I'm not sure that counts as isolation for some reason. I watched Ofek Snir do 7 balls without moving his feet for over 12 minutes at the EJC last year.
The most convincing argument I heard was that the inability to move has a psychological on people. I've found this to be true in my experience.
Such a nice idea to set these records at the convention! I've been thinking about setting a few records lately, but I can't get the motivation to actually film them or practice tricks which I could run over a minute... In a convention/group setting I'd feel less awkward to try and less pushy to post, yet we'd still stretch juggling as we know it!
I might try and introduce this at some convention here in the EU in the future :)
And congrats on the results too!
Useless fecking loser needs TWO hands to catch the last one! What a pathetic waster, he's going nowhere fast.
Queer .. I saw nothing, only a still picture of the solar system with a tiny lightblue brahman hovering a handwidth above ground on Jupiter. Guess, my subconscience did that to protect me.
I flashed 8 balls today. I was bored, had to wait 15 minutes, there were some cheap beanbags lying around... I don't even juggle beanbags, ugh! Worst of all, I did it after only 5 minutes of trying so then I had to kill another 10 minutes somehow..
Where are my cool points?
The Smithsonian Insitution's Sidedoor podcast just came out with an episode all about the life and legacy of Paul Cinquevalli! Well worth a listen if for no reason other than to listen to the dulcet tones of Erik Aberg's voice.
Check it out!
Found a download link for this episode in their RSS feed Sidedoor: ep. 7 | the man who defied gravity (mp3 36.3mb)
Thanks for the heads up Thom, just added this to my startling large collection of things to listen to!
Finally managed to get around to listening to this today white I was getting in my pelargoniums and taking cuttings. It was quite a good listen, even if it did give the listener the impression that nothing Cinquevalli did was gimmicked when some of it certainly was.
Surprised at Erik implying that the tricks were not gimmicked as he has stated here that he believes that at least some of the tricks were gimmicked. Here's the thread where we discussed this previously and an article I linked to that mentions how he might have done the billiard balance trick.
This interview was over way sooner than I thought. I have not listened to it, so I do not know what parts they used, but we hardly even scratched the surface of Cinquevalli. They asked questions that were rather silly (for an example, what a member of the audience would wear), and kept interrupting me before I could come to any point. Hopefully, there will be a chance of discussing him properly in the future. In terms of Cinquevalli and gimmicked props, the point is that he claimed not to use them, and specifically pointed that out, as a difference to magic. What the actual reality was, can of course be discussed. The distinction between juggling and magic is clear after Cinquevalli, but not before.
Thanks. I totally understand how they could have quoted you out of context. It seems like Cinquevalli was working to make the distinction between juggling and magic, but then breaking his own rules. I totally understand that his main goal was one of entertainment and making a living though.
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