Super Sonic + yoga

Former Clown Chronicles Vol 3- How I Learned to Juggle

Welcome back Blog Thatter's,

This blog post is officially killing two birds with one stone (not that I condone that kind of thing... depending on what kind of birds they are). It's Volume Three of the Former Clown Chronicles (just in case anyone cares- here's Volume One and Two) and it also doubles as my entry into Blog This Challenge Number 38- How I Learned To....

Here's the thing. My sense of shame and self-respect are gone, people, gone. I think I've entered the Blog This challenge about six times and the most I have ever gotten is three votes. So this time, I am fully prepared to beg for votes. Voting opens Thursday. None of this "Check out the entries and vote for the best". Stuff that for diplomacy. Vote for me. Me, me, me. If you like. Pretty please.

Anyways, enough of my drivel. On with the show.....

How I Learned To Juggle

First let me say, juggling is a little bit like learning to ride a bike. It's a skill that, once you have it, it will stick with you for life. Even if you haven't picked up the balls for years, you can recreate your original skill level within matter of weeks, practicing every day. It's actually easy to do once you have the basics. Although, here's a warning- doing those first few revolutions can be bloody hard work.

Juggling is great exercise, great stress relief and, according to Google and my yoga teacher, helps connect the right and left hemispheres of the brain and get them to work together. Whatever that means. Apparently, it's quite good for you.

I was taught to juggle by my mentor and love-affair-turned-sour, Gooba the Clown. I learned to juggle because I had just dropped out of uni and left behind my extremely expensive HECS debt to become a professional clown. So I figured I probably should be a 'proper' one.

For those of you not in the know, there are a few basic types of juggling. You have scarves, which purist clown snobs will tell you is not 'real' juggling. Personally I think it's quite pretty, and I can do it. So I like it. So there.

Then there is hoops (difficult but quite effective- one I can only just do) and clubs (also quite difficult. I can't do this one at all. But I'm a shortie and each club is 50 cm's long.Ttrying to juggle three of them, I almost have the equivalent of my own height in the air). Then, of course, there is all kinds of crazy things like fire clubs, knives, chainsaws, and eggs. And the truly incredible contact juggling, as seen in by children of the Eighties in The Labyrinth.

And then, of course, there's balls.

As I mentioned earlier, getting your first full revolution with juggling balls (where all three balls are thrown and caught) is muchly difficult, but incredibly rewarding. I can guarantee once you do it you'll be jumping up and down going "I did it! I did it!" and doing the Sara-Marie style bum-dance. Or maybe that's just me.

Anyhows, for any aspiring jugglers or those suffering from the condition commonly known as Repressed Clown Syndrome, here are some tips for learning to juggle.

Get good balls. The heavier, the better.

Don't worry about catching, just throwing. To start with, anyway. The trick is in the timing- practise throwing your first two balls- right hand first, then the left when the right one reaches the top of it's arc. Once you've perfected that, you can start catching them and add another one (or two or three) balls in.

Spend time in the bedroom. Yep, that's right. Learn to juggle standing next to your bed. To start with, you are going to be doing a lot of dropping. You're not even trying to catch them, remember? And every time you bend all the way the over to pick the balls up, you make yourself dizzy, which significantly decrease your chances of catching the next throw. Geddit?

Once you get tricky, don't look up. Belive me- no matter how high you throw the ball, it will come back down. There is no need to turn your face upward to check it's progress. Spoken by experience, a black eye and a party full of kids laughing at me (and not in the good, 'oh that clown is funny' way- more in the 'Haha! She's bleeding!' kind of way).

Hold off on the fire. And the chainsaws. And probably even the eggs. Just in case you're not as good as think you are...

Happy Juggling!

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Former Clown Chronicles Vol 3- How I Learned to Juggle + yoga